Key Market Indicators
A market profile for the Station Area was completed that provided the basis for reviewing the area’s suitability for Transit Oriented Development (TOD). Key market indicators include dense development patterns, a diverse mix of land use and housing types, a significant net inflow of workers which establishes the area as a major employment center, above average household spending on retail goods and services, and local zoning and planning initiatives that provide incentive for TOD. In addition, the train station serves as a regional hub for SEPTA bus, which provides feeder service to SEPTA regional rail that connects Ardmore to Center City Philadelphia. Strong intermodal connections and dense development patterns are supportive of TOD, particularly when the built environment favors pedestrian activity as it does in Ardmore.
While the market profile suggests that the community could support TOD, one area of market weakness is the ratio of jobs to housing. Studies of TOD best practices have shown that the most sustainable TODs have a jobs-to-housing ratio of 3:1 to 6:1. In other words, there are 3 to 6 jobs available for each housing unit within the station area, which signifies that the station area functions as a major employment center. Major employment centers have the potential to generate significant transit trips and are therefore considered important to successful TOD. Today, the community (1.7:1) and the station area (1.8:1) have a healthy balance between jobs and housing, but additional job-generating uses would be needed to support significant increases in transit ridership.
In addition to the jobs-housing balance, the station area would also need an increase in residential density. Within the station area, residential densities are currently at 10 housing units per acre. TOD best practices research has shown that the ideal housing densities for urban neighborhoods like Ardmore should be closer to 15 to 35 housing units per acre. These indicators provide insight into the type of development that could enhance Ardmore Station as a functioning TOD. Private investment that would create additional job opportunities and deliver high density residential development to the market will be key to realizing the full potential of Ardmore Station.