TYPES OF BUILDINGS. 109
A repelling approach to a store. Liberty Street, near William Street, New York.
The natural tendency to erect continually better and handsomer buildings is an added force drawing retail shops onward into new locations. Thus, while the best business street in an old city has usually been built up with brick houses two or three stories high and converted into shops on the ground floor, the buildings on the next business street are larger and better built, and so on until the best section is reached. Sometimes the best buildings when new are rented for less than the old ones, but as tenants are attracted the pressure of demand causes rents to advance in the new buildings, while removals cause rents to drop in the old ones. When the rents in the new buildings are the highest in the city the shifting of the shop centre and point of highest value has been accomplished. Efforts are sometimes made to bring back tenants to the old buildings by improving them, but rarely succeed, because the onward movement is too strong to be overcome, and because the efforts are usually made too late and without co-operation among the owners of the declining street. The owners of property yielding the highest rents in the city usually anticipate nothing but continued increase of rents and seldom realize that the business centre of a city can shift, until declining rents bring this fact forcibly to their attention. Even then many of them have not the courage or enterprise to tear down their old buildings and erect handsome new ones, and others are financially unable to do so, it being more difficult to obtain building loans on a declining street than on an improving street.
How to carry on business behind a granite quarry is the problem confronting the prospective tenant. A common error of architects is to sacrifice income from store frontage to "solidity" of construction. Jersey Central Building. Liberty and Washington Streets, New York.
Corner store on Nicollet Avenue, Minneapolis. Removing brick work to permit more show windows. A not uncommon reconstruction.
To take up the general effects of the erection of buildings, these may either increase, diminish or have no effect upon the value of the. land covered and the surrounding land. The hypothesis of absence of effect may be eliminated, since while the selling price of a lot may not be affected, some effect on the surroundings will surely result. The first principle is that if the building is suited to the needs of the location and is equal to or superior in construction, arrangement and appearance to existing buildings, it tends to increase values, while if inferior and cheaper than existing buildings it tends to depress them. Such an effect of inferior buildings is by no means uniform, as there are locations in which the erection of any building, however poor, increases values.
Good and bad store fronts. The store on street level with good windows yields about 25% more rent than the adjoining one. Madison Street, Toledo.
The effects of buildings differ chiefly according to whether they are erected in a built up section within a city, or in new territory on its outskirts. If erected in a built-up section, old buildings are removed to make place for the new ones, public attention is attracted to the locality and the prices of surrounding land stiffen. The new buildings are quite certain to draw some tenants from the older surrounding buildings, so that their rents and value will diminish, while the land being suitable for better buildings will increase in value.