Agricultural land protection near the urban-rural fringe is a goal of manyjurisdictions, including British Columbia, Canada, which uses a provincial-widezoning scheme to prevent subdivisions and non-agricultural uses of the land.Preferential taxes are also used to encourage agricultural use of the land. Small scalehobby farmers are present at the urban fringe near Victoria (the capital), both insideand outside of the Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR). The goal of this paper is toinvestigate whether hobby farms create problems for agricultural land preservation.We make use of a GIS (geographic information system) model to construct detailedspatial variables and analyse our parcel-level data set using an hedonic pricing modeland a limited dependent variable model. The results show that hobby farmers tend toselect small parcels that are near open space and relatively close to the city and theytend to support horses and other livestock. In terms of price, farmland is worth moreper ha the smaller the parcel is and the closer it is to the city. In general farmland isworth more when it is less fragmented but this appears to be reversed for hobby farms– indicating that hobby farmers may be better adapted to surviving in the urban fringethan conventional farmers. The conclusions drawn from the results in this paperwould likely apply to other jurisdictions which seek to protect agricultural land in theurban fringe.
Author(s), editor(s), contributor(s):
Stobbe, Tracy Eagle, Alison J. van Kooten, G. Cornelis