Museums and Investment

The Guggenheim Effect

When you are buying a house to fix up or lending money for that fix-n-flip project you hope to profit from, the value the property has now and will have after the renovation is complete is what you are focusing on. You will be thinking about neighborhood and what makes a neighborhood a good place to live. These days, according to Alina Dizik of the WSJ, you should look around for a nearby museum.

Museums are revitalizing neighborhoods all over the world. The neighborhood revitalizing phenomenon of a museum is called the Guggenheim Effect. According to the Economist and the WSJ the Guggenheim Effect is the phenomenal revitalization of an industrial town that was dying, Bilbao in Spain in this instance, into a “sleek tourist destination” by the construction of a museum (Economist).

Walkability, and Safety, Interesting Things to Do

According to research done by Stephen Sheppard, an economics professor at Williams College in Massachusetts, “property values of homes near museums rise between 20% and 50% over the course of five years (WSJ ). ” Homebuyers, according to Dizik, are drawn to a museum building’s bold architecture, its rotating exhibits, “its guest lectures, and attractive indoor and outdoor common areas.” Some are looking for safety and amenities in one place. Entertainment and restaurants that you can walk to are also big draws.

There are museum districts in several towns in Texas. Look around your town and see if a museum is raising property values near you. This may be where you want to invest next.


Austin, Texas


Mercedes-Benz Museum in Stuttgart, Germany, during blue hour.  Julian Herzog [GFDL ( or CC BY 4.0

Austin Museums

In Austin, the museum district is more of a museum partnership and there are many museums in the downtown. There is a plan here to connect the walking and biking trails into a big loop of urban trails that will extend 30 miles, traversing the city from Lady Bird lake to Walnut Creek Metropolitan Park, creating a safe walkable and bikeable commute route through downtown. So living near or on that route may be attractive.

Mexic Arte Museum, 419 Congress Ave

The Blanton Museum of Art, University of Texas Campus

The Harry Ransom Center, 300 W. 21st street, University of Texas Campus

Mondo Gallery, 4115 Guadalupe St

Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum

Yard Dog Art Gallery, 1510 S. Congress Ave.

Arthouse at the Jones Center, 700 Congress Ave.

Houston Museums

There is one in Houston and it boasts 4 walkable zones, 19 museums, and over 2,300 residents according to Homes in the museum district sell faster than average compared to other neighborhoods in Houston. The neighborhoods and surrounding area are a mix of historic homes with character and charm, to modern townhomes, and high rises.

Museum of Fine Arts Houston Expansion

Moody Center for the Arts at Rice University

The Houston Center for Contemporary Craft

Czech Center Museum

Buffalo Soldiers National Museum

Lawndale Arts Center

Houston Museum of African American Culture

Children’s Museum of Houston

Houston Museum of Natural Science

Dallas Museums

In Dallas, the museum district is the Arts District downtown. It is a cultural hub of music, art, and theatre. The Dallas Arts District is bordered by St. Paul Street and Ross Avenue as well as major throughways Woodall Rodgers Freeway and Central Expressway.

Dallas Museum of Art

Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth

Nasher Sculpture Center,

Perot Museum of Nature and Science

Kimbrel Art Museum

Dallas Contemporary

Meadows Museum

San Antonio Museums

In San Antonio, a river walk extension completed in 2009 is called the Museum Reach. It extends past the zoo, the Japanese Tea Gardens, Brackenridge Park, the Pearl District, and three of San Antonio’s museums, all listed below.

The Do Seum, San Antonio’s Museum for Kids, 2800 Broadway

The Witte Museum, 3801 Broadway

San Antonio Museum of Art, 200 West Jones Avenue


What do all these neighborhoods have in common, interesting things to do, walkability, and safety.


Dizik, Alina, To Discover an up-and-Coming Neighborhood, Look for a Museum, The Wall Street Journal, November 25, 2018

The Economist, The Guggenheim Effect, Can other cities imitate Bilbao’s cultural-tourism success? August 18, 2018





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