New York City High Line
Using Mobile Data to analyze customer demographics, geographics, and on-site behavior to predict symbiotic relationships.
There is much talk – and much confusion – among real estate owners and developers about the myriad applications for “geofencing,” “big data,” “massive mobile device data” and “artificial intelligence.” At Alexander Babbage, we demystify these terms and provide the real estate industry not simply with data but with practical information and augmented intelligence to answer to real-world development, leasing and marketing questions.
In November 2018, we used mobile device data to quantify key visitation metrics for New York City’s major retail shopping districts for JLL. Findings from the analysis confirmed that Union Square attracts the most Millennials, Meatpacking sees the greatest percentage of visitors between 11:00 pm – 4:00 am, and visitors to Madison Avenue and Fifth Avenue linger longer – more than 2.5 hours.
These findings piqued the interest of Bloomberg News, who, when writing a pre-opening story about Hudson Yards asked a key question. The question posed by Bloomberg News was: Can anonymous mobile device data be used to understand the demographic and geographic profile and the on-site behaviors of visitors to New York City’s High Line1 – and there-fore inform whether the High Line and Hudson Yards are likely to have a symbiotic relationship? In short, are visitors to the High Line likely to shop and dine at Hudson Yards, or is their profile a mismatch with the Hudson Yards’ merchandising strategy?
1 The High Line is an elevated public park/walking trail along what was once a freight railroad track along Manhattan’s West Side. It attracts 7 million visitors annually.
To answer these questions of who visited the High Line, Alexander Babbage geofenced the High Line, captured anonymized visitor data from calendar year 2018 and then leveraged its proprietary TruTrade® methodology to quantify the age, income, state of residence and visit duration of visitors to the High Line to answer the reporter’s questions. Alexander Babbage provided Bloomberg News with the following findings:
- Compared to New York City residents, visitors to the High Line are YOUNG, EDUCATED, WEALTHY and DIVERSE – and they spend an average of one hour and 34 minutes on the High Line.
- 24% more likely to be younger than age 34.
- 48% more likely to have a college or postgraduate degree.
- 32% more likely to have household income of $100,000 or more.
- A demographic reflection of New York City’s diversity – 51% of High Line visitors are non white vs. 55% in New York City.
- 25% of visitors to the High Line reside outside of New York and New Jersey.
Key Take Away: The profile and behavior of the High Line’s visitors are well aligned with Hudson Yards’ merchandising mix with a particularly promising opportunity for High Line visitors to eat, drink and dine at Hudson Yards.