Really fascinating topic that I was just thinking about so your article was timely. Although I think there is likely some connection to property values and commute time, the issue with the 99mph data is that they assume causation when there is only evidence of correlation.
Just throwing out random thoughts here but perhaps the reason for higher prices is the absence of new land to build upon not the commute. Pure economic theory of limited supply causing increased pricing.
Although commutes may become less of an issue getting to downtown, 5 minutes versus 20 minutes is still a cost no matter how pleasant the commute might be. Perhaps that time cost is enough to not have any impact on cities like Austin.
This topic reminds me of when Life magazine published their predictions of flying cars, complete with photos of men in fedoras smoking pipes in their flying cars and women in poodle dresses waving goodbye to those working husbands. It’s hard to imagine what we can’t imagine.
Such a fascinating topic of discussion, thanks for writing and sharing.