Monthly Archives: October 2012

Converting a Shopping Center into a Walkable Village

By Dom Nozzi

When I was a senior planner in Gainesville FL, a friend in Boulder CO asked me about what I thought of Boulder’s plans to redevelop a shopping center (to transform it into a more walkable, mixed use village), and her concerns that densifying the shopping center would congest a federal highway that served the center.

I pointed out to her that it was a difficult issue. There are positives and negatives to a rejuvenated mall, I told her. On the one hand, it would be a problem if the new village attracted so many cars that the vicinity would become unlivable, thereby hurting the laudable objective of adding residential in the area.

But on the other hand, I can think of several positives:

First, making Highway 36 more congested would be a form of “planned congestion” that I support. Unless we make it more painful for people to drive a car, we’ll never be able to encourage a meaningful number of people to use transit. After all, is the reason that more people use transit in big cities because they happen to be more enlightened, or is it because they have gotten sick of the congestion and costs?

Because congestion is an effective way for people to opt to travel by transit, congestion actually reduces air pollution and energy consumption. While it is true that there are more direct and effective ways than congestion to get people to use the bus, such as increased parking fees, toll roads, reduced parking supply, etc., these strategies are politically suicidal.

Second, an enormous problem that a number of cities face is how to compete with the outlying big boxes and mega-malls. Unfortunately, this often means that you must compromise on getting retail that is scaled for livability and nearby neighborhoods – that is, you almost surely must opt for retail that is rather large in scale and just too big to be a good neighbor for a residential neighborhood. A big contributor to this problem is that investors are usually not willing to take a chance on a new project unless it is scaled for profitability — which generally means scaled for regional car trips. So until we can figure out a way to reduce the size of our overly wide roads and excessively cheap car travel and free parking – which induces a mega-retailer economy — we may need to continue to strive to make “core area” mega-retail livable.

As I was conveying these thoughts to my friend, my city of Gainesville was about to approve the construction of an expensive downtown parking garage as a way to attract a 20-screen movie-plex downtown. While such a garage and movie-plex would have been a problem with regard to the number of cars attracted, the downtown desperately needs to attract more 24-hour activity — especially by families.

Another compromise Gainesville opted to accept at the time (something that is not conducive to a walkable downtown, yet had other, compensatory benefits for downtown) was the decision to approve a mixed use, five-story retail/office/residential project downtown (to replace a deadening surface parking lot). The compromise there was a drive-thru.

Neither the five-story project or the movie-plex is perfect, but town centers in cities such as Gainesville need them both, and in my mind, they are net positives for pedestrians and livability.

Thirdly, for transit to work well, it needs concentrations of retail and residential and cultural and recreation and office — which the proposed transformation of a shopping center into a village will provide. Places like Boulder and Gainesville have nowhere near the concentrations of housing and retail needed to make transit work. A new, walkable, dense village can help.

Finally, I told my concerned friend, people in the vicinity of the proposed new village will need a good range of facilities in close proximity if we expect them to reduce the number of vehicles owned, and the number and length of trips made.

A concentrated village with a broad mix of uses is an important way to do this.

_________________________________________________

Visit my urban design website read more about what I have to say on those topics. You can also schedule me to give a speech in your community about transportation and congestion, land use development and sprawl, and improving quality of life.

Visit: www.walkablestreets.wordpress.com

Or email me at: dom[AT]walkablestreets.com

50 Years Memoir CoverMy memoir can be purchased here: Paperback = http://goo.gl/9S2Uab Hardcover =  http://goo.gl/S5ldyF

My book, The Car is the Enemy of the City (WalkableStreets, 2010), can be purchased here: http://www.lulu.com/product/paperback/the-car-is-the-enemy-of-the-city/10905607Car is the Enemy book cover

My book, Road to Ruin, can be purchased here:

http://www.amazon.com/Road-Ruin-Introduction-Sprawl-Cure/dp/0275981290

My Adventures blog

http://domnozziadventures.wordpress.com/

Run for Your Life! Dom’s Dangerous Opinions blog

http://domdangerous.wordpress.com/

My Town & Transportation Planning website

http://walkablestreets.wordpress.com/

My Plan B blog

https://domz60.wordpress.com/

My Facebook profile

http://www.facebook.com/dom.nozzi

My YouTube video library

http://www.youtube.com/user/dnozzi

My Picasa Photo library

https://picasaweb.google.com/105049746337657914534

My Author spotlight

http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/domatwalkablestreetsdotcom

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Filed under Economics, Road Diet, Sprawl, Suburbia, Urban Design, Walking

Explaining the Difference Between the Non-Religious Progressive Mind and the Reactionary Religious Mind

By Dom Nozzi

The more a man knows, the more he forgives. – Catherine the Great

According to Canadian psychologist Robert Altemeyer…fundamentalists exhibit a high quotient of authoritarian traits: “They are highly submissive to established authority, aggressive in the name of that authority, and conventional to the point of insisting everyone should behave as their authorities decide. They are fearful and self-righteous and have a lot of hostility in them that they readily direct toward various out-groups. They are easily incited, easily led, rather uninclined to think for themselves, largely impervious to facts and reason, and rely instead on social support to maintain their beliefs. They bring strong loyalty to their in-groups, have thick-walled, highly comnpartmentalized minds, use a lot of double standards in their judgments, are surprisingly unprincipled at times, and are often hypocrites.” –The Party is Over, by Mike Lofgren (2012)

A fundamental difference between those with a reactionary, religious (or fundamentalist) mindset and those with a more progressive, non-religious mindset is that the reactionary mind sees almost all societal problems as problems associated with a discreet set of inexplicably evil people. Such utterly heinous people are not evil due to upbringing or societal dysfunction or economic woes or unfairness. Rather, such awful people are either born evil or have chosen to engage in evil. There are a limited number of them, and it is possible to separate righteous, moral people from evil people – largely through their belief or lack of belief in the views of the Christian tribal norms.

Given this, for the reactionary religious mind, problems caused by evil people elicits fearful hysteria, and can only be solved by submissively and self-righteously supporting authority figures (such as judges or elected officials) who demand that the evil people be punished (as our Christian god so often urges as a “solution” to evil), be isolated from us (so that we and our children are not contaminated by them), or be killed (if we kill enough of them, we will eventually rid ourselves of the contamination).

For the reactionary religious mind, it is not possible to rehabilitate evil people (the Christian god makes that clear with his use of the eternal lake of fire in hell). Nor is it possible to reduce evil behavior by economic or other forms of societal or judicial reform. According to the reactionary religious mind, because abusing a nation does not breed an increase in bad behavior, imperialistically or preemptively attacking evil nations or punishing and abusing such nations will REDUCE the amount of evil in the world, and will not increase the amount of bad behavior.

Non-religious progressives, by contrast, generally believe that punishment, abuse, and social or economic woes are a root cause of poor behavior.

The reactionary religious mind self-righteously considers itself amongst the Chosen People (or the exceptionalists), which means they have nothing to fear about loss of privacy or loss of civil rights.

After all, they are certain they will never engage in unlawful activity.

This mindset also leads to a host of hypocritical, double-standard beliefs and behavior (“Terrorist nations” cannot use drones or preemptive strikes or torture, but the exceptionalist, Christian America has a right to do so because we are, by definition, righteous and a force for Good.”)

Again, those of a non-religious, progressive mind believe, in general, problem behavior or crime is caused by societal problems, a dysfunctional or otherwise unfair economic system, or of poor upbringing.

By contrast, the reactionary religious mind has concluded that problem behavior or crime is due to bad, insane or evil individuals. Behavior that is utterly inexplicable.

Contributing to this is that such a mind finds it necessary and virtuous to be ignorant of certain knowledge (since “bad” or “immoral” knowledge can lead to a loss of religious faith or other forms of wickedness).

The only “solutions” left for those harboring the reactionary religious mind is that such evil people must be isolated, punished or killed. Or submit to and cheer on judges, prison guards, policeman and elected officials who will do that for us.

This distinction helps clarify a number of major societal issues in American society:

Terrorism, for the reactionary religious mind is monstrously inexplicable. The reactionary religious mind believes “terrorism” is contagious. “Terrorism” must be quarantined by punishing “terrorists,” isolating “terrorists,” or killing “terrorists.” It is not caused by nations that have abused people. It is caused by a discreet number of evil people (who George W. Bush informed us are people who are so inexplicable that they “hate freedom.”) If America is able to round up and kill enough of these evil, insane “terrorists,” we will not have “terrorism.” The ignorance of the reactionary religious mind means that such a mind is completely incapable of seeing any military, economic or social cause for such “terrorism.” “Terrorism” is, in other words, inexplicable. By contrast, the non-religious, progressive mind would generally argue that the US “War on Terror” is creating a HUGE INCREASE in people who hate the US so much that they end up dedicating their entire lives to harming America and Americans. That is, punishing, isolating and killing people is making the “terrorism” problem much worse.

Illegal drugs, for the reactionary religious mind, immediately cause, on first use, addiction, ruination of a person’s character and future, or death. Excessive or recreational drug use (unless the drug happens to be alcohol, nicotine or caffeine) is inexplicable, and such behavior is chosen because the person is evil or has been contaminated by other evil users of illegal drugs. The “solution” for the reactionary religious mind is punishment, isolation, or killing illegal drug users and illegal drug “kingpins.” Again, such reactionary “solutions” make the drug problem much worse. The ignorance of the reactionary religious mind means that such a mind is completely incapable of seeing any economic or social cause for such dysfunctional drug use. Dysfunctional drug use is, in other words, inexplicable (or due to someone too weak or immoral to resist drug addiction). For the non-religious, progressive mind, by contrast, illegal drug use that leads to dysfunction by the user is generally caused by economic or social dysfunction (or medical/genetic issues). Similarly, the non-religious, progressive mind knows that violent illegal drug sales are almost entirely induced by the illegality of the drug.

Sex, for the reactionary religious mind, if not for procreation within a marriage, will infect one with deadly AIDS, unwanted pregnancy outside of marriage, or a host of other terrible STDs. To reduce societal sex-related problems, the reactionary religious mind believes that sex and contraception must be hidden rather than introduced as sex education in school. Depictions of sex or discussion of sex and contraception will contaminate people, and lead to promiscuity, unwanted pregnancy and STDs. We must punish and isolate those who are open about sexuality, as doing otherwise will contaminate us. Non-religious progressives, by contrast, know through worldwide studies, as well as logic, that knowledge about sex and access to contraception substantially reduces the incidence of STDs, unwanted pregnancy (particularly in teens), and abortions. Once again, the reactionary “solutions” make sexuality problems much worse.

Religion, for the reactionary religious mind, is only legitimate if it is of the Judeo-Christian variety. And Christianity must be heavily subsidized by all US citizens (regardless of their religious beliefs). Christianity must be forced down all throats of US citizens because not doing so will result in the downfall of the morals of US adults and children, lead to an explosion in crime, and bring about the downfall of the nation. Exposure to non-Christian beliefs or (gasp!) atheism will contaminate minds and lead many to shed their Christian beliefs. Only by punishing or isolating ourselves from non-Christian beliefs are we safe. Historically, it was also necessary to burn non-Christians at the stake. Today, many of the reactionary religious mindset believe it is important to kill Muslims.

Police, for the reactionary religious mind, must be given ever larger amount of local and state government dollars to assist society in punishing, isolating and killing the unalterably evil people who prey on law-abiding people. Because of the supreme importance of law enforcement to punish, isolate and kill evildoers, the police budget must dwarf all other local government service budgets. For the non-religious, progressive mind, sub-optimizing on providing resources for the police department significantly worsens crime problems, because when an unbalanced amount of public dollars are allocated to police, other essential social services are hobbled. Why? Because such services are starved of public dollars and other resources. This hobbling of social services greatly increases societal crime problems.

The Death Penalty, for the reactionary religious mind, is an essential tool for removing the contamination of unredeemably evil people. Since we cannot rehabilitate those who are inexplicably evil, our only recourse is to punish them and isolate them until we can execute them. By contrast, non-religious progressives tend to know that the death penalty costs more in public dollars than imprisoning someone for life. Non-religious progressives generally see that this counterproductively results in other social services essential to rehabilitating problem behavior is curtailed. And this leads to an increase in the amount of problem behavior in society.

Gun Control, for the reactionary religious mind, is intolerable because it will mean surrender to a tyrannical dictatorship in America, and we will be defenseless against inexplicably murderous, evil, insane, mass-murdering gunmen. It is possible, according to the reactionary religious mind, for society to identify law-abiding people who would never think of unjustifiably using a gun to kill people in a criminal action or fit of passion. Only those “other” people, who we can easily identify as inexplicably evil, would ever use a gun inappropriately. Guns are essential for the overriding task of punishing, isolating and killing evil people. Guns are emblematic of the violence-loving nature of the reactionary religious mind. For the non-religious, progressive mind, by contrast, easy and nearly universal access to guns inevitably leads to an increase in gun deaths due to “crimes of passion,” and an increase in the number of accidental gun deaths. Non-religious progressives know that even “upstanding” or “law-abiding” citizens can some day end up engaging in criminal behavior with guns, have gun-related admin-ajax (6)accidents, or kill people in a fit of passion.

Militarism, for the reactionary religious mind, serves purposes that parallel that of the local police. The military budget must forever expand and dwarf all other government expenditures. Militarism is essential in protecting us from evil that threatens to take over our nation and take away or freedom-loving way of life. We need overwhelming military force to punish, isolate and kill those who are inexplicably hating America. For the reactionary religious mind, military violence is a necessary, ever-present way of life. By contrast, the non-religious, progressive mind knows that unbalanced public funding that provides excessive dollars to militarism is a far more likely recipe for endangering national security, because unbalanced military spending starves other essential federal government services. Starving other areas of the federal government thereby degrades public education, social services, rehabilitation, and the overall economy. This worsening will ultimately lead to a self-imposed societal death spiral that has nothing to do with foreign “enemies.” In addition, the non-religious, progressive mind knows that aggressive military build-ups inevitably lead to unsustainable American military intervention overseas (which the reactionary religious mind self-righteously defends is our role as the “world’s policeman”). The non-religious, progressive mind also realizes that the arming of other nations or groups abroad – often will have the boomerang result of arming future enemies of America in the future.

Crime, for the reactionary religious mind, can only be effectively reduced if we drastically increase punishment for criminals, isolate criminals, and execute the irredeemably evil criminals in our midst. The ignorance of the reactionary religious mind means that such a mind is completely incapable of seeing any economic or social cause for crime. Crime is, in other words, either inexplicable, or committed by immoral people. We must, according to the reactionary religious mind, eliminate the rights of anyone suspected of a crime – which, to the reactionary religious mind, are guilty by the simple fact that they are suspects. Those who harbor a reactionary religious mind need have no fear of a loss of civil rights, as the reactionary religious mind naively believes that they will never have anything to hide, or will never be engaged in activity that will lead to government investigation.

Conclusion

A crucial difference between the reactionary religious mind and the non-religious, progressive mind is that the former is convinced that on each of the above issues, there is a discreet number of “bad guys,” and that problems caused by such inexplicably evil people will decline if we would just punish, isolate, and kill such people.

For the non-religious, progressive mind, the opposite is believed. The non-religious progressive generally believes that it is NOT a matter of rounding up a discreet number of “bad guys.” Instead, by punishing, isolating and killing “bad guys,” we are INCREASING the number of “bad guys” and worsening societal problems.

The striking American failure to reduce the above problems is a testament to the failed, uninformed, authoritarian, violent thinking of the reactionary religious mind. By rejecting the idea that there are social or economic causes for such problems, the reactionary religious mind perpetuates and worsens the problems. For the non-religious progressive, the solutions to the above problems are based on successfully addressing the root causes of the problems. If America remains in the hands of a plutocracy of wealth and anti-intellectual religious ignorance, this nation will remain in an end-of-empire Death Spiral.

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Light Pollution

By Dom Nozzi

There is an “invisible” — yet nevertheless important — quality-of-life issue that communities neglect at their peril. Invisible because it is rarely discussed as a problem.

Light pollution.

Light pollution hides the glorious, romantic stars in the night sky. Such pollution degrades wildlife habitat, and creates a frenzied, “anywhere USA” ambience that kills the authentic, quiet and sleepy charm of a community. Light pollution disrupts sleep for countless people in residential areas.

In my opinion, light pollution has become an epidemic in our county because, increasingly, retailers discover that excessive lighting is a handy way to attract the attention of the 40,000 motorists driving by each day on arterials. It is also a convenient way to evade those pesky local sign ordinances. Sign regulations are evaded in this case because excessive lighting allows the retailer to make her/his entire building a sign at night. It is the “building as sign” problem that we often see — especially with chain retailers.

This is done in at least two ways. First, a retailer lights up their building to make the structural elements on the property are so screamingly visible that we are compelled to look.

As an aside, one could make the point that the light pollution problem often worsens when city engages in more effective enforcement of the city sign ordinance.

A number of newer gas stations will use a high canopy over the fueling stations. The bright, glaring lights underneath the canopy makes the place look, in the words of Jim Kunstler, like a “UFO Landing Strip” which can be seen from miles around. Other retailers like to line their exterior walls or parking lots with lights that spill upward and across property lines.

Of course, retailers who are cited for light pollution are usually indignant, and commonly defend their ability to continue polluting. A frequent ploy is to grab the moral high ground on this issue by claiming that the sole purpose of all this excessive lighting is for “public safety,” or the “safety of customers.” It is claimed that the excessive lighting keeps women and children safe from predators (despite the fact that it has been shown that bright lights will create darker shadows where predators can more easily hide, and that glaring lights can cause traffic accidents).

The result is that citizens and decision-makers often look upon those concerned about light pollution as people who are insensitive to public safety.

It is only a coincidence for the retailer that this “safety” lighting happens to make the entire building a glaring billboard to attract customers. We all know that the only reason for the bright lights by our safety-minded retailers is to promote public safety.

Please.

Controlling light pollution is an important element in retaining a pleasant ambiance for our towns, not to mention the needs of our wildlife and star-gazing public.

_________________________________________________

Visit my urban design website read more about what I have to say on those topics. You can also schedule me to give a speech in your community about transportation and congestion, land use development and sprawl, and improving quality of life.

Visit: www.walkablestreets.wordpress.com

Or email me at: dom[AT]walkablestreets.com

50 Years Memoir CoverMy memoir can be purchased here: Paperback = http://goo.gl/9S2Uab Hardcover =  http://goo.gl/S5ldyF

My book, The Car is the Enemy of the City (WalkableStreets, 2010), can be purchased here: http://www.lulu.com/product/paperback/the-car-is-the-enemy-of-the-city/10905607Car is the Enemy book cover

My book, Road to Ruin, can be purchased here:

http://www.amazon.com/Road-Ruin-Introduction-Sprawl-Cure/dp/0275981290

My Adventures blog

http://domnozziadventures.wordpress.com/

Run for Your Life! Dom’s Dangerous Opinions blog

http://domdangerous.wordpress.com/

My Town & Transportation Planning website

http://walkablestreets.wordpress.com/

My Plan B blog

https://domz60.wordpress.com/

My Facebook profile

http://www.facebook.com/dom.nozzi

My YouTube video library

http://www.youtube.com/user/dnozzi

My Picasa Photo library

https://picasaweb.google.com/105049746337657914534

My Author spotlight

http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/domatwalkablestreetsdotcom

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Are Smart Growth Ideas Still Ahead of Their Time?

By Dom Nozzi

I sometimes get a bit depressed about the fact that many of the walkable, compact, mixed-use planning strategies were being discussed at least 30 years ago.

It would be easy for people to learn that many of the “new” Smart Growth tactics are actually quite old, and just sadly conclude that it is naïve to think such ideas can ever become reality.

However, I believe it is important to keep in mind that, as scientists and engineers know (or should know), the underlying conditions (political, environmental, technological, economic, etc.) are much more critical and influential than “good ideas.” “Good ideas” don’t just magically become adopted because they are good ideas. In other words, lack of good ideas is not our problem (usually). We have plenty of good ideas to save ourselves. But we need to be patient with our ideas and wait for conditions to be ripe.

A couple of examples: Galileo invented the good idea of helicopters, but the idea was not implemented until the underlying conditions were ripe. Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony came up with great ideas about equal rights for women at the turn of the century, but the conditions did not become “ripe” until the 1960s.

We have plenty of good ideas about reining in sprawl or creating compact cities or reforming transportation and land use, but many will not be implemented until the conditions for them are ripe. As a result, one of the most important tasks of those seeking to improve our communities — in both the public and private sector – is to modify underlying conditions so that we accelerate the ripening process. That is largely why I’ve always championed things like user fees, congestion fees, and model traditional developments.

By deciding, democratically, to do these incremental things, we can change underlying conditions that allow people to more easily see the need for positive change. Another way of putting it is that an important role for us in the public sector is to, as economists would put it, “internalize externalities”

For example, instead of having a company increase its profits by emitting polluting emissions from their drain pipe into a river – a form of externality – we charge the company a fee which is high enough to compensate for pollution so that the community will have more money to clean up the pollution. By charging this water pollution fee, we internalize the cost so that the emitting company pays for the pollution to be cleaned up, rather than the overall community (similarly, gas taxes partly internalize the externalities of driving a car so that the motorist pays more for their negative impacts to the community while driving).

After all, the better we internalize such costs, the better capitalism works the way Adam Smith thought it would work. That is because according to Smith, we need all the relevant information before we are able to make rational decisions in the marketplace.

I’ve always lived by the rule that I am a pessimist of the intellect, but an optimist of the will. Our situation as a society seems hopeless in many ways, but giving up is not an option. Persistence pays off. Overall, I’m hopeful because I think we are on the verge of turning things around in various ways (particularly with transportation and land use reform) to the point where positive changes are self-driven, rather than being forced on us by regulations.

_________________________________________________

Visit my urban design website read more about what I have to say on those topics. You can also schedule me to give a speech in your community about transportation and congestion, land use development and sprawl, and improving quality of life.

Visit: www.walkablestreets.wordpress.com

Or email me at: dom[AT]walkablestreets.com

50 Years Memoir CoverMy memoir can be purchased here: Paperback = http://goo.gl/9S2Uab Hardcover =  http://goo.gl/S5ldyF

My book, The Car is the Enemy of the City (WalkableStreets, 2010), can be purchased here: http://www.lulu.com/product/paperback/the-car-is-the-enemy-of-the-city/10905607Car is the Enemy book cover

My book, Road to Ruin, can be purchased here:

http://www.amazon.com/Road-Ruin-Introduction-Sprawl-Cure/dp/0275981290

My Adventures blog

http://domnozziadventures.wordpress.com/

Run for Your Life! Dom’s Dangerous Opinions blog

http://domdangerous.wordpress.com/

My Town & Transportation Planning website

http://walkablestreets.wordpress.com/

My Plan B blog

https://domz60.wordpress.com/

My Facebook profile

http://www.facebook.com/dom.nozzi

My YouTube video library

http://www.youtube.com/user/dnozzi

My Picasa Photo library

https://picasaweb.google.com/105049746337657914534

My Author spotlight

http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/domatwalkablestreetsdotcom

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Filed under Economics, Politics, Sprawl, Suburbia, Urban Design

Recipe for a Vibrant Street

By Dom Nozzi

Dom’s Vibrant Street Casserole (serves…everyone)

Ingredients

  •  Elect wise, courageous leaders (cooks) who are well-versed in the creation of walkable street casseroles.
  • Select a “kitchen” staff that has high-quality knowledge regarding the creation of traditional, walkable street casseroles.
  • Add 4 cups of colorful building facades that abut the streetside sidewalk, with entrances on the sidewalk.
  • Add 3 cups of relatively high residential density on or near the street.
  • Add 4 cups of homes, offices and retail. Mix well. Be sure not to add too much office, as this will lead to a tasteless, boring casserole that is utterly unappetizing at night.
  • Layer 10 cups of on-street parking along the street.
  • Evenly sprinkle 8 cans of shading street trees along your streets and use a loper to limb them up. The trees should be placed along your streets in such as way as to have them be formally aligned. The trees should be spaced and limbed up so as to avoid blocking the view of at least the first floor building facades.
  • Cut and trim your streets so that they are short in block length, have modest turn radii, have square curbs, and are no fatter than 3 lanes of 2-way street (3rd lane is landscaped median with pocket turn lanes). Any street fatter than 3 lanes will need to be put on a diet so that it is no more than 3 lanes. Your street should be designed so that motorists are obligated to drive slowly and attentively.
  • Shape your street buildings for verticality. Your buildings should be at least 2 stories high.
  • Insert 2 tablespoons of street lights and traffic signals into your casserole that are modest in height (no more than 8-12 feet in height).
  • Trim your building lot widths so that they are narrow.
  • Provide a heaping helping of windows on at least the first floor of the buildings for your street casserole. Your casserole should strive for high levels of transparency by having abundant windows eye level. Minimize blank walls on the first floor of your buildings.
  • Add generous portions of streetscaping such as street furniture, and encroachment into the sidewalk by outdoor cafes.
  • Place and shape your sidewalks to offer ample sidewalk width so that there is room for sidewalk cafes, couples comfortably walking side-by-side, and street furniture. Be careful not to provide too much width, as excessive width coupled with insufficient pedestrians will deaden the flavor of your casserole.
  • Chop and mince your signs into modest sizes, modest heights, and do not allow them to be animated.

Bake until your casserole sizzles. Serve immediately.

_________________________________________________

Visit my urban design website read more about what I have to say on those topics. You can also schedule me to give a speech in your community about transportation and congestion, land use development and sprawl, and improving quality of life.

Visit: www.walkablestreets.wordpress.com

Or email me at: dom[AT]walkablestreets.com

50 Years Memoir CoverMy memoir can be purchased here: Paperback = http://goo.gl/9S2Uab Hardcover =  http://goo.gl/S5ldyF

My book, The Car is the Enemy of the City (WalkableStreets, 2010), can be purchased here: http://www.lulu.com/product/paperback/the-car-is-the-enemy-of-the-city/10905607Car is the Enemy book cover

My book, Road to Ruin, can be purchased here:

http://www.amazon.com/Road-Ruin-Introduction-Sprawl-Cure/dp/0275981290

My Adventures blog

http://domnozziadventures.wordpress.com/

Run for Your Life! Dom’s Dangerous Opinions blog

http://domdangerous.wordpress.com/

My Town & Transportation Planning website

http://walkablestreets.wordpress.com/

My Plan B blog

https://domz60.wordpress.com/

My Facebook profile

http://www.facebook.com/dom.nozzi

My YouTube video library

http://www.youtube.com/user/dnozzi

My Picasa Photo library

https://picasaweb.google.com/105049746337657914534

My Author spotlight

http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/domatwalkablestreetsdotcom

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Filed under Miscellaneous, Urban Design, Walking