Which Streetscape Features Best Generate Pedestrian Activity?
An academic publication by Reid Ewing et al, examined which features and elements most effectively encourage pedestrian activity. They found that three of twenty features had a significant impact on ped counts: the proportion of windows on the street, the proportion of active street frontage, and the number of pieces of street furniture. Fascinating and good news for districts who want to know what kinds of street furniture they should invest in! Direct link to publication here (accessible through Aug 31).
Big City Dreaming: The Sometimes Mixed Results of Mixed Use
As the pendulum has swung away from Euclidian zoning toward mixed use, there are some hazards that practitioners should be aware of. For example, too much vacant retail has become the unintended blight of mixed use in smaller urban/suburban areas – “too many cities are insisting on mixed uses in locations that are, at best, suitable for a single use.”
Detroit Bike Culture Is Unstoppable
Two wheels are starting to dominate the scene in the city known for four wheels. Despite the city dealing with bankruptcy and blight, the Motor City of Detroit continues to see a renaissance that expands year after year. A weekly bike meetup, the Slow Roll, now has thousands of riders. The bike lane network will expand to 200 miles. The annual Tour de Troit will have an estimated 7,500 riders this fall. And new bike oriented businesses are sprouting up.