Architecture and Site Design
Ensure that architectural and site designs in community centers have been designed for walkability.
Centers that include interesting architecture and intimate outdoor spaces for people encourage active transportation, which helps clean our air.
Tool: Require the following streetscape features in order to create walkable streets: street trees, landscaping, windows, active building frontages, and street furniture.
The proportion of windows on the street, the proportion of active street frontage, and the number of pieces of street furniture contribute to pedestrian activity.[i][ii]
- Research paper on streetscape features related to pedestrian activity. http://jpe.sagepub.com/content/early/2015/06/29/0739456X15591585.abstract
Tool: Locate buildings and their front doors on the street.
A building’s street-facing façade defines the type of environment on the street. Blank walls (without windows or doors) are uninviting to pedestrians and make them feel as if they are not meant to walk there. Buildings with inviting entrances that allow passersby to detect active uses inside the building encourage walking.
- Article on how a well-design interface between doors and sidewalks contributes to walkability. http://streets.mn/2014/11/06/front-doors-and-walkable-cities
Tool: Provide lighting along streets, trails and public spaces to promote safety.
The use of appropriate lighting along sidewalks, crosswalks and public spaces creates a safer and more comfortable environment for cyclists and pedestrians. People are encouraged to bike and walk more when they feel safe, especially at night. Lighting requirements should also minimize light pollution.
- Seattle Pedestrian Lighting Citywide Plan http://www.seattle.gov/transportation/pedestrian_masterplan/docs/PedLightingFINAL.pdf
Tool: Develop bicycle parking requirements including long-term bike parking.
Bicycle parking can help elevate bicycling in Provo to become a legitimate and viable transportation option for most trips. Thorough bicycle parking requirements account for both short-term and long-term parking, promote proper siting and layout, and allow for conversion of vehicular parking to bicycle parking.
- The Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals Bicycling Parking Guidelines: http://www.apbp.org/?page=publications
- Salt Lake City’s Bicycle Parking Requirements http://bikeslc.com/GetInvolved/MasterPlansandPolicies/Required%20Bicycle%20Parking.html
- San Francisco’s Bicycle Parking Ordinance http://www.sfbos.org/ftp/uploadedfiles/bdsupvrs/ordinances13/o0183-13.pdf
Tool: Minimize the amount of parking required by new development.
Eliminating minimum parking requirements frees up both land and money for better uses. The construction, maintenance, and land costs associated with providing free or subsidized parking can be used to fund more energy-efficient and environmentally friendly forms of transportation than driving, like public transportation or the construction of bicycle and pedestrian corridors.[iii]
The above graph shows required parking spaces for residences per-occupant, and required parking spaces for office and retail per 1000 square feet of building space.
- Lower parking requirements, California. California passed legislation in October, 2015, “which allows affordable housing developers to build less parking than many local zoning regulations currently permit.” Affordable housing advocates have long claimed that burdensome parking requirements have made affordable housing too expensive to build. http://cal.streetsblog.org/2015/10/12/governor-brown-signs-bill-loosening-parking-requirements-for-affordable-housing/
- Market-driven parking supply, Arkansas. The city of Fayetteville, Arkansas, adopted a change to the parking code that completely eliminated minimum parking requirements for nonresidential properties. This allows businesses to consider their parking needs based on market demand, rather than city code requirements. http://www.fayettevilleflyer.com/2015/10/07/fayetteville-eliminates-minimum-parking-requirements/
Promote urban forestry and gardening on city lands, and in neighborhoods.
Plants naturally filter our air and provide us with oxygen. They also provide additional benefits of beautifying neighborhoods, improving walkability, and providing shade to offset summer cooling costs.
Tool: Encourage green roofs.
Green roofs insulate buildings, help absorb some emissions, and add to the visual interest and beauty of urban areas. This reduces building heating and cooling costs, while reducing emissions, and also filtering storm water runoff.[iv]
- Green roofs, Toronto, Canada. The city’s Green Roof Bylaw requires green roofs on commercial, institutional, and many residential buildings.
Tool: Form an organization to increase the number of trees in Provo.
An organization whose purpose is to increase the number of trees in Provo’s urban forest can help individuals and neighborhoods access funding for purchasing trees.
- Street trees clean the air, increase property values, and make neighborhoods more walkable. http://www.nfs.unl.edu/documents/communityforestry/urbanforestvalues.pdf
- Friends of the Urban Forest, San Francisco. Friends of the Urban Forest (FUF) is a non-profit that provides trees, technical expertise, and labor for neighborhoods and individuals interested in planting street trees. Since 1981, FUF has planted 47% of San Francisco’s total street tree canopy. http://www.fuf.net/
Develop a Design Review Committee Sustainability Plan with an emphasis on air.
The Design Review Committee has a key role to play in cleaning our air, and it has expertise how to make an impact. Consider the roles you might fulfill in cleaning the air and develop a departmental plan for sustainability with an emphasis on air quality. Develop a method for tracking and measuring progress, and a process for annual review.
Urban Design and Active Transportation
[ii] From NACTO Street Design Guide. http://nacto.org/publication/urban-street-design-guide/street-design-elements/sidewalks
[iii] Data from ITE’s Parking Generation, 3rd Edition 2004. Courtesy of Ted Knowlton, Wasatch Front Regional Council.
[v] From NACTO Street Design Guide. http://nacto.org/publication/urban-street-design-guide/streets/neighborhood-main-street/
[vi] Image from Allan Jacobs’ Great Streets.
[vii] From NACTO Street Design Guide. http://nacto.org/publication/urban-street-design-guide/intersection-design-elements/crosswalks-and-crossings/midblock-crosswalks/