March 2008


This wonderful drawing is from the Downtown Precise Plan of Redwood City, California. It show 21 signage types that are commonly encountered in pedestrian-oriented, mixed-use frontages, streets and districts.

The drawings are by Dan Zack, project manager of the city’s community development department. The layout is by Freedman Tung & Bottomley, lead urban design consultant for the Precise Plan.

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In the extended entry, a key to this drawing with short definitions of each sign type from the Downtown Precise Plan.

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The recent study Growing Cooler, coordinated by Smart Growth America and published by the Urban Land Institute, found that “Typically, Americans living in compact urban neighborhoods where cars are not the only transportation option drive a third fewer miles than those in automobile-oriented suburbs…”

On March 10, 2008, the American Public Transit Association released a closely related study that supplemented those findings. APTA’s study, The Broader Connection between Public Transportation, Energy Conservation and Greenhouse Gas Reduction, tackles the same topic from a different direction. It asks, How does the availability of transit affect land use, its energy efficiency, and its greenhouse gas emissions — not only for transit riders but for those who don’t ride transit?

The conclusion: Not only is the land use effect significant, it is major. Below the fold, some excerpts from the study and key findings.

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Image credit: APTA

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