Bringing a Rational Perspective to the Table

4 thoughts on “Bringing a Rational Perspective to the Table”

  1. Good ideas. I’m all for the infill. As the place gets more desirable, the parking will take care of itself.

    And that countryside definitely looks better than Ohio…

  2. Reblogged this on small town urbanism and commented:
    I am working with a group of people to bring Urban3 and Strong Towns to Sonoma County to study the existing development patterns and evaluate the financial productivity of different forms of land use. We hope this will help community officials make better decisions about growth by showing that sprawl is financially counterproductive to our communities. Johnny shares a great explanation here of the physical impact of pre- and post-
    WWII development styles. Enjoy.

  3. I grew up in Sonoma County in the 80s/early 90s. Not in the Wine Country part but rather the trailer trash part of Santa Rosa Avenue and later, a boring cul-de-sac in Rohnert Park. Nowadays, the cute parts (and adjacent) are getting the “Farm to Table” treatment while the ghetto parts are well along in their Hesher to Hispanic transition.

  4. Great pictures for demonstrating how much more pleasant traditional development is.

    I’m more enthusiastic about converting parking lots in the aging suburban locations than in the downtown location. To covert most of the downtown parking lots to buildings would largely cut the downtown off from car customers. That might work, but it might not.

    Filling in the parking lots in these old decaying suburban locations is a total no-brainer, though. You could fill in much of it and still have plenty of parking, partly because parking requirements are usually excessive, and partly because it’s decaying.

    Another thing I’d like to see is to have residential and commercial uses sharing the same parking lots. To a large extent they need the parking at different times so the same amount of parking serves a double use. This can be combined with filling in the old lots – have most of the new construction be residential. That would reduce the peak parking demand, and improve the value of existing commercial by having residents in walking distance.

    Even where I live in a successful area in Orange County CA, there is lots of almost-never-used commercial parking, and almost every commercial lot could be shared with residential use.

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