Memphis Bike Share Will Be Private, Nonprofit, and Community-Led

​When local companies, organizations, and community-members in Memphis found out that getting a publicly-driven bike share system would be a no-go, they didn’t give up. In fact, they decided to take matters into their own hands. The result of the collaboration is Explore Bike Share, which is setting up for its big launch later this year with 60 stations and 600 bikes. Read more... Read more

Transit is Made for Walking

​ Walkability is one of the keys to high transit ridership, and yet much of the nation’s transit is located in low density, unwalkable places. As a result, the U.S. transit industry faces the need to create “first and last mile” connections to and from transit. Why is walking access to transit important? The easier it is for people to walk to public transportation, the more likely they are to use it. Read more... Read more

Freeway Lids: Reconnecting Communities and Creating New Land for Development

​Interstate 94, which connects Minneapolis and St. Paul, had a devastating impact on urban neighborhoods when it was completed in 1968. Fifty years later, the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) has launched an initiative to redevelop the aging interstate to serve communities as well as cars. MnDOT has proposed building freeway lids at key sites along the I-94 corridor to reestablish street grids and neighborhood connectivity. ULI Minnesota created a comprehensive vision that leverages the power of freeway lids to... Read more

Seattle’s Transportation Transformation

​ For people using mass transit, new services in Seattle have come in quick succession. The city’s first modern streetcar opened in 2007. Light-rail service began operating in 2009, and the first RapidRide route started service in 2010. In 2016 alone, a second streetcar line was launched, and three additional light-rail stations opened, increasing ridership by 75 percent. Seattle residents have voted to tax themselves for urban transportation three times over the past three years. The virtuous circle, however, really... Read more

Denver and Philly Ask Residents: How Do Our Streets Work for You?

N​obody knows the ins and outs of a neighborhood better than the people who live there. Vision Zero planning in Denver and Philadelphia is taking that into account. They’re two of the latest U.S. cities to embrace Vision Zero, by aiming to prevent (or, bring to zero) traffic-related fatalities. Now, as the cities work to sift through the data necessary to shape their targeted infrastructure, enforcement and outreach plans, they’ve both turned to crowdsourcing to capture community concerns about dangerous... Read more

San Francisco Is Redesigning City Hall Plaza Into a Space for All

​San Francisco has planned a slate of new initiatives to transform UN and Civic Center Plazas, and the spaces between them, with inclusivity as a specific goal. Design alone cannot be expected to solve social problems, but thoughtful design can be a part of the solution. Read more... Read more

Erie Urban Farming Plan Must Engage Community

​ Creating an urban agriculture framework complements the Erie Refocused plan, which addresses the city’s future needs in terms of transportation, housing, land use, economic development and other areas, to combat decades of systematic decline. There should be clearly defined goals, such as creating green space, reducing blight, providing education and growing healthy foods for inner-city residents. And city officials, community groups and citizens must collectively discuss the issue, including how best to develop urban farming management plans and what... Read more

Adding Green Space and Value in Houston’s Upper Kirby District

​A $15 million redevelopment of Houston’s Levy Park resurrects a green space that for years was little more than an afterthought. The mid–20th century six-acre park officially reopened in February, 19 months after the park’s reconstruction began. Throughout the day, thousands of people took in a central playground flanked by two large lawns, 30 mature oak trees, rain and community gardens, a dog park, and other elements. All were designed to foster a heavy dose of daily programming such as... Read more

The Growing Influence of Atlanta’s BeltLine

​Residents saw the Beltline plan as a way to harness Atlanta’s rapid growth and strengthen the city’s quality of life—and they were able to create their own pet projects, like farmers markets, bocce ball courts, and a Lantern Parade that grew from 200 participants in 2010 to 75,000 this past year. In turn, local and national organizations like Park Pride and the Trust for Public Land recognized that the BeltLine aligned with their missions, and they helped increase the project’s... Read more
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