10.05.2007

Transit-Oriented Development: A Philadelphia Story

If you've heard of transit-oriented development (TOD), the images in
your mind may be of snooty car-haters with too-cool-for-school glasses
who sign their names in all lower case and free-hand draw their latest
idea for a mixed-use project with elegantly landscaped walkways. But
I'm here to tell you TOD is as authentically Philadelphian as it
comes. The development of this old city, after all, followed the
development of transit lines. Where I live in University City was
nothing but trees until trolley lines connecting the area to Center
City were built.

With little if any investment in the City in the fifty years after
World War II, not only did sites near transit not experience any
renewal, they were the most crumbly around because they were the
oldest. So here you had sites from which you could extract the
notable value resulting from transit access, and they were the most
likely to be in really bad shape.

For the sake of the City's competitiveness, and for the sake of
healthy neighborhoods, we have to turn that around. If you're
interested in finding out more, we're about to publish a report on the
subject, which was commissioned by Neighborhoods Now and paid for in
part by Citibank. We'll be presenting the highlights of the report at
a kickoff at the Cira Centre later this month. RSVP to this free
event, as space is limited and I'm told we're already at standing room
only.

http://www.neighborhoodsnowphila.org/transit/Transit-OrientedDevelopmentSavetheDate.htm

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