Street Plans traveled to Louisville, KY for the 27th annual Congress for the New Urbanism. During the conference, team members Mike Lydon, Dana Wall, and Ed Janoff led sessions on best practices for asphalt art, creating value through placemaking, and unconventional public engagement strategies using Tactical Urbanism. In advance of the Congress, Street Plans led a CNU Legacy Project workshop in the East Portland neighborhood. Over the course of 2 days, Street Plans met community members to find ways to accelerate improved connectivity within East Portland and look at tactical urbanism solutions that can be implemented in the near future.
Mike Lydon and Dana Wall traveled to the 2019 Urban Resilience Summit in Rotterdam, The Netherlands to lead a demonstration project as a part of the Tactical Urbanism Living Lab, one of 12 on-site conference sessions on Wednesday, July 10th. Street Plans designed a “plaza” to be implemented with duct tape that would define an area to engage both passersby and summit participants in a feedback exercise for a commercial corridor in Rotterdam’s Feijenoord neighborhood. Street Plans laid out the markings for the design, and with summit participants installed the plaza using colorful duct tape in the colors of the city and of the neighborhood’s professional soccer team.
What’s the ROI of Tactical Urbanism? Our friends at State of Place ran an analysis of our recent Asheville Street Tweaks project with Asheville on Bikes and Asheville City Government to find out. While the intervention on Coxe Avenue focused on shared mobility and enhancing walkability, the study showed the impacts were felt far beyond the right of way.
The State of Place index score rose from 42.3 to 71.8, with a projected value capture of $3,510,323, or a return of $23.10 for every dollar invested. Not bad for $150k ($30k worth of paint, planters, and recycled plastic barriers)!
Our best-selling book, Tactical Urbanism: Short-term Action for Long-term Change, was recently translated into Russian by the Strelka Press. Principals Mike Lydon and Tony Garcia were invited to Moscow to celebrate the launch of the 6th volume of the publication series by hosting a lecture about simple but effective guidelines for urban transformation at the Strelka Institute.
Street Plans Principal, Mike Lydon, keynoted an open session for a smart growth series program in Niagara Falls titled “Imagining a More Livable NF.” The program was launched to explore solutions for the future of the City of Niagara Falls centered around the built environment and the livability of the city. The open sessions focused on issues like mobility, housing, and placemaking.
Lydon hosted a session during which he went over the principles of tactical urbanism and its power to create more walkable and livable urban spaces. Attendees had the opportunity to present questions and have an open conversation about how to improve walkability and multi-modal options in the city.
Street Plans principal, Mike Lydon, is quoted in this Coastal Living article about rising community design trends in beach towns. The article highlights trends that create vibrant waterfronts and walkable downtowns. Lydon says that smart street design is key in making places that are walkable and accesible to not just pedestrians and bikes, but also for scooters, electric bikes, and all forms of active mobility.
The article highlights Street Plans’ Tactical Urbanists’s Guide to Materials and Design to encourage city and community leaders to use Tactical Urbanism as a way to advance long-term goals related to street safety, public space, and more in their cities.
Street Plans is in the final stages of finishing Let’s Ride JC, Jersey City’s first bicycle master plan. The project team unveiled the draft plan to the public on April 2nd, which included a large-scale 16’x24′ network map captured by this short Streetfilm. All project documents, included the draft master plan may be accessed here.
Once thought to be an urban design trend, April’s Landscape Architecture Magazine focuses its April issue on the enduring power of Tactical Urbanism. Along with many other colleagues and collaborators, Street Plans’ work is prominently featured in the Magazine’s lead article.
“The appeal of these kinds of interventions is a kind of made-by-hand aesthetic,” Lydon says. “It feels very human. It speaks to people who are not designers in a very important way. Most people who engage with these spaces don’t read Landscape Architecture Magazine. They don’t understand an axial or an aerial plan. But they get the immediacy and the human quality and the materiality.”
As one of the movement’s founders, Mike Lydon recognizes the limits of temporary public space. Tactical urbanism isn’t going to solve issues such as affordable housing, access to transit, and food access, but it can be done in tandem with that, he says. “It’s never about just the one day or the one month of the project, but where we are on the arc of transformation and making political and social change.”
It’s Landscape Architecture month, so the whole issue is free!
Tactical Urbanism is as much about engaging people as it about the physical delivery of better streets and better places. Street Plans is proud to announce that the Southern California Association of Governments’ (SCAG) Go Human Tactical Urbanism Demonstration Events have received a Silver 2019 National Planning Achievement Award for Public Outreach from the American Planning Association.
Alongside partners ALTA Planning + Design, Streetfilms, and Katherine Padilla & Associates, Street Plans developed and implemented 9 Tactical Urbanism demonstration projects as a part of SCAG’s Go Human region-wide safety and encouragement campaign from 2016-2017. The primary goal of the Tactical Urbanism approach to the campaign was to promote region-wide walking and biking, and to allow residents to temporarily experience streets that are designed for people walking, cycling, and using transit.
For all nine projects Street Plans was tasked with assisting with community engagement (TAC meetings, volunteer coordination etc.) and leading the design, materials procurement, and implementation of the demonstration project elements. The temporary treatments allowed event attendees to experience an enhanced walking and biking boulevard, catalyzing momentum towards permanent change in the future.
Alongside a number of community members and project proponents, Mike Lydon shared some of his thoughts for Streetfilms about the Barcelona Superblock, an urban design approach that seeks to return the majority of street space to community use. The innovative approach has captured attention across the globe, garnering more than 80,000 plays in 6 months, making it the Streetfilm of the year!