DESIGN CHANGES FOR LIVABLE URBAN STREETS

The City of Charlotte, North Carolina is in the process of doing a major revision of its design guidelines to create context sensitive streets that address the mobility needs of vehicles, pedestrians and bicyclists. The goal is to create livable streets. The new guidelines will serve as an overlay to the entire range of street categories from thoroughfares to locals. The new typology overlay considers five basic land use related context facility types defined as parkways, boulevards, avenues, main streets and local neighborhood access streets. Each typology is defined to reflect street function and surrounding land uses. Parkways are seen as aesthetically treated roadway conduits with a design priority of moving traffic. In comparison, Main Streets are treated with a design priority of moving pedestrians and providing parking for adjacent development. This change in design philosophy stays in compliance with roadway design standards but addresses the standard engineering need of using 'desirable' values, which in some cases can result in hostile environments for other users. Instead, allowable and minimum standards are used as appropriate to balance user needs to provide a context sensitive street. The resulting guidelines acknowledge that vehicular congestion can be acceptable for specific roadway typologies and unacceptable for others. This emerging design philosophy addresses the need to prioritize tradeoffs in street design to permit roadway corridor elements to fit within constructed right of ways based on their function and land use components. Depending on the facility, sidewalks and planting strips can be more important than additional lanes of traffic or their standard 12-ft widths depending upon modal emphasis. The guidelines address all the elements of basic roadway segments as well as the elements of intersection junctions between similar and different typology facilities.

Language

  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: CD-ROM
  • Features: Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 11p
  • Monograph Title: 2ND URBAN STREET SYMPOSIUM: UPTOWN, DOWNTOWN, OR SMALL TOWN: DESIGNING URBAN STREETS THAT WORK, JULY 28-30, 2003, ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00989171
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, TRB
  • Created Date: Apr 8 2005 12:00AM