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5 2.1 What Is Smart Growth? 2.1.1 Description and Definition Smart growth goals typically focus on environmental stewardship, public health and safety, and economic sustainability. Objectives such as increasing population density, development intensity, infill of brownfields or other underdeveloped urban areas, access to public and/or non-motorized transportation, and specific combinations of land uses are often cited as ways to achieve the goals of smart growth (see Figure 2-1). Although it is difficult to pinpoint the origin of the modern smart growth movement, two key initiatives (begun in the mid-1990s) are often credited. The first was an effort by the American Planning Association (APA), the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and the Henry M. Jackson Foundation to update local land use controls to create smaller and more compact development patterns. In a separate effort, the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and the Surface Transportation Policy Project (STPP) developed a series of measures to assist local and state governments in building walkable development with access to public transportation, called the Smart Growth Toolkit. From there, other public agencies and academic researchers continued to study and promote policy development centered on the benefits of walkable development and social and fiscal costs associated with sprawl (Bengston 2005). From there, several advocacy and professional groups, such as STPP, the Sierra Club, NRDC, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and APA, began publishing reports and connecting with a wide range of supporters and stakeholders, all uniting under a series of smart growth goals and planning principles. According to the EPA, smart growth is a set of approaches with the goal of creating and maintaining socially, economically, and environmentally sustainable places based on the following 10 basic principles (USEPA 2014): 1. Mix land uses; 2. Take advantage of compact building design; 3. Create a range of housing opportunities and choices; 4. Create walkable neighborhoods; 5. Foster distinctive, attractive communities with a strong sense of place; 6. Preserve open space, farmland, natural beauty, and critical environmental areas; 7. Strengthen and direct development toward existing communities; 8. Provide various transportation choices; 9. Make development decisions predictable, fair, and cost-effective; 10. Encourage community and stakeholder collaboration in development decisions. These principles broadly address the attributes that many communities want to emulate. Smart Growth America, an advocacy group that helps communities across the country with C h a p t e r 2 Planning for Smart Growth
6 Guide for Integrating Goods and Services Movement by Commercial Vehicles in Smart Growth environments coalition building, policy development, and smart growth research, identifies eight key areas that smart growth practices can help improve for any community (Smart Growth America 2016): â¢ Housing. Throughout the United States, demand is increasing for homes in walkable neigh- borhoods. Residents benefit when communities have a range of housing options and choices to accommodate different incomes. This can include single-family homes, duplexes, apartments, condominiums, and lofts of all sizes. Smart growth strategies can help meet market demand, stabilize home prices, create more housing choices for more people, and reduce overall housing and transportation costs for residents. â¢ Business. Local businesses of all sizes can flourish in smart growth environments with a size- able workforce, access to multiple transportation options, and a vibrant downtown. More Americans want to work and live in communities with these attributes, which, in turn, helps businesses stay competitive and market themselves to a changing customer base. Smart growth strategies can help boost foot traffic, help recruit and retain employees, improve efficiency, raise commercial property values, and create a stronger local economy. â¢ Jobs. Smart growth is great for jobs: it can both create jobs and help workers find those jobs, regardless of the job type or skill level required. By contrast, communities with excessive sprawl and limited public transportation options make it difficult for workers to find and access quality jobs. Smart growth strategies can help workers get to jobs faster and more effi- ciently and has been shown to create more jobs per dollar invested on smart growth projects like transit, as well as create more medium-wage and green jobs. â¢ Economic Prosperity. Achieving economic prosperity requires success in several aspects of a community, including jobs, business, transportation, and affordable housing options. This is because these are all interdependent parts critical to building and maintaining a strong local economy. Research has found that in many communities, the combined cost of trans- portation and housing makes up more than half of the average household budget, which is an overwhelming burden on many low-income families. Smart growth strategies benefit both municipal and household budgets through a solid transportation network and increased property values, in addition to adding value for both businesses and jobs. â¢ Transportation. Various transportation options help accommodate more travelers and create better options for accessing homes, jobs, stores, and entertainment. Options can include expanding the network to include buses, subways, trolleys, light rail, street cars, and ferries, Figure 2-1. Example of a mixed-use infill community in New Jersey with residential above retail development (Source: New Jersey Future).
planning for Smart Growth 7 instead of focusing on roads for personal vehicles. Smart growth also allows more trips by bicycle and foot because of shorter trip distances. This approach often helps concentrate development and reduces infrastructure costs. Smart growth transportation strategies create economic opportunity, make roads safer, are more efficient, and reduce congestion. â¢ Environment. Transportation options, land use, and open space decisions have long-term effects on the natural environment. Ensuring that air, water, and natural habitats are protected benefits the entire community. Smart growth strategies can result in cleaner air and water, as well as protected wildlife and valuable environmental areasâall of these benefit local economies. â¢ Public Health. Many of the aforementioned benefits of smart growth planning result in a healthier place to live. Ensuring that streets are safe for bicyclists and pedestrians allows people to stay active as part of their daily routines. Environmental benefits, such as clean water and air, help residents stay healthy and reduce the risk of disease or illness. Smart growth strategies make walking and bicycling easier, reduce congestion and air pollution, protect drinking water, ensure inclusive development to protect low-income and minority communities, and make streets safer for both drivers and pedestrians. â¢ Revitalization. The suburbanization movement in the 1960s and 1970s resulted in devel- opment along the fringe of existing downtowns, resulting in the stark decline of Americaâs main streets and central neighborhoods. Smart growth advocates are pushing for communi- ties to reinvest in abandoned storefronts, industrial buildings, and urban waterfronts to take advantage of the economic potential of these structures. Smart growth strategies can help find new uses for developed land parcels (particularly abandoned properties and brownfield sites), repair existing infrastructure, and engage the community. Smart growth principles can be manifest in various planning, design, and operational strat- egies and applied in different contexts and communities in all regions of the United States. Proponents of smart growth strategies suggest them as a way to responsibly develop previously undeveloped land, or âgreenfields,â and reuse already-developed land (Richards 2014). Infill development consistent with smart growth principles is often credited with revitalizing urban cores where population growth had been stagnant or declining since the middle of the 20th cen- tury (Coes No Date). A form-based code (FBC) is one of many tools that can be used to advance smart growth prin- ciples. FBC is a type of zoning system concerned largely with the physical form of development, rather than its use, in contrast to traditional Euclidean zoning practices, which focus primarily on use. The primary differences between these zoning techniques are shown in Table 2-1 (Michigan Association of Planning 2007). FBC can make it easier to develop mixed-use areas, especially in redevelopment of urban areas. FBC prescribes the physical form and circulation, allowing uses to change as the area evolves, so long as the form and/or streetscape specifications are followed. Euclidean (Conventional) Zoning Characteristics FBC Characteristics Ã® Use-based Ã® Focus on separating land uses and uniformity through regulation Ã® Development of a particular parcel or lot Ã® Emphasis on building and lot aesthetics Ã® Tends to prohibit development deemed inappropriate or unattractive Ã® Place-based Ã® Focus on creating livable communities through a mixture of compatible uses Ã® Development of a community through individual buildings and streetscapes Ã® Emphasis on streetscape and holistic integration Ã® Tends to articulate desired urban form and encourage interactive design elements Table 2-1. Key differences between Euclidean and form-based code (FBC) zoning techniques.
8 Guide for Integrating Goods and Services Movement by Commercial Vehicles in Smart Growth environments Another tool that supports smart growth is the movement for Complete Streets (see Figure 2-2), which advocates for design and operations strategies that improve safety and access for all people, including pedestrians, cyclists, motorists, and transit users, regardless of age, abilities, or transportation mode. The goal is to design transportation facilities to a human scale, instead of the turning dimensions of a large âdesign vehicle,â thereby calming motor vehicle traffic and safely accommodating all users. Various operations and design techniques are used to achieve Complete Streets goals, including marked or protected bicycle lanes, reduced number and/or width of motor vehicle lanes, crosswalk treatments intended to improve pedestrian visibility and safety, and pavement markings or other treatments to facilitate safe transit operations. Proponents point to data suggesting that Complete Streets policies improve safety by reducing collision rates and the number and severity of injuries, encourage multimodal travel, and support local economies by improving property values and boosting local employment (Millard and Burnell 2014; Roth, Gillette, and Hart 2014; Hardy 2014; Smart Growth America 2015). 2.1.2 Goods and Services Transportation in Urban Environments In smart growth environments, as in other types of communities, goods movement and service vehicles are necessary to support economic activity and a desirable quality of life. Trucks are an intrinsic part of this reality and support the operating efficiency of brick-and-mortar shops, e-commerce, construction, waste management, and many other necessary industries. Freight-generating industries (e.g., manufacturing, wholesale trade, warehousing and distri- bution, and multimodal freight nodes) are often close to residential areas, especially in urban environments. However, growth pressures have displaced some freight-intensive businesses to more remote locations. These sectors are important to the national economy; in 2013, 12.1% of gross domestic product (GDP) in the United States was from manufacturing activity, 6% from wholesale trade, 5.8% from retail trade, and 2.9% from transportation and warehousing activities (BEA 2013). Additionally, at the start of 2015, about 12 million people were employed in manu- facturing, 6 million in wholesale trade, nearly 16 million in retail trade, and nearly 5 million in transportation and warehousing (DOL/BLS 2015). Manufacturing, trade, and warehousing activities are not strictly legacy industries; some businesses within these sectors are attracted to smart growth communities. Examples of these businesses include artisanal food and goods production, restaurants and markets, breweries, and makerspaces. These businesses can flourish Figure 2-2. Rendering of a Complete Street in Hoboken, NJ (Source: New Jersey Future).
planning for Smart Growth 9 in urban areas with a high supply of loft and warehousing space, which can be found in locations such as Brooklyn, NY, and Baltimore, MD. Eliminating these facilities from the urban environment will redistribute job locations and tax revenue from central cities to suburban or rural fringes and can increase traffic and emis- sions associated with serving metropolitan customers from facilities farther afield. Moreover, if the freight-generating industries relocate to suburban or rural areas, they will also be further from their customers, as well as their employees. Goods movement can inflict negative environ- mental effects on neighbors, especially residential areas. Solutions that avoid or mitigate these effects while accommodating the economic and quality-of-life benefits that rely on goods and service vehicles movement will best serve the human, environmental, and economic aspects of sustainability and smart growth. For this report, trucks are categorized into two groups: commercial vehicles and service vehicles. Commercial vehicles are used to carry goods and fare-paying passengers, including long-haul trucks, local delivery trucks/vans, garbage trucks, postal trucks, UPS trucks, and moving vans (see Figures 2-3 through 2-5). Service vehicles are vehicles used to transport employees, tools, equipment, and supplies to or from a job location, and include vehicles used by contractors, construction vehicles, emergency vehicles, and utility vehicles. Figure 2-3. US Route 9 and Main Street, Tarrytown, NY (Source: Cambridge Systematics). Figure 2-4. Warehouse delivery in Baltimore, MD (Source: Cambridge Systematics).
10 Guide for Integrating Goods and Services Movement by Commercial Vehicles in Smart Growth environments Commercial/service vehicles traveling within, through, and next to communities typically fulfill one of three primary trip purposes: 1. Traveling to or from a freight-generating facility in the midst of a smart growth commu- nity to deliver or pick up goods. Communities with goals to incorporate smart growth prin- ciples in redevelopment plans are often situated near freight-generating or freight-handling facilities (e.g., a manufacturing facility, warehouse or distribution center, rail yard, or marine terminal). Trucks traveling to and from the freight-generating facility may have to travel through or pass the perimeter of smart growth communities and may use streets primarily designed for pedestrian, bicycle, and automobile traffic in the process. Those streets may also be lined with residential, retail, and/or entertainment or other uses that may be sensitive to noise, vibration, emissions, and other external effects of truck movement. Trucks waiting to enter the facility and idling vehicles create additional noise and air pollution, even though they are mostly stationary. 2. Commercial vehicles delivering goods or services to businesses and residents in the smart growth community. These commercial vehicles perform many duties (e.g., delivery to restaurants, retail establishments, businesses, and residents) and include waste collection vehicles, utility service vehicles, construction or renovation vehicles, and moving trucks. Many business establishments in smart growth environments are small retailers, restaurants, and other businesses that receive deliveries using small box trucks or delivery vans, and rarely, if ever, need to receive a tractor-trailer. Larger or national chain establishments (e.g., large chain supermarkets, hardware stores, and big-box retailers) are more likely to receive deliveries from a tractor-trailer that is delivering shipments to multiple store locations in a city or region. These vehicles must travel not only on the collector, arterial, and highway roadways, but sometimes on residential streets to get as close as possible to where services are needed. Curbside loading areas may be sufficient for businesses that receive shipments from box trucks or delivery vans, and for occasional deliveries from tractor-trailers. If businesses receive frequent deliveries from tractor-trailers, especially in busy commercial districts where curb- side parking is heavily used, an off-street loading area or loading dock may be desired. Street and lane widths, turning radii, and parking and loading areas that can accommodate freight and services uses while supporting other road users are important to consider when planning for freight in smart growth environments. 3. Commercial vehicles traveling on highways or major roadways that pass through or next to the smart growth community (see Figure 2-6). Highways or arterial roadways Figure 2-5. Construction services performed in Cincinnati, OH (Source: Cambridge Systematics).
planning for Smart Growth 11 are often the primary access routes to or from nearby freight-generating facilities (e.g., clusters of manufacturing or warehousing, marine terminals, or rail yards or terminals). If alternate routes are not available for diverting trucks trips to or from these facilities, planners can use strategies to avoid or mitigate potential effects on the residents and businesses in the smart growth community. State highways pose a particular issue in that, while they are often the âmain streetâ through smaller villages and towns, they may carry a large percentage of truck traffic, including potentially oversize and overweight shipments, because they also are often major freight routes. Design decisions for state highways may be made outside the local government agency responsible for making land use plans and site plan reviews (USEPA 2012). For each of these three trip purposes, commercial and service vehicles may idle while waiting to complete a pickup or delivery. 2.1.3 Smart Growth Classifications Smart growth strategies have been applied in communities of varying sizes throughout the United States and beyond. Six smart growth environments have been identified by the research team and affirmed by the literature review and interviews. Table 2-2 presents the current classification scheme, along with a list of key commercial/service vehicle and goods movement issues found in each class and examples of communities that possess the characteristics of the classification. The six smart growth environment classifications are as follows: Industrial areas transitioning to housing and entertainment districts; Working waterfronts transitioning to mixed-use and/or recreation; Older commercial and neighborhood areas being revitalized; Retrofitting aging commercial corridors; Figure 2-6. Trucks passing by neighborhoods in Los Angeles, CA (Source: Cambridge Systematics).
12 Guide for Integrating Goods and Services Movement by Commercial Vehicles in Smart Growth environments Greenfield new communities; and Large-scale reconstruction. Some classifications are more likely to be found in urban core areas, while others are more likely to be found in suburban or rural areas. A visualization tool commonly used to illustrate the gradient in development intensity from rural areas to urban areas is the rural-to-urban transect. The transect includes zones that range from undeveloped natural areas to urban cores, including rural, suburban, general urban, and urban center zones in between. It can serve as a Classification Common Commercial/Service Vehicle and Goods Movement Issues to Consider 1. Industrial areas transitioning to housing and entertainment districts Ã® Continuing function of freight- dependent industry as roads are reconfigured to accommodate more people walking, driving, biking, and using transit. Ã® A decrease in industry will lessen its influence in design and function of the area. Ã® Brady Arts District, Tulsa, OK Ã® South Downtown, Los Angeles, CA Ã® Lower Downtown (LoDo), Denver, CO Ã® Inner Eastside, Portland, OR Ã® Harbor Point, Baltimore, MD Ã® Dogpatch, San Francisco, CA 2. Working waterfronts transitioning to mixed-use and/or recreation Ã® Addressing the competition for access to the waterfront for industrial versus recreational, residential, and entertainment purposes. Ã® MIZOD, Baltimore, MD Ã® Port of Seattle, Seattle, WA Ã® Ballard Neighborhood, Seattle, WA Ã® Port of Bridgeport, Bridgeport, CT Ã® Port of Portland/S Portland, Portland, ME Ã® Port of Boston/South Boston, Boston, MA 3. Older commercial and neighborhood areas being revitalized Ã® Existing prewar neighborhood could see growth in need for deliveries to new commercial enterprises. Ã® Concerns about noise, street design, and safety. Ã® Northeast, Portland, OR Ã® NoMa, Washington, DC Ã® Canton, Baltimore, MD Ã® Northwest, Portland, OR Ã® Main Street, Burlington, IA 4. Retrofitting aging commercial corridors Ã® Road diets, access management, conversion of parking lots to buildings may affect freight needs. Ã® Planning for continued through- movement while enhancing walkability. Ã® Deliveries to new restaurants, retail, and apartments. Ã® MLK Boulevard, Portland, OR Ã® Colfax Avenue, Denver, CO Ã® Long Beach Boulevard, Long Beach, CA Ã® Chicago (various corridors), IL Ã® Columbia Pike, Arlington, VA Ã® H Street, Washington, DC Ã® Raymond Avenue, Poughkeepsie, NY Ã® Glen Street (US 9), Glens Falls, NY 5. Greenfield new communities Ã® Planning at the beginning of a project to identify routes and access ways for all modes. Could include separate routes for freight and deliveries. Ã® Orenco Station, Portland, OR Ã® Daybreak, South Jordan, UT Ã® Celebration, FL Ã® Issaquah Highlands, WA 6. Large-scale Reconstruction Ã® Fitting into existing networks, often using aging malls, rail yards, and airports. Ã® âGateway Mallâ TOD, Salt Lake City, UT Ã® Stapleton airport redevelopment, Denver, CO Ã® Mueller airport, Austin, TX Ã® Ville Bois, Portland, OR Ã® Belmar, Lakewood, CO Examples Table 2-2. Smart growth classifications.
planning for Smart Growth 13 basis for FBC zoning that emphasizes neighborhood structure, walkable streets, and other smart growth principles (Center for Applied Transect Studies 2014). Figure 2-7 shows where each of the six smart growth environment classifications is in the rural- urban transect. Industrial areas transitioning to housing and entertainment districts are most likely to be found in urban and suburban environments. Working waterfront areas that are transitioning to mixed-use are rarely found in the urban core zone, but are common in the urban center and general urban zones. Older commercial and neighborhood areas being revitalized are usually in urban center, general urban, and, in some cases, suburban zones. Commercial corridors are typically found outside the urban core and urban center zones, in the general urban, suburban, and occasionally in the rural zones. Greenfield new communities are almost always developed in the rural and sub- urban zones, because previously undeveloped land is rarely available in urban areas. Large-scale reconstructions typically occur in any of the three urban zones, but may be found in the T3 Suburban Zone as well. Industrial Areas Transitioning to Housing and Entertainment Districts Urban populations in the United States are growing as younger individuals, cou- ples, and the older Baby Boomer generation, especially active empty-nesters, seek Figure 2-7. Relationship of each smart growth classification to the rural-to-urban transect (Source: Center for Applied Transect Studies, enhanced by Cambridge Systematics). Example: Dogpatch Neighborhood The Dogpatch neighborhood in San Francisco, CA, is an industrial and commercial area with historic residential housing. It is undergoing a transition because waterfront space throughout the city is prime for redevelopment. The San Francisco Planning Department seeks to maintain the historical pattern of development by keeping businesses small, maintaining small-scale residential buildings, and restricting the capacity and ability to increase freight generation in the area. This strategy has helped preserve the off-beat character and working- class roots of Dogpatch, while supporting new types of businesses and maintaining a high quality of life for residents.
14 Guide for Integrating Goods and Services Movement by Commercial Vehicles in Smart Growth environments to live in mixed-use, higher density environments. A 2012 study conducted by the American Planning Association (APA) found that 56% of millennials and 46% of active Baby Boomers would prefer to live in a walkable community rather than an area that requires driving to most places (APA 2014). This trend is creating demand for more residential and commercial space in cities, and, as a result, many industrial areas in the urban core are transitioning to residen- tial and commercial uses. Older industrial sites occupy some of the prime locations in cities, especially along waterfronts and/or close to downtown districts that developers of residential and mixed-use communities desire. Smart growth principles (e.g., mixed-use development, pedestrian-scale design, compact buildings, and various transportation choices) are all viable in these locations. Complete Streets strategies that promote roadways designed to accommodate the needs of all users are also desirable. Several issues are associated with transitioning industrial areas. For example, former industrial sites may contain contamination that requires mitigation prior to redevelopment. These sites, known as brownfields, can add significant delays and costs to the process. This shift of use also creates conflict between industrial and residential/commercial uses. For example, Figure 2-8 illus- trates conflict between a residential building and a neighboring freight line. New industry cannot move to an urban area if the land is not zoned and available. Additionally, land with existing uses may experience price increases due to conversion of surrounding parcels. Finally, new develop- ment can be incompatible with existing freight uses. If an entire area undergoes this transition, remaining freight uses may be forced to relocate. Smart growth solutions may also interfere with freight access in these types of neighbor- hoods. For example, Complete Streets treatments often include bulb outs, curb extensions, or other techniques meant to reduce vehicle travel speed and decrease the amount of space that pedestrians need to cross. If not designed correctly, such treatments can impede commercial/ service vehicle turning movements or take away needed curbside unloading zones. The con- cerns of existing and potential freight generators must be considered when land use changes are proposed. The implementation of smart growth development need not hinder the ability of freight to exist and prosper in urban settings. In some areas, the tradeoff between restrict- ing some freight access and increasing mobility for other modes may be accepted, because the Figure 2-8. Recently developed residential buildings surround a cement plant in Dogpatch, San Francisco, CA (Source: Dave R. âIllinois Street 12-2015.â Online image. Flickr. December 18, 2015. https://c2.staticflickr.com/ 1/598/23532496449_edeb98a01b_b.jpg).
planning for Smart Growth 15 benefits for other modes may outweigh increased costs to freight. Communities and freight providers must work together to determine how best to resolve this conflict. Working Waterfronts Transitioning to Mixed-Use and/or Recreation Waterfront real estate is valuable, not only to developers seeking to create smart growth environments but also to industries that require water access for transpor- tation or manufacturing uses. Historically, industries positioned themselves along waterfronts to gain easy access to transportation. However, the dominant transpor- tation modes have shifted from water to roadways and railways, and manufactur- ing has sharply declined throughout the United States since the mid-20th century. In many areas, this trend has led to industry leaving the waterfront, resulting in vacant parcels now targeted for redevelopment. This transition is an opportunity to use adaptive reuse techniques. Rather than demolish old industrial structures to make way for new commercial or residen- tial uses, adaptive reuse focuses on rehabilitating and converting older buildings to serve new purposes. This strategy helps maintain the aesthetics of historic waterfront districts, even if their function has expanded beyond strictly industrial uses. Figure 2-9 depicts the results of efforts to redevelop the waterfront district in Baltimore, MD, to accommodate tourism, entertainment, and other outdoor activities. Similar to the first smart growth classification, the interaction of historic freight-generating uses with newer mixed-use or recreation activities can lead to conflict in waterfront districts. Repurposing land for its highest and best use is attractive to private developers, because residential and commercial proper- ties typically generate higher land values than industrial uses. When residential, commercial, or recreational uses encroach on a waterfront industrial cluster, several issues can arise. For example, increasing land values and conflicts with new neighbors over noise, traffic, and other issues often create tension among users. This can result in the sale and relocation of industrial uses to locations where pressures are not present. The use of these vacated industrial parcels subsequently changes to residential or commercial, which increases the pres- sure on the remaining industrial uses. Incompatible uses adjacent to freight, street designs that do not accommodate freight use, and brownfield mitigation concerns are other potential issues that must be addressed. Older Commercial and Neighborhood Areas Being Revitalized Smart growth can improve commercial and neighborhood locations in need of development. Small commercial zones near residential neighborhoods stag- nated in the 1960s and 1970s as decline brought on mass suburbanization and disinvestment in downtown communities. Many of these pre-war neighborhoods are being revitalized because they were built in a form that lends itself to the principles of smart growth. Indeed, one of the principles listed by the EPA is to âstrengthen and direct development toward existing communities.â The compact nature of these areas also makes them attractive for transit expansion due to their dense, mixed-use environment, which also fulfills a smart growth principle. Example: MIZOD The City of Baltimore instituted the Maritime Industrial Zone Overlay District (MIZOD) to preserve existing industrial uses near the Inner Harbor in the face of demand for conversion to commercial and residential properties. This zoning protects waterfront land with deep-water drafts from nonindustrial development, while allowing areas outside of MIZOD to transition to residential or commercial use. Domino Sugar is cited as an industrial tenant successfully retained in Baltimore Harbor, partially due to MIZOD. Thought it has been found that the tax base benefit resulting from residential redevelopment may not be substantial enough to make up for the lost industrial and revenue-generating land, the districtâs expiration date was extended from 2014 to 2024 (APA 2014). Despite MIZODâs shortcomings, it has helped retain the Portâs businesses and industrial facilities while allowing for the development of premium housing and waterfront condos. Revitalized due to its excellent transportation options and access to downtown Washington, DC, NoMA (North of Massachusetts Avenue) has seen an explosion of new residences and office buildings congregating near an infill transit stop. It was developed with financial contributions from the Federal and DC governments and with significant input from the private sector. The area is roughly 50% built out with room to grow. Adaptive reuse is a key concern in order to retain the look and function of older industrial buildings. There is also a freight rail corridor in the neighborhood that may create conflict as the area builds out. It is crucial for planners to monitor NoMAâs growth potential while preserving its original character and managing freight uses appropriately to foster a high quality of life for residents. Example: NoMA
16 Guide for Integrating Goods and Services Movement by Commercial Vehicles in Smart Growth environments Figure 2-9. Waterfront View and Maritime Industrial Overlay District from Baltimore City Department of Planning (Source: [top] Cameron Rogers. âBaltimore Waterfront.â Online image. August 5, 2005. https://www. flickr.com/photos/dumbyellowdog/272738592. [bottom] Baltimore City Planning and the Waterfront Center).
planning for Smart Growth 17 Much of the development occurring in these communities is considered âinfill,â which aims to use land within developed areas for construction or redevelopment, instead of looking for larger undeveloped tracts, helping to fill in the gaps of the dense, vibrant, and distinctive neigh- borhoods that developed prior to World War II (see Figure 2-10). Infill development is also critical to raising home values, because a single dilapidated structure or vacant property on a dense street can reduce values for all. As these urban neighborhoods are rejuvenated and repopulated, freight demand rises. Newly reopened storefronts must receive deliveries of goods to sell, restaurants must receive food and beverage deliveries, and new residents receive shipments of goods ordered online. Freight conflicts can exist in older commercial and neighborhood areas as a result of the increased commercial vehicle traffic. If road capacity, park- ing availability, and pedestrian safety are not evaluated prior to expansion, the additional commercial vehicles can overwhelm smaller communities. Furthermore, e-commerce is continuing to grow in the United States and requires direct delivery to customers, who are typically in residential areas. If these compact neighborhoods attract new residents, the number of deliv- ery trips is likely to rise as businesses continue to expand their online shop- ping capabilities. Commercial or service vehicles in these areas can generate noise and emissions. Also, the design of many streets in older neighbor- hoods may predate the automobile and may not safely accommodate trucks, especially large tractor-trailers. This issue can be mitigated by the use of smaller delivery vehicles and non-motorized vehicles, such as cargo cycles, or by delivering shipments to a centralized delivery center. Retrofitting Aging Commercial Corridors Two types of aging commercial corridors are candidates for smart growth policies. The first type is a commercial strip (in an urban setting) that failed as population shifted to suburban areas. The development of malls and shopping centers outside of cities contributed to this decline, because people could fulfill all of their shopping needs at a single location instead of relying Figure 2-10. Infill development, REI community space in NoMa, Washington, DC (Source: Ted Eytan. âREI Community Space at Noma.â Online image. August 4, 2015. https://c3.staticflickr.com/1/456/ 20472252106_6577607d6a_b.jpg). Example: Harrisonburg Harrisonburg, in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, has approximately 49,000 residents and is at the crossroads of US 11 and US 33. Downtown revitalization began in 2002 during discussions about creating a pedestrian mall. Ultimately, Main Street remained open to traffic, but investment has bolstered the downtown core. The city has adopted and is implementing new streetscape designs and has adopted a truck route system to move through trucks around the downtown core. As a result of its efforts, the city of Harrisonburg was awarded the Great American Main Street Award in 2014 for its success in boosting downtown housing, redeveloping historic buildings, and creating economic incentives for local businesses (Envision Freight 2015). The city has benefited economically while fostering livability for residents.
18 Guide for Integrating Goods and Services Movement by Commercial Vehicles in Smart Growth environments on multiple, smaller vendors. The completion of the Interstate Highway System also hurt these areas, because drivers could bypass busy routes entirely, thereby decreasing traffic near local businesses. Denverâs Colfax Avenue is an example of this phenomenon. Colfax Avenue was a bustling commercial corridor for years until the completion of I-70, which diverted most road traffic off Colfax and led to lost businesses and abandoned properties. The second type of aging commercial corridor reflects the opposite situation. In some parts of the country, population has begun to shift from suburban communities back to urban com- munities, which has prompted businesses to leave suburban strip malls in favor of downtown retail space. Abandoned strip mall structures are on large lots with ample parking, providing a redevelopment opportunity for revitalized shopping and entertainment in suburban smart growth communities. Both types of commercial corridors present challenges for smart growth: â¢ The corridors are typically auto-centric, with limited accommodations for pedestrians, bicyclists, or transit users. â¢ These corridors often have large parking lots facing the street that disrupt compact design and walkability within the vicinity. â¢ The corridors were designed for a single commercial use without easy connections to other types of development. Smart growth techniques that could fix these issues include road diets, conversion of com- mercial spaces into mixed-use development, and infill development of expansive parking areas see Figure 2-11. Technological developments can also help reduce the effects of this type of land use. For example, streetlights can use solar power and reduce light pollution; reflective asphalt and concrete can reduce heat islands and glare from the sun; and concrete blended with other materials can absorb nitrogen oxide from the environment and reduce air pollution. Similar to previous classifications, redevelopment of a commercial area may lead to increased commercial vehicle traffic as new stores, restaurants, and businesses grow. Designs for street diets and access management plans, which limit the number of access points from road- ways to parking areas, can create conflicts for commercial or service vehicles if specific needs such as congestion, geometry issues, and sight restrictions are not considered. This becomes Figure 2-11. Retrofitted commercial corridor in Cathedral City, CA (Source: Freedman Tung + Sasaki Urban Design).
planning for Smart Growth 19 an even more acute issue if the route is a major freight corridor and/or part of the oversize/overweight network, where access for larger commercial vehicles must be maintained. Greenfield New Communities Smart growth construction is not limited to previously occupied areas. Greenfieldsâareas that have not been previously developed in any wayâcan be the site of new master-planned communities. Development in greenfield environ- ments, however, represents an expansion of the urbanized area, contributing to sprawl and associated environmental issues. Development of greenfields may not be desired in many regions, but when and where appropriate, the development can and ought to adhere to the tenets of smart growth. These sites can be designed to incorporate smart growth principles in brand new developments with multiple transportation choices, a mix of land uses, a strong sense of place, and a range of living options, while preserving and providing easy access to open space. One advantage that this type of development enjoys compared to redevelopment of already-developed areas is a lack of constraints imposed by existing structures or land uses. There are also no issues with contaminants in the land or soil. Devel- opers can take advantage of this flexibility to design locations to allow easier access for freight than might be possible at other sites. For example, they can include adequate entrance/egress, loading and parking areas, and access management. They can also group freight-reliant uses in a specific area and design access streets in those corridors or zones to accommodate freight while other streets can provide bicycle, pedestrian, or transit access. Although greenfield new communities typically do not include industrial uses, commercial and residential establishments will still require freight services. Plans at the beginning of the development should include access to and routes for freight deliveries to all types of land-users. Unlike in already developed zones, these planned communities can separate freight traffic from other forms of transportation, either by creating separate streets or alleys, or through distribution centers or other techniques Example: Orenco Station Orenco Station (see Figure 2-12) in Hillsboro, OR, is a transit-oriented master-planned neighborhood on the formerly vacant site of the Oregon Nursery Company. The community was able to come to fruition due to the planning and development of the light rail extension to the area. The suburban location has significant levels of transit use and a mix of residential and commercial property on 209 acres of land. Smart growth principles enacted on this site include zoning requirements that foster a pedestrian- friendly environment and maintain many architectural features of the former company town, resulting in a distinct neighborhood with character. There are many successful businesses in the downtown, and ensuring efficient freight deliveries is key to remaining successful with minimal disruptions to health and public safety. In the years following its development, Orenco Station has supported a mix of residential units, high levels of pedestrian safety and walkability, and various small businesses. It is a prime example of a community that balances the needs of business and residents (National Trust for Historic Preservation 2014). Figure 2-12. Streetscaping in Orenco Station, OR, a greenfield new community (Source: Cambridge Systematics).
20 Guide for Integrating Goods and Services Movement by Commercial Vehicles in Smart Growth environments that limit large truck access but still allow freight to move via other modes. Connections to the wider freight transportation network must be consid- ered as well. However, communities must not become âislandsâ separated from other development where freight deliveries could become prohibi- tively expensive. Large-Scale Reconstruction Some large-scale sites present the opportunity for a master-planned community adjacent to an already developed area. Examples of this include large shopping malls, old military bases, railyards, and defunct airports. Smart growth principles similar to the new greenfield commu- nities can be incorporated into the design, given the large size of the site, but developers can establish better connectivity with the urban environ- ment in a large-scale reconstruction setting. Most reconstructions of this nature include transit-oriented development (TOD), a mix of uses, design for the pedestrian scale, and a wide range of housing choices. The potential for contamination from previous uses (e.g., fuel leaks at an airport site) are a potential problem in this type of smart growth clas- sification and must be mitigated or resolved prior to the introduction of new communities. Similar to the greenfield developments discussed above, these planned communities should incorporate freight concerns in their design. Because they are more likely to be near existing development, they may include industrial uses in the community or adjacent areas. This adds a freight-generating dimension that may not be present in the greenfield sites. Site design guidelines, buffering requirements, and extensive contact between poten- tial businesses and other uses such as âgood neighbor policiesâ will help mitigate issues. Good neighbor policies encourage increasing communication to make sure the needs of both freight users and residents are acknowledged, promoting hiring within the commu- nity, attending public outreach events, and other communication strategies. Good neighbor policies can also include potential operational changes or mitigation strategies by the freight user to reduce complaints from neighbors and other issues. Operational changes can include drapes to conceal light at loading docks, separate power supplies to provide cooling without running the engine on a truck, or alternative fueled vehicles for trucks that enter/exit a facility frequently (Strauss-Wieder 2003). 2.2 Stakeholders, Relationships, and Opportunities for Coordination A broad range of public- and private-sector stakeholders are involved in planning, designing, building, and managing day-to-day transportation operations in smart growth environments. Although municipalities retain most of the authority governing land use planning and zoning, other stakeholders can be involved and influence those activities. The balance of this section describes the organizations involved and, in general, the activities in which they can play leading or supporting roles in integrating goods and services movement in smart growth environments. Although conflicts can arise among stakeholders during planning, smart growth advocates and freight stakeholders share goals. Figure 2-13 lists these mutual goals, which can help foster better coordination and conflict resolution. Although both groups ultimately support both goals, Example: Stapleton Airport After flights ceased in 1995, Stapleton Airport transitioned to a mixed use neighborhood that has grown rapidly, with plans to be fully operational in 2016. Integrated into Denverâs existing street pattern, this community has residential, commercial, and light industrial uses designed at the human scale with sustainability as a core principle. However, some homes are outside the ideal quarter-mile range of shopping, transit, and schools, resulting in less walkability. There are also several chain retailers in the development. It is critical to reconcile between the freight needs at Big Box retailers and the pedestrian- oriented development goals of the overall community. However, Stapleton planners have been proactive in creating bicycle trails and transportation alternatives, such as bus and light rail service, to establish a strong transportation network. Once fully built out, Stapleton is expected to generate less traffic than the former airport. Even with Big Box retailers, the development will allow for safe and effective foot traffic (Leccese 2005).
planning for Smart Growth 21 some of these goals may have a natural tension with each other (e.g., increasing access and improving safety). Ultimately, integration gives freight and service vehicles the access and room to operate that they need to do their business. In turn, this ensures that the community receives needed services and goods. When integration is done well, the negative effects of freight can be minimized, if not eliminated entirely. 2.2.1 Municipal Departments or Agencies The relevant municipal agencies include municipal planning departments and/or planning boards, transportation and/or public works departments, and municipal economic development agencies. Table 2-3 lists activities that these agencies can lead or participate in to foster goods and services movement and smart growth. Figure 2-13. Common goals for smart growth advocates and freight stakeholders (Source: Cambridge Systematics).
22 Guide for Integrating Goods and Services Movement by Commercial Vehicles in Smart Growth environments 2.2.2 Regional and State Transportation and Planning Agencies The relevant regional and state agencies include state departments of transportation (DOTs), state planning agencies (where they exist), metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs), regional planning organizations (RPOs), councils of governments (COGs), state environmental agencies, state energy agencies, and state and regional economic development agencies. These regional and state agencies bring stakeholders together across a large jurisdiction to develop the economic development and transportation policies and infrastructure. These activities are, on the one hand, building a state or regional strategy from the bottom up by aggregating the activities, needs, and desires of the constituencies within the state or region. On the other hand, the state and regional strategies help to establish a context for smart growth development at the local level and explore the relationships that local land use decisions have with those of neighboring communities and regional priorities. Table 2-4 lists activities that these agencies can lead or participate in to foster goods and services movement and smart growth. 2.2.3 Federal Agencies Federal agencies such as the U.S. Department of Transportation (US DOT), U.S. Environ- mental Protection Agency (USEPA), U.S. Department of Energy (US DOE), Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) have regulatory and/or advisory roles in the state, regional, and municipal planning. Further, these Activity Role Role Description Municipal Land Use Planning Lead Conduct comprehensive plans that assess land use, transportation, economic development, environmental, and community issues and needs. The comprehensive plan may establish a smart growth vision for the community and identify transportation needs. Corridor or Subarea Plans Lead or support Lead and/or participate in regional or local corridor or subarea plans, which may advance smart growth principles and address goods movement issues. Zoning Lead Establish and enforce zoning to help determine use and/or form. Site Plan Review Lead Review development proposals for conformity with zoning requirements. Parking Management Lead Manage curbside and off-street parking facilities, especially in urban core or commercial districts. Establish and enforce commercial vehicle parking and loading areas. Designing and Managing Local Streets Lead Design, build, and maintain municipal streets. Implement Complete Streets treatments, traffic-calming treatments, and traffic control devices on these streets. Control speed limits to enhance safety. Community Issues Lead Field complaints from residents, community groups, and/or elected officials regarding environmental and community impacts associated with goods movement and deliveries. Process this feedback to shape changes to zoning, traffic operations, and other municipal functions. Urban Renewal Agencies Support Play a role in urban renewal agencies, which can be funding sources for redevelopment. Table 2-3. Municipal departments or agenciesâactivities and roles.
planning for Smart Growth 23 Activity Role Role Description State and Regional Freight Plans Lead Link regional freight access/mobility issues and local land use strategies. Use planning process as a forum for engaging municipalities and the private sector. Identify statewide and regional commercial motor vehicle needs. Corridor or Subarea Plans Lead, support, and/or fund Lead a corridor plan for a state highway (State DOTs and MPOs). Fund and/or participate in an advisory role in regional or local corridor or subarea plans, which may advance smart growth principles and address goods movement issues. Help determine design criteria and flexibility (State DOTs). TIP and STIP Project Selection Lead Develop selection criteria that may include smart growth, complete streets, freight considerations/accommodation, or other objectives. Funding Programs Lead Develop and manage sustainable development or âlivable communitiesâ planning and implementation grants. Programs can emphasize freight through selection criteria or implementation guidance. States also administer Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) and other similar Federal funding programs, which can help reconcile freight and residential uses. Transportation Demand Management Lead Implement and oversee transportation demand management programs to reduce the demand for roadway travel, particularly for single-occupancy vehicles, which helps support smart growth development (State agenciesâeither transportation or environmental). Municipal Planning and Zoning Support Provide technical assistance (through workshops or training, data, and model ordinances) to help municipalities implement strategies. Private Development Support Establish partnerships or agreements with private entities to encourage smart growth and address freight access issues. Private Freight Operations Support Establish partnerships or agreements (with private freight companies) to manage travel demand during peak periods and reduce environmental and Education/ Outreach Lead Provide forums for stakeholder information exchange and collaboration via standing committees, annual conferences or summits, guidelines and Energy Consumption Lead Plan for and fund alternative fuel and shore power systems. Information and Technology Lead Lead development of Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) to improve data collection and distribution to private-sector carriers so as to improve truck operations and limit the negative impacts of trucks (typically, State DOTs). For example, during an emergency road closure, variable message signs that provide truck routing can help keep trucks from using inappropriate roadways. Similarly, improved data collection by DOTs and MPOs can help communities better integrate future freight needs with desired growth education materials, etc. community impacts. patterns. Table 2-4. State and regional agenciesâactivities and roles.
24 Guide for Integrating Goods and Services Movement by Commercial Vehicles in Smart Growth environments agencies offer incentive programs that encourage private-sector carriers and shippers to adopt strategies that reduce emissions and other environmental and community impacts. Table 2-5 lists some of the roles that federal agencies perform that could facilitate integration of goods and services movement in smart growth environments. 2.2.4 Private Developers and Financiers Private developers are often the stakeholders who design and build buildings or whole communities that employ smart growth principles. Sometimes the developers take cues from local zoning requirements that encourage smart growth. Often, the developers recog- nize market demand for smart growth development and push the municipality to allow the implementation of elements that run contrary to zoning. Table 2-6 lists the roles of these stakeholders. 2.2.5 Shippers, Carriers, and Logistics Companies Private shippers, carriers, and logistics companies are involved in moving goods and services among locations where raw materials are extracted, locations where finished goods are manu- factured, and the distribution and retail facilities that connect the goods with consumers and users. Carriers include trucking companies, railroads, shipping lines, and airlines that move goods and services. Shippers send and receive shipments and include neighborhood shops and restaurants, national retail chains, and manufacturers. Shippers may be represented by national industry associations or local chambers of commerce. Logistics companies manage the flow Activity Role Role Description Emissions Standards Lead US EPA establishes emissions standards in order to reduce emissions from trucks and other sources over time. Energy Consumption Lead US DOEâs Clean Cities program aims to cut petroleum use in transportation. The effort supports reduced dependence on petroleum at all levels of government, using partnerships, publications, tools, and other resources Incentive Programs Lead Incentivize reductions of emissions and other environmental and community impacts through grants and loans to the private sector. State and Regional Freight Plans Support Provide guidelines for state and regional freight and transportation plans, data, and technical assistance. US DOT and FHWA also have a role in design criteria on the National Highway System (NHS). TIP and STIP Project Selection Support Provide guidelines, data, and technical assistance to state and regional Regulatory Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) controls motor carrier safety regulations and promulgates and enforces rules that improve truck safety and reduce the effect of trucks on the surrounding community. FMCSA will be involved with developing rules for alternative delivery vehicles (e.g., Uber or Lyft) and the introduction of autonomous or semi- to achieve this goal. agencies. autonomous vehicles. Lead Table 2-5. Federal agenciesâactivities and roles.
planning for Smart Growth 25 Activity Role Role Description Development Proposals and Design Lead Incorporate smart growth principles and anticipate commercial vehicle needs in development proposals and design. Site Plan Review Participant Submit site plans for review to municipal agencies (developers). In many cases, the requirements and standards are uniform throughout a municipality and allow a developer little flexibility. Developers with control over large planned-unit developments and/or long-standing, collaborative relationships with municipal agencies may be able to pilot more Municipal Zoning Support Design and develop buildings and/or whole communities that employ smart growth principles, as required by zoning. Often, however, developers push the municipalities to accept smart growth elements in a proposed design; such elements may run counter to standing innovative design elements, with conditions. (albeit often outdated) zoning codes. Table 2-6. Private developers and financiersâactivities and roles. of materials among shippers using combinations of carriers. In many instances, especially with national or multinational retailers, the functions of shippers, carriers, and/or logistics manage- ment are integrated. Table 2-7 lists the roles of these companies in integrating goods and services movement in smart growth environments. 2.2.6 Community Groups Community groups represent the interests of the residents of a neighborhood. These groups include neighborhood associations, community boards, and homeowners associations. These are the stakeholders who often alert government agencies to adverse effects of commercial or service vehicle movements in their communities. Table 2-8 lists the roles such community groups play. Activity Role Role Description Operational Efficiency & Safety Lead Analyze operations and implement strategies to improve safety and operational efficiency while reducing community and environmental Technology Solutions Lead Implement technology solutions to reduce emissions (using federal and state grants or loan assistance) and improve operational efficiency. State and Regional Freight Plans Support Participate in advisory committees, outreach, or draft reviews to offer perspective on industry needs and trends. Corridor or Subarea Plans Support Participate in advisory committees, outreach, or draft reviews to offer perspective on industry needs and trends. Zoning Support Provide input on loading zone and loading dock design and access issues. effects. Table 2-7. Shippers, carriers, and logistics companiesâactivities and roles.
26 Guide for Integrating Goods and Services Movement by Commercial Vehicles in Smart Growth environments 2.3 Best Practices and Conflicts The key conflicts identified in the research throughout the classifications tend to occur in one of four major phases: stage setting, creating places and streets, operation with minimal effects, and ongoing monitoring. The primary problems, issues, needs, and potential solutions pertaining to each phase are described below. 1. Stage Setting. This phase requires appropriate and coordinated land use planning at the local, regional, and, sometimes, state level. When local comprehensive plans and zoning ordinances result in clusters of incompatible land uses, the prosperity of the area can be harmed. To set the stage for smart growth, planners must identify land uses that are compatible and buffer land uses that are fundamentally incompatible. However, in older communities with established infrastructure and legacy zoning ordinances, revitalization can introduce new uses or inten- sities and associated conflicts without opportunities to include appropriate buffers. Examples of conflicts follow: â Encroachment on existing or planned industrial areas and transportation corridors. Mixed-use, walkable neighborhoods can result in residential and commercial properties near industrial uses. There are various implications of this particular blend of neighboring uses. Combined with increases in the price of renting or acquiring land, freight-generating users can be pushed to the periphery of these urban areas or be blocked from entering the market entirely. This phenomenon, known as freight sprawl, can result in negative con- sequences for communities, such as longer trips for trucks delivering to urban customers, increased congestion, and associated environmental and transportation costs. In addition, freight sprawl can make it more difficult for employees to get to work, particularly by public transit, and can also result in the relocation of high-paying jobs away from population centers (Mehaffy 2001, Strauss-Wieder 2003, Rouse 2014, Baker 2014, Coes No Date). â Zoning to plan for successful freight activity. Another source of conflict arises when plan- ners do not explicitly integrate industrial or freight activity in communities. In many cases, planners may not zone sufficient land for industrial and other freight-generating uses and so fail to provide transportation system access, utilities, and other needs for these businesses. Without adequate freight-specific resources, companies may seek to use other land to meet their needs, creating a potentially negative effect on neighboring land uses (Leccese 2005, Rhodes et al. 2012). In areas using form-based codes (FBC), planners should ensure that the code does not accidentally exclude freight uses. For example, restricting the width or Activity Role Role Description Municipal Plans Support Participate in public meetings, community group briefings, and other forums to provide planners with community concerns and priorities and to suggest Corridor or Subarea Plans Support Participate in public meetings, community group briefings, and other forums to provide planners with community concerns and priorities and to suggest Zoning Support Provide planners with community concerns and priorities and to suggest Freight Operations Support Raise concerns regarding noise, emissions, or other external impacts to companies and public agencies. solutions. solutions. solutions. Table 2-8. Community groupsâactivities and roles.
planning for Smart Growth 27 height of doors or other building openings could eliminate some industrial uses that require space to move larger goods into and out of buildings. 2. Creating Places and Streets. This phase of smart growth planning is a continuation of designating appropriate land uses. It is typically led by local planners, state DOTs (when a state highway is involved), and private developers creating buildings and private streets. This phase primarily concentrates on the methods for designing streets and public places that help support key smart growth principles. Issues arising during urban design, site planning, and streetscaping can be mitigated through zoning and subdivision or development regulations and during the site plan review. This phase is particularly important because design elements can affect how users interact within a smart growth community, and municipalities can have a strong hand in ensuring the right design elements and zoning ordinances shape the com- munity to safely accommodate freight. Examples of conflicts follow: â Truck noise. Noise from truck movement, idling, loading, and unloading can be diffi- cult for residents to tolerate, especially during the off hours. Exposure to noise has been shown to cause hypertension, sleep disturbances, and increased aggression. Excessive noise has also been linked to an increase in the use of antacids, hypnotics, and sedatives. Trucks can be disproportionately noisy; one diesel bus or heavy truck can produce the noise equivalent of over 32 automobiles (Edmonton Trolley Coalition 2015). When loading docks and garbage disposal sites in a mixed-use development are immediately next to residential units, residents suffer from truck noise at all hours of the night, affecting their health and well-being within the community. In light of these issues, regulatory and marketplace pressures may cause carriers to use electric bicycles for short-distance deliveries. â Lack of buffering near housing. Without proper buffering between residential and industrial uses, freight activity is more likely to spill into surrounding areas. Residents may notice frequent and/or fast-moving truck movement and feel more unsafe walk- ing, bicycling, and navigating their neighborhood. If new housing or mixed-use units are developed near existing freight uses or rights-of-way without sufficient buffering from existing uses, residents may complain about excessive truck activity or threats to pedestrian safety. â Street and intersection design and commercial vehicle access. Providing access for large trucks and other commercial vehicles in communities is a contentious issue. Although it is not appropriate to design every street to accommodate a tractor with a 53-ft-long trailer, smaller box trucks and emergency vehicles need to be able to access areas where retail, restaurant, industrial, and institutional freight customers are located. Realistically, smart growth communities depend on freight deliveries to maintain a high quality of life. Most importantly, pedestrian safety and commercial vehicle access are not mutually exclusive goals. Traffic-calming treatments (e.g., cushioned humps, speed tables, and rumble strips) can reduce vehicle travel speeds and enhance driversâ awareness of pedes trians and cyclists, without âdesigning outâ delivery vans or emergency service vehicles from streets and roads where they are needed (Project for Public Spaces 2016). Some intersections can be designed with traversable aprons, which provide additional width around the perimeter of the central island for larger vehicles. They are often used on roundabouts and occasionally on the corners of traditional four-way intersections to allow trucks, buses, and emergency vehicles to complete tight turns. â On-street loading. The supply of available curbside space for truck parking and loading/ unloading is often not sufficient, although providing it for drivers can help make deliveries more efficient and keep trucks from blocking travel lanes. This lack of supply may be due to insufficient spaces, illegal use of space by non-commercial vehicles, or extended use by commercial vehicles serving a location but not loading or unloading. In addition, the
28 Guide for Integrating Goods and Services Movement by Commercial Vehicles in Smart Growth environments height of the curb can cause issues for commercial vehicles making a curbside delivery. Low curbs are generally preferred for Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) access, as well as drivers using delivery carts, while high curbs can make access more difficult for all users. Commercial vehicle operators often accept that they will be ticketed for illegal parking, and it is often factored in as part of the cost of doing business, which is typically passed on to consumers (Hardy 2014). However, illegal parking can create hazardous conditions for users, particularly bicyclists and pedestrians, making them more likely to be injured. Strategies to reduce illegal parking include marked loading zones, protected bicycle lanes, and sidewalk barriers to allow trucks to unload while protecting pedestrians (see Figures 2-14 and 2-15). Technology advances may result in more innovative solutions (e.g., allowing trucks to reserve and pay for a curbside loading spot). Truck parking reservations are avail- able for some truck rest stops, but no U.S. municipality uses such a system to control curb parking. Addressing this issue and implementing a solution can help reduce negative effects on both carriers and residents. 3. Operation with Minimal Impacts. In addition to planning and designing spaces and streets, it is necessary to ensure that the operation of commercial vehicles in a smart growth environment occurs with minimal negative effects on the environment and quality of life in a community. Operational issues include commercial vehiclesâ contributions to peak-period congestion, parking and loading in inappropriate locations, and perform- ing delivery or pickup during peak periods (which contributes to traffic congestion) or during late night hours (when many adjacent or nearby residents wish to sleep). Daily operations may be enhanced with additional policies, practices, and investment from both the public and private sectors. How the overall transportation system operates can either create conflict or be used to reduce conflict among goods movement and other priorities. Examples follow: â Time of day. Traffic flow fluctuates depending on the time of day. Deliveries during peak morning and evening rush-hour periods exacerbate traffic congestion. Truck operators must cope with unreliable pickup and delivery times. This ultimately results in higher costs of delivery to make up for the time lost as a result of congestion. When trucks make curbside deliveries, they move goods across sidewalks when many pedestrians are walk- ing aroundâthis inhibits flow and can reduce pedestrian safety. Deliveries made during nighttime hours may be less disruptive to the performance of the transportation system, but may require businesses to stay open to receive deliveries and can introduce noise Figure 2-14. Alley in San Francisco, CA (Source: National Association of City Transportation Officials).
planning for Smart Growth 29 and vibration nuisances during the hours many residents wish to sleep. New York City pioneered an off-hour pilot delivery program in 2009, which was well-received by both businesses and carriers, enabling more productive staff, faster deliveries, and significant cost savings. Additionally, there were no increases in noise complaints from neighbor- ing residents. However, in other communities, the freight industry may need to be more sensitive to noise impacts. â Capacity. Capacity can be measured both in terms of roadways and the freight rail system. Reaching capacity on the roadway system is often a result of congestion, which arises for several reasons, including the aforementioned time-of-day concerns. Competition for capacity on the rail system leads to conflicts between passenger and freight rail interests. In smart growth environments with passenger and freight rail service, increased passenger rail service can result in pressures to reduce freight operating windows. Although freight railroads own most rail lines in the United States, in shared-use corridors, passenger railroads and freight lines may have different priorities. There also may be different factors and performance targets for their service operations and different opinions over cost-sharing schemes to finance capacity expansion. Delays to passenger trains create delays and ripple Figure 2-15. Protected bicycle lane in Vancouver vs- non-protected lane in New York City (Source: Paul Krueger via Flickr [top], Gregory H. via Flickr [bottom]).
30 Guide for Integrating Goods and Services Movement by Commercial Vehicles in Smart Growth environments effects in other transit systems, while delays to freight trains can result in lost productivity and noise/air pollution from idling trains. â Emissions and air quality. Diesel engine emissions have been shown to harm the natural environment and human health. Diesel fuel contains more than 40 toxic air contaminants, many of which are suspected cancer-causing substances. Although the prevalence of diesel- powered vehicles makes it nearly impossible to avoid exposure, people living in urban and industrial areas are more likely to be exposed to pollutants regularly (American Lung Association of California 2015). Natural gas is also a fossil fuel, but it creates less particulate matter (PM) and NOx emissions than does diesel fuel. Even if freight operations are efficient, using outdated technology or fossil fuels in freight vehicles may harm residents in neighbor- ing areas. However, emissions impacts can be minimized by awarding incentives to owners of freight-depending properties for using cleaner trucks and providing accommodations for engine shut-down during pickups and deliveries. â Lack of consensus about Complete Streets and freight movement. Although some recent Complete Streets design guidelines [e.g., the National Association of City Transportation Officialsâ (NACTO) Urban Street Design Guide and the Institute of Transportation Engi- neersâ (ITE) Designing Walkable Urban Thoroughfares] include consideration of freight in some contexts, in many of the ancillary or policy documents, freight needs are limited or absent (NACTO 2014, ITE 2014). Complete Streets advocates and freight or trucking inter- ests disagree about various points. In particular, disagreement exists over designing turning radii and other elements of the street network to accommodate trucks hauling 53-ft-long trailers. Such trailers are the national standard for over-the-road trucking and are often used to deliver shipments to retail establishments and restaurants, especially to retail chain establishments. Some trucking companies argue that a shift to smaller urban delivery vehicles will require the use of more than one truck to make a delivery to a customer, resulting in increased freight transportation cost to customers. One 53-ft-long trailer can carry up to 30 standard 40-in-by-48-in pallets, while a 24-ft-long box truck can only carry up to 12 pal- lets, and a 12-ft-long van can only carry up to four pallets. Replacing one fully-loaded large truck trip with multiple small truck or delivery van trips, therefore, could allow freight to fit more easily into narrower street and intersection design and on-street loading capacity, but could also increase truck vehicle-miles traveled (VMT) and associated contributions to traffic congestion and emissions (Roth, Gillette, and Hart 2014; Rouse 2014; MacCleary 2014; Baker 2014; Holguin-Veras 2012). This tradeoff is implied, but rarely discussed in detail in the literature presented by either smart growth advocates or freight/goods movement plans. For example, the Urban Street Design Guide offers that DL-23 delivery trucks can be a viable design vehicle for urban streets, but does not discuss the positive or negative effects of these vehicles (NACTO 2014). 4. Ongoing Monitoring. After foundational and operational elements are in place, active monitoring helps to ensure that freight practices improve, adapt, and align with national or global standards and evolving community needs. Even if the prior phases are completed and conflicts are addressed, issues can arise or reappear if there is no adequate monitoring. Public-sector transportation agencies can monitor the performance of the roadway network and assess the benefits or identify unintended consequences of design or operational fea- tures. Local agencies may field comments or complaints from local businesses or residents regarding commercial or service vehicle movement, parking, delivery, or other issues. Both the private and public sectors can have a role ensuring a consistent and positive outcome from accommodating freight in smart growth environments. Although freight activity tends to be driven by profit maximization within individual organizations, monitoring strategies can be used to mitigate or eliminate negative consequences. â Evaluating performance. Many public agencies and private stakeholders gather and analyze data and qualitative information on the performance of their respective infrastructure and
planning for Smart Growth 31 operational systems. When places and streets are designed and operated to safely integrate goods and services movement with Complete Streets and other smart growth goals, it is important to understand whether the measures taken are effective. Table 2-9 lists questions to guide such an evaluation and general categories of data or information. â Divergent planning goals. Planning goals can diverge over timeâdisparities between planners and government agencies can develop, innovation or updates to best practices may be lacking, changes can occur in local or regional priorities, and staff turnover may result in a loss of planning strategies and expertise. Smart growth policies that affect land use decisions generally occur at the local level, while freight transportation is often re- gional, national, or international in scope. Smart growth policies, when strategically ap- plied, should help shape how freight operates. Local land use and development policies that do not accommodate the needs of freight can have negative repercussions that extend far beyond the area where the land use decision was made. As conditions change and initial stakeholders move on, the original conditions that encouraged collaboration among freight and smart growth advocates can fade. For the public sector, turnover in staff or changing priorities or political views at the municipal or state level can erode the sense of accomplishment. In the private sector, financial considerations, competition, and staff changes can also create difficulties. Sustaining communication and re-evaluating goals based on changing needs is an ongoing challenge demonstrated in every case study in Chapter 4. 2.4 Goal-Setting and Mutual Benefits Given the aforementioned freight conflicts, cooperation among public- and private-sector stakeholders is crucial so as to avoid, reduce, or mitigate such conflicts. Building cooperative relationships takes time, effort, and resources and does not always produce consistent progress. Progress can be facilitated by open and honest communication, which helps create trust among stakeholder groups. The four strategies presented below outline how stakeholders can come together, identify common goals, and work together to achieve their goals. This process is most difficult when groups of stakeholders are trying to work together for the first time. By using the four strategies in tandem, stakeholders can build relationships founded in trust, which can be transferred forward and facilitate cooperation in subsequent phases or future projects. Through this process, public- and private-sector stakeholders can work together to develop smart growth Is the community safer? Ã® Crash type and severity data Ã® Perceptions from police/EMS and residents Are deliveries being made safely and efficiently? Ã® Traffic operations data (speed, delay, etc.) Ã® Motor carrier and shipper data or qualitative assessment Ã® Relative change in transportation cost relative to comparable markets Are business establishments thriving? Ã® Lease rates and occupancy data Ã® Employment and sales data Are the environmental impacts reduced and quality of life enhanced? Ã® Air quality monitoring Ã® Noise monitoring Ã® Relative change in real estate sales or lease rates Ã® Perceptions from stakeholders Key Evaluation Questions Categories of Data or References Table 2-9. Evaluating performance of integrated goods and services movement in smart growth environments.
32 Guide for Integrating Goods and Services Movement by Commercial Vehicles in Smart Growth environments goals that yield economic, environmental, and social benefits while supporting safe and efficient freight transportation. The strategies identified later in this Guide depend on these types of cooperative relationships, and the case studies in Chapter 4 provide real-world examples. â¢ Share knowledge. Paramount among the strategies to foster cooperative relationships is open and honest communication and sharing of knowledge among stakeholder groups. Stakeholders who are unaccustomed to working together may be suspicious of the motives of others. Facili- tating communication and knowledge sharing through events such as open houses, inviting representatives to speak at association meetings, and educational materials (e.g., brochures or online educational videos) can help agency staff, the private sector, and the public at large better understand how (1) commercial vehicle movements support the economy and quality of life and (2) those movements can impose negative effects on residents adjacent to freight facilities. A public agency (e.g., a municipal, regional, or state transportation or planning agency) can facilitate this sharing of information through standing committees, project com- mittees, and special events (e.g., an âindustry dayâ or a âsustainable neighborhoods dayâ) that are focused on communication and knowledge sharing across stakeholder groups. â¢ Establish common objectives. Although each set of stakeholders has its own set of goals for smart growth and freight management, there may be overlap among stakeholder groups. Recognizing where goals may be similar can help achieve faster outcomes with mutually beneficial results. For goals that do not completely overlap, there may also be commonalities among goals that can be more efficient to address simultaneously. Common interests, such as managing curbside parking and loading areas, or being âgood neighborsâ may lead to the identification of strategies that support the goals of more than one stakeholder group. â¢ Prepare to compromise. Stakeholders will benefit more in the long run from making compromises among their own goals or interests with those of other stakeholder groups. For example, public agencies can help strike a balance between stakeholders by establishing commercial vehicle loading zones available to commercial vehicles during morning hours, when demand for deliveries is greatest, and return that space to resident or visitor parking in the afternoon and evening hours when demand for those uses is greatest. Such a compromise results in the provision of parking supply for both groups, but that parking is not available to either group at all times. â¢ Demonstrate results. Being able to show that their involvement has contributed to a positive result is perhaps the most critical aspect of establishing and maintaining trust among a wide range of stakeholders. Implementing a solution may take longer than some stakeholders might hope. Compromise is often necessary, and adjustments to policies and procedures may be needed over time. However, by participating in this process, each stakeholder involved should recognize that, by working together, all parties can identify issues and common ground and implement workable solutions. This mindset establishes a trust in the process as well as the other stakeholder groups.