Monday, February 4, 2008

Troy/Birmingham taking transit seriously

Urban planners dream of transit-oriented development (TOD) -- development that depends on and encourages the use of mass transit. It is the opposite of sprawl.

Troy and Birmingham are the first cities in the region to consider the concept. Plans are being made to create a new transit center to connect the cities' downtowns and make both more walkable. Urban Land, the journal of the Urban Land Institute, recently published a story on their efforts: Next TOD Stop? A proposed transit center in suburban Detroit, Michigan, could bring transit-oriented development to the Motor City (PDF file).

Coupled with the Community Foundation's Greenways Initiative to re-introduce green space where concrete now prevails, one can envision a new future for Southeast Michigan with far more greenery and a network of local downtowns connected by rapid transit to the thriving urban core of Downtown Detroit. But that, of course, is wishful thinking ...

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