Monday, January 20, 2014

Are Pedestrian Retail Areas Coming to 35th Ave NE?

The City's Department of Planning and Development (DPD) has begun a Pedestrian Retail Areas evaluation to identify suitable retail areas which warrant greater pedestrian-friendly design requirements.  As part of the evaluation, they've mapped existing and potential pedestrian retail areas to define the study area and developed preliminary recommendations for parts of the 35th Ave NE Business District, which include: Wedgwood North and Wedgwood South.  The preliminary recommendations for both of these areas is to designate them as a "pedestrian area."

Along with the mapping and designation of pedestrian retail areas, the City is looking at additional design requirements for these areas to encourage and enhance pedestrian uses, including:
  • Require wider sidewalks, 
  • Require overhead weather protection, 
  • Limit driveways from crossing sidewalks, 
  • Restrict parking facilities from the front or sides of parcels,
  • Require a minimum floor area ration (FAR) for new development.
It's important to note that this process is a City-driven planning process that's separate to the streetscape design process that the 35th Ave Committee is just beginning.  However, there appears to be a lot of shared goals between both of these planning processes.  It's also important to note that the City is just beginning its public outreach and engagement for this planning process and is soliciting input.  TAKE THE CITY'S PEDESTRIAN RETAIL AREA SURVEY HERE (it's really quick!).

The City's plan is to finalize their recommendations after receiving feedback on their preliminary recommendations between April - July 2014.

For more information, check out the City's Pedestrian Retail Areas website.

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