Strong Commercial Centers

Creating Vibrant Downtowns, Business Districts, Urban Villages and Other Accessible, Mixed-Use Activity Centers


TDM Encyclopedia

Victoria Transport Policy Institute


Updated 21 December 2015

This chapter describes how to help create vibrant downtowns and business districts, and how this helps support TDM objectives.



Commercial Centers (also called Downtowns, Central Business Districts, and Urban Villages) contain a concentration of business, civic and cultural activities, creating conditions that facilitate interaction and exchange. This increases overall Accessibility. Vibrant commercial centers have the following attributes:


·         Density and Clustering. Commercial centers should be medium- to high-density, with multi-story buildings. Densities of 50 employees or more per gross acre are desirable. As much as possible the ground floor of buildings should have activities and services that involve frequent public interaction (such as retail, professional services, civic offices, etc.), with office or residential activities above, which creates an attractive street environment while accommodating dense employment. 


·         Diversity. Centers contain a diverse mix of office and retail space, banks and law offices, public institutions (such as city hall, courthouses, and other government offices), entertainment and arts activities, and other suitable industries. Increasingly, commercial centers also have residential buildings, either within or nearby.


·         Local and Regional Importance. Commercial Centers should contain a significant portion of total regional employment and business activity.


·         Walkability. Most Commercial Centers are less than 250 acres in size so all destinations are within about 10-minute walk, with good sidewalks and pathways, pedestrian shortcuts, attractive Streetscapes, pedestrian scale and orientation, relatively narrow streets (4 lanes or less is desirable), relatively slow vehicle traffic (30 miles-per-hour or less is desirable), Universal Design, and a high degree of pedestrian Security. Some have Pedways, which are indoor walking networks that connect buildings and transportation terminals.


·         Transportation Diversity. The area should be accessible by walking, cycling, taxi, automobile, and public transit.


·         Parking Management. In order to avoid the need to devote a large portion of land to parking, Commercial Centers require that parking be managed for efficiency (Manfille and Shoup 2004). It is often appropriate to use structured or underground parking, and to limit the total amount of parking in a commercial center.


·         Transit Oriented Development. This refers to districts designed with features that facilitate transit accessibility, with maximum developing within convenient walking distance of Attractive Transit Stations.



There are many types of Commercial Centers, ranging from Downtowns (also called Central Business Districts or CBDs), which are the primary Commercial Center serving a region, to Secondary Business Districts and Village Centers. A large Central Business District can contain thousands of businesses with tens of thousands of employees, while a local village center may be considered successful if it has a dozen businesses with two or three hundred employees. Some have a particular base or specialty, such as a cluster of medical facilities, a wholesale district, a tourist district, or an adjacent university campus, but such centers include a diverse range of businesses providing support services.


Business activities tend to be more efficient in a Commercial Center that contains related industries, because clustering allows convenient interaction between staff, and convenient access to the services they use. A typical business district contains offices for finance, insurance, real estate, law and research companies, government agencies, plus various support services such as stationary retailers, janitorial services and computer supplies. This allows more specialization, for example, lawyers that specialize in a particular subject, translators who support trade and cultural activities with a particular region, and suppliers of specialty equipment for a particular industry. Commercial Centers also contain conference centers, hotels and other types of meeting facilities. As a result, people working in such areas can meet with several colleagues each day (a banker, a lawyer, a translator) with minimal time spent traveling. This high degree of accessibility that occurs when related industries are clustered together tends to increase economic productivity, called Economies of Agglomeration


Strong Commercial Centers are an important component of Smart Growth and New Urbanism. Many central business districts and nearby neighborhoods are experiencing new residential development in the form of high- and medium-density condominiums and apartments, townhouses, and small-lot single-family homes. Urban living is particularly popular among young adults and retirees. Market surveys indicate that about a third of home buyers would prefer to live in mixed-use new urbanist community if available (Hirschhorn, 2001). Some central business districts are still losing business and population, but there are numerous indications that, with proper support, downtowns can be successful and provide numerous economic, social and environmental benefits.


Transportation planning decisions have significant impacts on the success of Commercial Centers. Walking, Public Transit and Parking Management are particularly important, and Commute Trip Reduction programs tend to be particularly effective. Public Bike Systems increase the convenience of cycling in downtown areas.


People who work, shop and live in a Commercial Center can satisfy many of their daily needs without using an automobile. For example, employees who work in the area will find a diverse range of cafes and restaurants for refreshments and meals, shops that sell daily items (such as groceries, books and stationary goods) and more specialized items (such as gifts, clothing and hardware). Similarly, a vibrant Commercial Center contains medical and dental services, gyms for exercise, daycare facilities, and other types of services. It is therefore beneficial to locate affordable housing near Commercial Districts, so non-drivers have convenient access to such services, called Location Efficient Development.


Commercial Centers are an alternative to more Automobile Dependent commercial land use patterns, such as suburban strips (activities are scattered along major arterials, which requires a car trip between each destination), and private malls or campuses (which have a high degree of internal walkability, but are generally surrounded by large parking facilities, are widely dispersed, and contain a limited range of activities, and so tend to require numerous automobile trips).


Downtown Development Evaluation (Jacobs 2008):

  1. Cities are for living in.
  2. Understand who cities are for
  3. Mixed-use environments
  4. Think compactly
  5. Invest in culture
  6. Conservation
  7. Mobility
  8. Creative use of history



How It Is Implemented

There are many ways that public policies can encourage businesses to locate in commercial centers, and support their economic development (Smart Growth Policy Reforms).


·         Governments can locate their own offices and services in suitable Commercial Centers.


·         Zoning codes can encourage or require businesses (particularly large employers) to locate in suitable commercial centers and discourage strip commercial development.


·         Tax policies and utility fees can favor the location of businesses in commercial centers.


·         Infrastructure investments (roads, walking facilities, utilities, transit services) can favor commercial centers, particularly for industries that have numerous employees.


·         Improve marketing efforts in Commercial Centers, for example, by sponsoring special events and coordinated advertising among businesses.


·         Transportation policies and planning can favor multi-modalism, including walking, cycling and transit services. Walking and Cycling improvements are important in Commercial Centers.


·         Parking Management tends to be particularly important in Commercial Centers.


·         Transit Oriented Development often provides a catalyst for the development of Commercial Centers.


·         Encourage infill development.


·         Suburban malls can be converted into more mixed-use Commercial Centers by adding employment and residential land uses, improving pedestrian connections with nearby destinations, and expanding the range of services and activities available.


·         Locate major organizations, such as universities and industrial centers, either within or near existing commercial centers.



Travel Impacts

Residents living in or near Commercial Centers tend to own fewer cars than residents of more dispersed, isolated areas (Land Use Impacts on Transportation). People who work in major centers tend to commute by transit significantly more than those who work in more dispersed locations, and they tend to drive less for errands (Ewing, Pendall and Chen 2002). While about 90% of suburban employees drive to work, but this declines to about 50% among downtown employees (even less in cities with major transit systems). Franks and Pivo (1995) found that automobile commuting declines significantly when workplace densities reach 50‑75 employees per gross acre, since this tends to support transit and ridesharing commutes, and improved access to local services, such as nearby coffee shops and stores.


Comprehensive modeling by Kuzmyak, et al. (2012) indicates that employment density, job/population balance, street network grain and connectivity, transit service quality, and regional accessibility all have a significant effect on vehicle trip and vehicle travel. Analysis by Holian and Kahn (2012) found that all else being equal, residents of urban regions with more vibrant downtowns (indicated by its share of residents who are college graduates, center city crime rate, number of cultural and consumer-oriented establishments downtown, and the share of the metropolitan area’s jobs and population growth downtown), drive less, rely more on walking and public transport, consume less fuel and produce less vehicle emissions than in urban regions with less vibrant downtowns. Census data indicate that metropolitan areas with more vibrant downtowns experienced less sprawl between 2000 and 2010. This suggests that vibrancy influences land-use patterns, and land-use patterns in turn influence driving and public transit use.


Because activities and people are concentrated, road and parking Congestion tend to be relatively intense in major Commercial Centers, but because people use alternative modes and travel shorter distances, particularly for businesses meetings, per capita traffic congestion costs tends to be lower. Commute trips may be somewhat longer if employment is concentrated in a central business district. For this reason, many urban planners believe that the most efficient urban land use pattern is to have a Central Business District that contains the highest level business activities (“main offices”), and smaller Commercial Centers with retail and “back offices” scattered around the city among residential areas.


Table 1            Travel Impact Summary




Reduces total traffic.


Reduces automobile trips.

Reduces peak period traffic.



Shifts peak to off-peak periods.



Shifts automobile travel to alternative modes.



Improves access, reduces the need for travel.



Increased ridesharing.



Increased public transit.



Increased cycling.



Increased walking.



Increased Telework.



Reduced freight traffic.



Rating from 3 (very beneficial) to –3 (very harmful). A 0 indicates no impact or mixed impacts.



Benefits and Costs

Strong Commercial Centers provide a high level of Accessibility and Transportation Diversity, which increases use of alternative modes (particularly public transit), reduces per capita vehicle trips and allows Parking Management. Research by Ewing, Pendall and Chen (2002) indicates that cities with Strong Commercial Centers tend to have lower per capita traffic fatalities. Strong Commercial Centers tend to increase productivity and supports Economic Development. By concentrating activities and increasing Density, Strong Commercial Centers tend to reduce per capita land consumption, and therefore reduce sprawl and associated Land Use Impacts.


Costs include more concentrated traffic congestion and pollution emissions, although this is usually offset by reductions in per capita vehicle use. Infill redevelopment may increase some development costs, but total development and public service costs are generally lower than dispersed, sprawl development (Litman, 2004). Other advantages and disadvantages associated with higher density development are discussed in the Land Use Evaluation chapter.


Table 2          Benefit Summary




Congestion Reduction


Reduces automobile trips, but concentrates traffic.

Road & Parking Savings


Reduces automobile trips, allows more efficient parking management

Consumer Savings


Reduces automobile costs.

Transport Choice


Improves transportation options.

Road Safety


Research indicates lower per capita traffic fatalities.

Environmental Protection


Reduces automobile trips and land use, but may concentrate pollution.

Efficient Land Use


Represents more efficient land use compared with dispersed development.

Community Livability


Creates more accessible, mixed land use, and can revitalize urban neighborhoods.

Rating from 3 (very beneficial) to –3 (very harmful). A 0 indicates no impact or mixed impacts.



Equity Impacts

Strong Commercial Centers can benefit transportation disadvantaged people by increasing their travel options. It is particularly beneficial if such areas include affordable housing nearby (Location Efficient Development).


Table 3          Equity Summary




Treats everybody equally.



Individuals bear the costs they impose.



Progressive with respect to income.


Benefits lower-income people if it improves affordable travel options (walking, cycling and public transit).

Benefits transportation disadvantaged.


Improves mobility for non-drivers, particularly if such areas have affordable housing nearby.

Improves basic mobility.


Improves mobility for non-drivers to major destinations.

Rating from 3 (very beneficial) to –3 (very harmful). A 0 indicates no impact or mixed impacts.




Strong Commercial Centers can be developed in many conditions. They are most common in cities and town, but even in rural area, clustering activities into a village can increase accessibility and reduce the amount of driving by residents to run errands, compared with activities being widely dispersed. It is particularly useful if affordable housing is located within or adjacent to the Commercial Center, so people who cannot drive can easily walk to common destinations.


Table 4          Application Summary





Large urban region.


Federal government.


High-density, urban.


State/provincial government.


Medium-density, urban/suburban.


Regional government.




Municipal/local government.


Low-density, rural.


Business Associations/TMA.


Commercial center.


Individual business.


Residential neighborhood.




Resort/recreation area.


Neighborhood association.


College/university communities.




Ratings range from 0 (not appropriate) to 3 (very appropriate).




Land Use Management



Relationships With Other TDM Strategies

Strong Commercial Centers support and are supported by  Smart Growth, New Urbanism, Location Efficient Development and Transit Oriented Development land use policies. They tend to support Walking and Cycling, Public Transit, and Universal Design. They support  Commute Trip Management, Parking Management, Shared Parking and Parking Pricing.




Major stakeholders include local government officials (who set land use policies), businesses (which decide where to locate and what type of building to use), residents (who may either support or oppose infill development), employers (who choose work locations and policies, such as Parking Cash Out) employees (who may support or oppose working in a Commercial Center, and customers (who decide where to shop).



Barriers To Implementation

Major barriers include various practical and legal constraints on clustered and infill development, and a preference among some employees and customers for more dispersed, suburban locations for commercial activities.



Best Practices

·         Locate public facilities within Commercial Centers.

·         Encourage infill development and increased density in Commercial Centers.

·         Use Transit Oriented Development as a catalyst for Commercial Centers.

·         Use location-based development and utility fees to encourage infill over dispersed development (Smart Growth Policy Reforms).

·         Use Commute Trip Reduction programs and Parking Management to address transportation problems in Commercial Centers.

·         Allow Context Sensitive Design so development can better fit into existing commercial areas.

·         Discourage urban-fringe commercial development.



Examples and Case Studies


The Chattanooga Story (

Over the last 20 year, Chattanooga, Tennessee has redeveloped its once-depressed downtown to become a major commercial and tourist center that attracts millions of visitors a year. This evaluated out of three decades of community planning that emphasize citizen involvement, local environmental quality and strategic investments.


Concerned about the impacts that pollution was causing on local economy, the Chattanooga Chamber of Commerce created a Air Pollution Control Board in 1967. The board included a diversity group of business leaders and citizens. It established a 1972 deadline for all existing major sources of pollution to be in compliance with emission standards, which was met at a cost of $40 million. National and international attention was focused on a city that in three years had changed from the most polluted city in the United States to one of the cleanest. This inspired a new community challenge, revitalizing a dying city.


In the early 80’s, city officials established a goal that Chattanooga should become a leader in developing solutions to urban problems. In 1982, City and County governments appointed a task force to study and define the best way to develop the 22-mile Tennessee River corridor around Chattanooga. Through this process thousands of citizens attended hundreds of meetings to focus on the riverfront. The Task Force drafted the Tennessee Riverfront Master Plan covered 20 years and involved $750 million in commercial, residential and recreational development.


This led to creation of the RiverCity Corporation, a private, nonprofit organization with a mandate to implement the Riverfront Master Plan and 40 community development goals. Among other achievements, it developed the Tennessee Aquarium, the world’s largest freshwater aquarium, which opened in 1992. The structure has become a trademark for the city that in 10 years transformed itself from a dying city to one of growth and sustainable development. As a result of these efforts, Chattanooga is now one of America's most livable cities.



New Urbanism Street Design in Downtown Milwaukee (Voigt and Polenske 2006)

A number of innovative parking management, traffic management, pedestrian improvements and visitor information improvements are being applied in downtown Milwaukee to make it more attractive and accessible. These include:

·         Changing from parallel to angled parking on several streets to increase total available supply.

·         Encouraging employees and visitors to use structured parking and walk to destinations around the downtown (called “park once” trips) rather than driving from one destination to another.

·         Improving pedestrian conditions, including wider sidewalks, more pedestrian-friendly intersection design, and a riverwalk path.

·         Buildings designed for pedestrian access, with ground-floor storefronts.

·         Improving wayfinding signs.

·         Providing downtown circulator transit services.

·         Replacing an elevated freeway with a surface arterial to eliminate a barrier to travel between the downtown and nearby neighborhoods.



Main Street Programs (

Downtown Revitalization (also called Main Street Programs) is intended to make downtowns and neighborhood commercial centers more successful and attractive, helping to create more mixed-use, infill development reflecting New Urbanist principles. Such efforts involve downtown economic development programs, increased downtown housing, promoting community activities (such as recreational, cultural and civic events that attract regional residents to the downtown), Parking Management, Traffic Calming and building rehabilitation.



Downtown Living (Birch 2005)

Many cities are experiencing population growth. An analysis of downtown population, household, and income trends in 44 selected cities from 1970 to 2000 finds that:


During the 1990s, downtown population grew by 10 percent, a resurgence following 20 years of overall decline. Forty percent of the sample cities began to see growth before the 1990s. While only New York's two downtown areas and Seattle, Los Angeles, and San Diego saw steady increases from 1970 to 2000, another 13 downtowns have experienced sustained growth since the 1980s.


From 1970 to 2000, the number of downtown households increased 8 percent—13 percent in the 1990s alone—and their composition shifted. Households grew faster than population in downtowns, reflecting the proliferation of smaller households of singles, unrelated individuals living together, and childless married couples.


Downtown homeownership rates more than doubled during the thirty-year period, reaching 22 percent by 2000. Overall the number of homeowners grew steadily each decade. By 2000, the share of homeowners across the sample downtowns swung from a high of 41 percent in Chicago to a low of just 1 percent in Cincinnati.


Downtowns are more racially and ethnically diverse than 20 years ago. From 1980 to 2000, the combined share of white and black residents living in the sample downtowns fell from 81 percent to 73 percent, while the share of Hispanic and Asian residents increased. The number of white residents living downtown rebounded in the 1990s, however, despite an overall loss of this group in cities as a whole.


In general, downtowns boast a higher percentage of both young adults and college-educated residents than the nation's cities and suburbs. In 2000, 25- to 34-year olds represented nearly a quarter of the downtown population—up from 13 percent in 1970. Forty-four percent of downtowners had a bachelors degree or higher.


Downtowns are home to some of the most and least affluent households of their cities and regions. Twenty of the sample downtowns—such as Midtown Manhattan, Dallas, and Miami—have at least one tract where the median income is higher than that of their MSA as a whole. Thirty-eight have at least one tract 50 percent or lower than their MSA median.



Prioritizing Public Funding

In 1997 the State of Maryland passed “Priority Funding Areas” legislation that limits most State infrastructure funding and economic development, housing and other program monies to Smart Growth Areas which local governments designate for growth ( This package facilitates the reuse of brownfields and provide tax credits to businesses creating jobs in a Priority Funding Area.



Downtown Pasadena Redevelopment

(from Douglas Kolozsvari and Donald Shoup, “Turning Small Change Into Big Changes,” ACCESS 23, University of Calif. Transport Center,, Fall 2003, pp. 2-7)


Old Pasadena’s downtown had become run down, with many derelict and abandoned buildings and few customers, in part due to the limited amount of parking available to customers. Curb parking was restricted to two-hour duration, but many employees simply parked in the most convenient, on-street spaces and moved their vehicles several times each day. The city proposed pricing on-street parking as a way to increase turnover and make parking available to customers. Many local merchants originally opposed the idea. As a compromise, city officials agreed to dedicate all revenues to public improvements that make the downtown more attractive. A Parking Meter Zone (PMZ) was established within which parking was priced and revenues were invested.


With this proviso, the merchants agreed to the proposal. They began to see parking meters in a new way: as a way to fund the projects and services that directly benefit their customers and businesses. Because parking had previously been unpriced, the city didn’t lose anything from the general fund by dedicating the revenue to the local area. In fact, the city gained additional revenue from overtime fines. The city formed a PMZ advisory board consisting of business and property owners, which recommended parking policies and set spending priorities for the meter revenues. This approach of connecting parking revenues directly to added public services and keeping it under local control help guarantee the program’s success. Investments included new street furniture and trees, more police patrols, better street lighting, more street and sidewalk cleaning, pedestrian facility improvements and marketing (including production of area maps showing local attractions and parking facilities. To highlight these benefits to motorists, each parking meter has a small sticker which reads, “Your Meter Money Will Make A Difference: Signage, Lighting, Benches, Paving”


This created a “virtuous cycle” in which parking revenue funded community improvements that attracted more visitors which increased the parking revenue, allowing further improvements. This resulted in extensive redevelopment of buildings, new businesses and residential development. Parking is no longer a problem for customers, who can almost always find a convenient space. Local sales tax revenues have increased far faster than in other shopping districts with lower parking rates, and nearby malls that offer free customer parking. This indicates that charging market rate parking (i.e., prices that result in 85-90% peak-period utilization rates) with revenues dedicated to local improvements can be an effective ways to support urban redevelopment.



Twelve Steps for Downtown Revitalization (Leinberger)

Developer Christopher B. Leinberger identifies twelve specific steps for local officials, businesses and community members to create a vital, healthy and economically-successful downtown (see his report for details).

1.       Capture the Vision

2.       Develop a Strategic Plan

3.       Forge a Healthy Private/Public Partnership

4.       Make the Right Thing Easy

5.       Establish Business Improvement Districts and Other Non-Profits

6.       Create a Catalytic Development Company

7.       Create an Urban Entertainment District

8.       Develop a Rental Housing Market

9.       Pioneer an Affordability Strategy

10.   Focus on For-Sale Housing

11.   Develop a Local-Serving Retail Strategy

12.   Re-create a Strong Office Market



Smart Growth Infill

The publication, Getting To Smart Growth: 100 Policies for Implementation (SGN, 2002 and 2004) describes a variety of specific policy reforms and administrative strategies to support more efficient development. Below are some examples:


·         Many communities offer “density bonuses” to developers who meet certain design objectives.


·         The Washington State Department of Transportation has flexible design standards that allow state highway funds to be used to create wider sidewalks, curb extensions, bus stops and crosswalk improvements on urban arterials.


·         The San Francisco Bay Area Metropolitan Transportation Commission provides special funding for transit-oriented development improvements such as pedestrian and cycling facilities, streetscape improvements and transit village development for areas within one-third mile walk of a transit station. Funding increased with development densities: $1,000 per bedroom in projects containing 25 units per acre, and up to $2,000 per bedroom for developments with 60+ units per acre.


·         The city of Fort Collins, Colorado, uses a Land Development Guidance System (LDGS) which gives developers density bonuses for projects that have desirable, Smart Growth design features.


·         The Maryland DOT’s neighborhood conservation program provides funding for transportation improvements on roadways and other transportation facilities located in state designated neighborhoods (often referred to as neighborhood revitalization areas), where the improvements will provide economic revitalization and improved livability to older, run-down neighborhoods. Eligible projects include roadway repaving or reconstruction, roadway signing, lighting and traffic controls, walking improvements, bus shelters and transit station access improvements, streetscaping, etc.


·         The city of Austin, Texas uses a Smart Growth Matrix to analyze development proposals ( It is designed to measure how well a project supports Smart Growth objectives taking into account its location, its proximity to transit, urban design characteristics, compliance with neighborhood plans, projected tax revenue, and other policy priorities. Financial incentives may be available to developments with high scores, such as waiver of development fees and public investment in new or improved infrastructure such as water and sewer lines, streets or streetscape improvements, or similar facilities.



References And Resources For More Information


Abley (2009), Commercial Activities In Auckland: Why A Centres Plus Approach Is Best – A Transportation Perspective, Auckland Regional Council (


American Planning Association ( has extensive resources for community and transport planning.


Eugenie L. Birch (2005), Who Lives Downtown?, Metropolitan Policy Program, The Brookings Institution (


Charles C. Bohl (2002), Place Making: Developing Town Centers, Main Streets and Urban Villages, Urban Land Institute (


Marlon G. Boarnet, et al. (2011), “Retrofitting the Suburbs to Increase Walking,” Access 39 (; at


Michael Carley, Karryn Kirk and Sarah McIntosh (2001), Retailing, Sustainability And Neighbourhood Regeneration, (ISBN 1 84263 49 0) Joseph Roundtree Foundation (


Cities For Mobility ( is a global network of cities that promotes the development of sustainable and efficient transportation systems.


Congress for New Urbanism ( is a movement centered on intelligent neighborhood planning, and human scale urban communities.


CNU (2003), Civilizing Downtown Highways: Putting New Urbanism To Work On California’s Highways, Congress for the New Urbanism (


Eichenfield and Associates (2002), Strategies for Revitalizing Our Downtowns and Neighborhoods: Evaluating California Main Street Programs, Local Government Commission.


Reid Ewing, Rolf Pendall and Don Chen (2002), Measuring Sprawl and Its Impacts, Smart Growth America (


Reid Ewing and Shima Hamidi (2014), Measuring Urban Sprawl and Validating Sprawl Measures, Metropolitan Research Center at the University of Utah for the National Cancer Institute, the Brookings Institution and Smart Growth America (; at


Lawrence Frank and Gary Pivo (1995),Impacts of Mixed Use and Density on Utilization of Three Modes of Travel: SOV, Transit and Walking,” Transportation Research Record 1466, TRB (, pp. 44-55.


Joel Hirschhorn and Paul Souza (2001), New Community Design to the Rescue; Fulfilling Another American Dream, National Governor’s Association, (


Matthew J. Holian and Matthew E. Kahn (2012), The Impact of Center City Economic and Cultural Vibrancy on Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Transportation, MTI Report 11-13, Mineta Transportation Institute (; at


International Downtown Association ( is a world leader and champion for vital and livable urban centers.


David Jacobs (2008), Eight is Enough, Business Report, 4 August 2008; at


J. Richard Kuzmyak, Jerry Walters, Hsi-hwa Hu, Jason Espie, and Dohyung Kim (2012), Travel Behavior and Built Environment: Exploring the Importance of Urban Design at the Non-Residential End of the Trip, Lincoln Institute of Land Policy (; at


Christopher B. Leinberger (2005), Turning Around Downtown: Twelve Steps to Revitalization, Metropolitan Policy Program, The Brookings Institution (


LGC (2004), Creating Great Neighborhoods: Density in Your Community, Local Government Commission (, US Environmental Protection Agency and the National Association of Realtors; at


Todd Litman (2003), Evaluating Criticism of Smart Growth, VTPI (; at


Todd Litman (2003), The Value of Downtowns, VTPI (;


Todd Litman (2004), Understanding Smart Growth Savings: What We Know About Public Infrastructure and Service Cost Savings, And How They are Misrepresented By Critics, Victoria Transport Policy Institute (; at


Todd Litman (2006), Community Cohesion As A Transport Planning Objective, Victoria Transport Policy Institute (; available at


Todd Litman (2006), Parking Management: Strategies, Evaluation and Planning, Victoria Transport Policy Institute (; at


Todd Litman (2008), Recommendations for Improving LEED Transportation and Parking Credits, VTPI (; at


Main Street Center ( provides information on ways to revitalize traditional commercial areas through historic preservation and grassroots-based economic development.


Michael Manfille and Donald Shoup (2004), “People, Parking, and Cities,” Access 25, (, Fall 2004, pp. 2-8.


Hugh McClintock (2004), Urban Regeneration, University of Nottingham Online Planning Resources ( Includes many bibliographies related to urban redevelopment and downtown planning.


National Trust for Historic Preservation ( focuses on preserving downtown areas and historic buildings.


Oregon Downtown Development Association (2001), Parking Management Made Easy: A Guide to Taming the Downtown Parking Beast, Transportation and Growth Management Program, Oregon DOT and Dept. of Environmental Quality (


Project for Public Spaces ( works to create and sustain public places that build communities. It provides a variety of resources for developing more livable communities.


San Francisco Planning and Urban Research Association (SPUR) ( is a leading organization doing research to develop more livable urban areas.


SGA (2015), (Re)Building Downtown: A Guidebook for Revitalization, Smart Growth America (; at


SGN (2002 and 2004), Getting To Smart Growth: 100 Policies for Implementation, and Getting to Smart Growth II: 100 More Policies for Implementation, Smart Growth Network ( and International City/County Management Association (


Ruth Steiner, et al. (2012), Impact of Parking Supply and Demand Management on Central Business District (CBD) Traffic Congestion, Transit Performance and Sustainable Land Use, Florida Department of Transportation Research Center (; at


Toolbox for Regional Policy Analysis Website ( by the US Federal Highway Administration, describes analytical methods for evaluating regional economic, social and environmental impacts of various transportation and land use policies.


Urban Land Institute ( is a professional organization for developers, which provides practical information on innovative development practices, including infill and sustainable community planning.


Urban Renaissance Institute ( works to help cities and their regions flourish by applying innovative market-based policies.


USEPA, Smart Growth Policy Database, US Environmental Protection Agency (


Kenneth H. Voigt and Jeffrey S. Polenske (2006), “Applying New Urbanism Street Principles in Downtown Milwaukee, WI, USA,” ITE Journal, Vol. 76, No. 5 (, May 2006, pp. 26-30.

This Encyclopedia is produced by the Victoria Transport Policy Institute to help improve understanding of Transportation Demand Management. It is an ongoing project. Please send us your comments and suggestions for improvement.




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