Downtown streetscape precedents: (Left) Multiple street-level storefronts with signs help distinghish downtown as a special place. (Right) Recessed entries welcome without interrupting the continuity
of street frontage
The character of its public spaces determines a downtown’s vitality.
New and old
buildings, through their location and orientation to sidewalks and other spaces,
shape outdoor space. Streets play an especially important role as public spaces; accommodating public use at ground level along downtown streets is critical to creating a socially and visually stimulating downtown. Street-level façades and streetscape amenities offer the greatest opportunity to support pedestrian activity.
Create retail nodes.
1. Locate and orient buildings to defi ne public
streets and civic spaces. Cluster stores to create
nodes of activity, such as around key intersections,
to counteract the powerful economic forces that are
drawing away downtown customers.
2. Design and situate streetscape elements including lights, trees, and building elements such as signs and awnings to reflect the location and scale of adjacent streets, buildings, and uses.
3. Coordinate lighting fixture design with other street amenities to create a unified downtown identity. Streetscape elements in the downtown core should be civic in design and function, to communicate downtown’s important role in the public life of the region.
4. To help make Third and Main the region’s main streets, new development proposals must bring activity to these streets. Take the indoors outdoors by spilling interior space and uses, such as dining areas, onto sidewalks and plazas, and bring the outdoors into buildings by opening interior spaces to views of street life. Be sure to maintain sufficient clear space to allow side-by-side passage of two pedestrians along the sidewalk.