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Green and Walkable Downtown Streetscape Improvements

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  • Green and Walkable Downtown Streetscape Improvements

    I was browsing the city website and came across the "Green and Walkable Downtown" streetscape project, which will begin with improvements to 104 Avenue and 103A Avenue between 97 Street and 105 Street. Does anyone have any further information on this project? I'm wondering if the ice district streetscape style will be continued for the whole stretch of this project.

    The vision for a green and walkable downtown includes improvements to the downtown streetscape that will make downtown more accessible, easier to navigate and more pleasant for pedestrians.
    By improving the streetscapes, more people will use the streets for walking and cycling. The Downtown will be a more attractive and desirable place for people of all ages
    The first of these phases will include streetscape upgrades to 104 Avenue and 103A Avenue between 97 Street and 105 Street.
    The result will be an interesting and attractive “grand boulevard” linking the Quarters, the Royal Alberta Museum, the Civic Precinct, the Arena and Entertainment District, the 104 Street Promenade, and MacEwan University.
    Future phases will be determined by Council and may include:
    • Streetscape upgrades to key streets throughout downtown.
    • An improved wayfinding system within downtown Edmonton. This system will include not only street-level signage for pedestrians, but also potentially web and mobile apps and wayfinding tools.

  • #2
    What makes our main streets great?
    City seeking input on building design regulations in shopping and restaurant districts

    February 14, 2017

    When Edmontonians think of main streets, they may automatically think of Whyte Avenue, an area known for its mix of stores and restaurants, and its vibrant street life with lots of people walking and enjoying the area.

    The City of Edmonton wants to foster high quality, pedestrian-oriented development along all of Edmonton’s main streets. Beginning on February 16th, 2017, City staff will begin hosting several formal and informal engagement opportunities where Edmontonians can provide feedback on what they’d like to see on Edmonton’s key main streets. Businesses and residents can share their views through open houses, pop-up events as well as through social media, and an online survey.

    Feedback provided will be used by the City as it reviews and updates regulations that support high quality, pedestrian-oriented development along Edmonton’s main streets. City staff began a review of the Pedestrian Commercial Shopping Street Overlay in March 2016.

    Features that promote lively main streets include constructing buildings next to the sidewalk instead of behind a front parking lot and allowing space for patios and street furniture.

    Dates and times of how Edmontonians can share their views on developing great main streets are listed on the City’s website.

    Media contact:

    Lisa Sobchyshyn
    Communications Advisor
    Development Services
    Last edited by IanO; 14-02-2017, 12:30 PM.



    • #3
      Been living in Vancouver for school, and the amount of main streets really highlight something that Edmonton is missing, this being one of them. Never being more than a 10 minute walk away from services is great, and they're also a great way to build density. There's a lot of streets in Edmonton that have the potential to become great main streets, and a lot of the ones we do have are derelict. These are the areas we should be focusing infill on. They tend to have better transit than the rest of the city, and the proximity to services is attractive to a lot of people. We can't create a dense. walkable city with duplexes alone, we need the walkable amenities as well.

      Another positive is along main corridors there tends to be less outcry from the community about infill(except for Whyte apparently) as it doesn't interfere as much with the neighbourhood.


      • #4
        'We can't create a dense. walkable city with duplexes alone, we need the walkable amenities as well.'

        Amen and can I get a bingo!



        • #5
          Well I'll try and help you out with that when I'm done learning how to plan in Vancouver


          • #6
            Excellent. It still amazes me how much density we put in some areas with little to ZERO ability to walk to a corner store.



            • #7
              I'm really liking the TOD plans being put forward in Metro Vancouver, the newest ones that are still in the discussion and concept phase really show a level of street design and maintenance that Edmonton doesn't. Hoping the "corridor" strategy goes ahead, for it should be better than buildings here in there and skinny homes
              Live and love... your neighbourhood.


              • #8
                I actually live close to one, they are extremely convenient. Would love to see that along the valley line. I think we have to be careful with being over ambitious though. There are plenty of areas in Edmonton that can support the density, but if we try and densify all of them, we get a bunch of slightly more dense neighbourhoods that still have poor transit and walkability. I think it's better to focus on a few small areas and make them dense first before moving onto other areas.


                • #9
                  For instance, the corner store program was create and the facade grant. What I'd like to see is looking at the older strip malls and looking at street-orientated zoning codes with heights of say 4 stories. If under the mature neighbourhood overlay, community commercial strips were zoned to allow mainfloor services with apartments up to 4 stories, you' get those good pockets and not these large infill plans that rob development from say Station Pointe, Blatchford, or Griesbach. Take that one strip mall you can think of in Hazeldean, Avonmore, Ottwell, Strathern, Bonnie Doon, Lendrum... all are about 50 years old, are one or a collection of structures, and will need to be replaced soon. They also have a fair bit of parking in the front from having grocery stores of some kind for the most part, and are on fairly large roads.

                  Kerrisdale is a good example of a small nighbourhood in Vancouver with a small collection of shops that build a main street for the area. Bonnie Doon From 83rd street west on Whyte, for instance, with proper zoning has elements of an old commercial strip mall and large parking lot that, with the LRT, can greatly add to street activity, walkability, and community safety, while ignoring "what will the mall do?". Using the proper codes within zoning for these commercial elements on neighbourhood streets is huge. Less BRZ's and more smart zoning. Lessen parking requirements, frontage to the street, mixed-use, and tie with sidewalk improvements.
                  Live and love... your neighbourhood.


                  • #10
                    Yup. Was actually considering looking at that for a research project. What neighourhoods in Edmonton have enough density already for walkable amenities/ are close to being able to support them. And from there, what areas would be best to locate the ammenities, as well as the extra density.

                    Imo we should also be looking at supporting multi family/mixed use along major corridors. Most of them are already well transit connected, and it allows you to add density and amenities without taking away from the bigger projects going on in the city. Like the development on 109th just south of Whyte. Replaces some single family, adds density and shops, and doesn't have too much of an effect on the inner neighourhood.

                    Replacing the old strip malls is good, but it wouldn't necessarily change the walkablility too much since the shops were already there, it would just be adding a few more people. New intermittent nodes of retail where SF stood along major corridors would help make things a lot more accessible. When I was looking into that research project I think I found that the average shopping trip in Edmonton was over 5km, which is way beyond the realm of walking, and makes transit super inconvenient.


                    • #11
                      Chinese city gets 'smartphone zombie' walkway

                      I am in no way entitled to your opinion...