Cities have been opening streets to people, and artists could help make them better

Select cities are responding to COVID-19 and stay-at-home restrictions by opening up streets to people, providing vital room for people to safely exercise as well as walk, bike, and roll to essential destinations while maintaining physical distancing. Smart Growth America is eager to help cities tap the expertise of artists and designers for this work, which can help produce better, more beloved projects that could remain after the pandemic, and foster helpful relationships between artists, city leaders, and transportation departments.

Complete Streets Creative Placemaking Transportation

Closed cities should open streets


Some cities around the country are responding to COVID-19 by opening up more street space for people as traffic has dwindled and more space is needed for people to safely be outside. But could these temporary changes lead to more public space for people even after the immediate threat has subsided? Possibly, but only if cities start acting to realize that future now.

Complete Streets Transportation

Webinar recap: Parking reform for 21st century communities

“Parking reform for 21st century communities: getting more out of public space,” was a joint webinar between the Form-Based Codes Institute and the State Smart Transportation Initiative. Speakers discussed the steps taken to rethink parking policies and prioritize people in public spaces in Hartford, CT and Atlanta, GA. A recording and recap of the webinar is now available.

Complete Streets Economic development Transportation

Parking spot or park? It’s PARK(ing) Day


Hundreds of cities around the world hold PARK(ing) Day on the third Friday in September where dozens of parking spots that are usually reserved for stationary, empty cars are transformed into places for people. Here’s a look at a few of the “parklets” scattered around our office in Washington, DC and what their creators had to say about them.

Creative Placemaking

Building a family-friendly city


In the conversations about cities, much of the media attention has been focused on young professional or older, retiring Americans. But families with children have been largely overlooked in the midst of our current urban renaissance. There has been some recent debated over whether the number of children (and thus families) is increasing or on the decline in cities, and it got us thinking: what would a place designed for families look like?

Complete Streets Creative Placemaking Economic development Transportation