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Old 01-08-2014, 01:51 PM
 
Location: Pittsburgh, PA (Morningside)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
Oh, for God's sake! Talk about "correlation does not equal causation". So people were willing to shop in a regular downtown with other races but not at a pedestrian mall?
The links I cited talk about concerns people have about "public perceptions of crime" and becoming " an “uncomfortable and threatening environment,” attracting “loiterers and transients.”" Again, it might be because I'm from the East, but those sound like they could be racial euphemisms.

Downtown pedestrian malls were meant to compete with shopping malls. Shopping malls have always had on site security to throw out drunks and homeless people. As pedestrian malls are generally public places, the standards for ejecting people are much higher.
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Old 01-08-2014, 01:53 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
Why won't shoppers make a trip to downtown?
Chicago centric. The city itself is so large that there are other places to shop outside of downtown that have parking or are cheaper or easier to get to including nearby burbs. The only reason why you would shop downtown is if there was something specific that you wanted that was there or you happen to work there and it is a great place to pick something up or you are visting. State street(amoung many other streets in town) used to be where people went to shop before the shoping malls in the burbs arose.

Downtown Chicago is mostly office workers and tourist and some residents theese days(but nothing like the rest of town). So after 8pm some parts esp. the loop really get empty. There are parts of it that go on latter and some nice resturants but not really the kind of place you would like to stroll around after dark and weekends. There are some great fests in the parks but that is that.
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Old 01-08-2014, 01:55 PM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
90,377 posts, read 109,156,621 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eschaton View Post
The links I cited talk about concerns people have about "public perceptions of crime" and becoming " an “uncomfortable and threatening environment,” attracting “loiterers and transients.”" Again, it might be because I'm from the East, but those sound like they could be racial euphemisms.

Downtown pedestrian malls were meant to compete with shopping malls. Shopping malls have always had on site security to throw out drunks and homeless people. As pedestrian malls are generally public places, the standards for ejecting people are much higher.
The Boulder/Denver police are an obvious presence on the Pearl St/16th St. Malls. I rarely see a security guard at my local mall, though the Broomfield police have a sub-station there.
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Old 01-08-2014, 02:00 PM
 
3,219 posts, read 4,207,268 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eschaton View Post
To an extent I agree, insofar as these projects tended to happen in the "bad days" of urban renewal, when cities were on the decline for a host of reasons. However, why do "classic downtowns" today go into recovery when they are converted away from being a pedestrian mall and back into a mixed-use street then?

Even if you argue that their failures within the U.S. were more a result of correlation than causation (e.g., they happened when cities were already declining for the most part), that still means that at best pedestrian malls provide no tangible benefits to development.
In the case of Chicago the car is a very useful thing and not all visters feel safe using public transit(lots of people drive in for various reasons even if the car is not the most practical way to get around downtown. ) By getting rid of the car you got ride of these shoppers and other shoppers (people who could drive downtown or drive to the mall in the burbs) were not encouraged to come downtown either. To be blunt who wants to get rained on/snowed on /pay for parking just to shop downtown? The pedestrain mall was not enough draw in itself.

By opening it up to cars you made is accesable to say the family from some small town in Iowa who wants to come vist the big city for cheap or say the suburban wife of an downtown worker to drive in and meet her husband after work for dinner or something.
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Old 01-08-2014, 02:24 PM
 
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Just to clarify, thread title is about pedestrian only streets, the links and discussion so far are about pedestrian shopping malls, there is a BIG difference. Many cities have closed a block and turned it into a park, plaza or pedestrian/bike way. Usually this is done to discourage thru traffic and to create parks or green space in underserved neighborhoods.

Pedestrian shopping malls are a different thing and I agree they have been less than successful.
I lived downtown Boulder for 30 years so I have seen the most successful example but understand they are
not a solution everywhere. The fact that some downtowns improve when the pedestrian mall is removed could be that a stale commercial area responds to any change or makeover (at least short term).



Quote:
Originally Posted by Komeht View Post
I don't see many folks arguing for pedestrian only streets (here or elsewhere). Almost all urbanists I know of are opposed to them.

Urbanists like complex, complete, multi-modal streets and shared spaces that accommodate automobiles, transit, pedestrians and cyclists.
I'm not opposed to pedestrian/bike only streets (as opposed to shopping malls).
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Old 01-08-2014, 02:31 PM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
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^^The OP did not provide a link, and he does reference pedestrian malls in his post. Maybe he could clarify.
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Old 01-08-2014, 02:37 PM
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Location: Western Massachusetts
46,078 posts, read 45,834,896 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
^^The OP did not provide a link, and he does reference pedestrian malls in his post. Maybe he could clarify.
The OP provided two links in the first sentence of his post.
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Old 01-08-2014, 02:51 PM
 
Location: Long Island
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In Santa Monica, CA, there is Third Street Promenade, which is a couple of blocks from Santa Monica Pier. Three blocks are permanently closed to cars and there is lots of shopping, entertainment, etc. Most people drive to get there, but there is ample parking. It was ALWAYS packed when I was working there.

It's quite nice actually. The ocean is right there as well. There are farmer's markets held there on certain days. I guess it helps that it is in a very touristy and near perfect weather year round.

Funny enough, there was a mall at the beginning of the Promenade that was renovated relatively recently. It was actually the least visited part of the whole place. It was run down and not many stores that were appealing:

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Old 01-08-2014, 02:52 PM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
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^^Missed that. Both links are about pedestrian malls.
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Old 01-08-2014, 03:09 PM
 
Location: South Beach and DT Raleigh
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Lincoln Road in Miami Beach definitely represents the opposite trend. Not only is its 8 blocks of pedestrian mall vibrant, it's some of (if not the most) expensive retail space in the state of Florida. For us locals, Lincoln Road acts like Miami Beach's public living room. It's one of the de facto gathering places to meet friends, dine, drink and be entertained.

IMO, many pedestrian malls failed because people didn't want to be in America's DTs for decades. If most of them hadn't been torn out prior to the general renaissance we've seen in America's cities, I would venture to say that many more of them would be successful today. Because many of these pedestrian malls were torn out just prior to America's renewed interest in its DTs, many are quick to immediately associate a DT renaissance with the elimination of the pedestrian mall. I am just not convinced that is true.

At the end of the day, it's the market that is going to drive the success and failure of pedestrian malls. If nobody wants to be there, retailers won't sign leases and the result will be decay and blight, which only reinforces people not wanting to be there and the whole thing spirals downward. If pedestrian malls were renovated instead of replaced as the renewed interest in DTs grew, I think they could have been a catalyst for more investment in housing and a more rapid return of retailers. After all, retailers want to go where there is a huge audience and successful urban pedestrian malls provide that sort of visibility.
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