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Old 02-14-2014, 05:30 PM
 
1,709 posts, read 1,682,211 times
Reputation: 1843

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Quote:
Originally Posted by IC_deLight View Post
Actually they don't have any such right. They don't even have a right to be on the property. Next.
Wait-why is it that you complain about me trying to take away people's rights in the following quote, and yet, you outright say that those who wish to walk to where they shop "don't have any such right?" Who are you to tell who has rights and who doesn't?

??? you hardly speak for the city population - or the merchants.
Who are you to dictate that the owner of the property needs to conform to your personal opinion as to what the property should look like? Your diatribe about protecting "rights" that don't actually exist is a common tactic for trying to rationalize abrogating the actual existing rights of others.[/quote]

Can I ask what rights are breached by asking to be able to make strip malls more convenient for walkers? I'm not calling for the death of the car here, and I'm not asking for driving to be made impossible. And I'm not telling anyone to do this, they don't have to listen to me. But it would have a positive impact on their business and the nearby community. I would imagine from personal experience that if people can walk, they usually will. You're welcome to correct me if I'm wrong on that one.

Quote:
Maybe they would use the strip mall, maybe they wouldn't. Depends on the goods and services offered. It's interesting that these mythical folks can somehow make the trek for the two miles with the plan to make the same trek back burdened with goods and yet you believe the parking lot poses some insurmountable barrier for these individuals. Did you actually read what you wrote?
What if they're not bringing back goods? What if they're just grabbing a bite to eat, or going to a gym? And what if what they bought consists of just one or two bags of lightweight stuff? It's not like it's impossible to carry it.

Quote:
Your personal opinion. Now your true objective has become apparent. Like all the other elitists, the other chaff was about rationalizing why the world needs to change to meet your personal aesthetic preferences.
While I will say it is my personal opinion that strip malls are often pretty ugly, I'd rather have an architecturally hideous building I could walk to than a gorgeous structure that is hidden behind a parking lot. Appearance doesn't trump walkability for me, I'd just rather walk to the places I spend my money. I'm no "elitist" who only shops at the most historic and beautiful places and ignores all strip malls, I just want the places I eat and shop at to be friendlier to those who want to walk there. Calling me an "elitist" does nothing to advance your argument.

Let me just state that a lot of this comes from personal experience. I live in the suburbs, only 1 mile away from the places I eat and work. And yet it's quite a trek to get to these places. I have to compete with parking lots for half of my journey, and it's honestly a major pain in the rear. Do I still make the journey? Yes. Do I walk frequently? Yes. But having to either walk on the street and parking lot uncomfortably close to moving cars, or walking over uneven and unwelcoming terrain between lots is just obnoxious and debilitating. The first fifth of my journey (or last fifth, depending on which way I'm going) actually does have a sidewalk, and that part of the journey is fastest and far more comfortable-I can bike that route if I want to, I can plug in my headphones and listen to music on my iPhone, I don't have to worry about tripping over a massive tree root or a concrete curb, and I don't have to be concerned about cars at all.

Now before I get the "if you want them to encourage walkability, you should stop doing business there." I'd do that but unfortunately it wouldn't make a difference, it would just be a drop in the bucket in terms of business loss, and not many people would join me in such a movement so leadership by example is out the window. The only way I could encourage other people to push for a more walkable strip mall would be to push for more and better sidewalks in my community-that would work towards encouraging a fully walkable community, IMO.

 
Old 02-14-2014, 05:43 PM
 
1,709 posts, read 1,682,211 times
Reputation: 1843
Quote:
Originally Posted by oldtrader View Post
The majority of customers, will be driving to the shopping area of their choice. In the first example you see lots of cars in the parking lot. There is a place for the people to park so they can shop. In the other example there is no parking, and not there are no people walking down the street. One side of the street with the parking lot will do lots of business, and the ones on the other side of the street will do very little. The one side has a big busy grocery store, with parking for customers. The other side cannot have such stores, as parking is needed for them.

Note it is a busy street. Note the parking lot has lots of cars. Parking is needed for the businesses that want a steady flow of customers. To try to make everything walkable in an area such as this is not even reasonable. The heavy car traffic, says this is not a walkable shopping area and people are going shopping using cars.
Also note that this is one picture of one singular moment. It doesn't capture any other time of day, when either group of businesses could have less or more customers. You had an interesting observation at first glance, but not one that has much merit.

And let me just say this to everyone-I think that if people absolutely have to use cars to get to where they need to shop, they should have the option for parking. But in this case, the parking should be tucked away behind the buildings-that way, those who wish to drive can drive, and those who wish to walk can walk. I have no problem with new strip malls being built like this, and I feel like it's the ultimate compromise. My question is what to do with the ones we already have, and how we could encourage walkability without disturbing the current flow of business they have or disrupting parking availability (at least not too much). Even a simple crosswalk that goes across the length of the parking lot and connects the sidewalks to the stores would work great.
 
Old 02-14-2014, 05:45 PM
 
2,941 posts, read 3,871,595 times
Reputation: 1439
Quote:
Originally Posted by OuttaTheLouBurbs View Post

Now before I get the "if you want them to encourage walkability, you should stop doing business there." I'd do that but unfortunately it wouldn't make a difference, it would just be a drop in the bucket in terms of business loss, and not many people would join me in such a movement so leadership by example is out the window. The only way I could encourage other people to push for a more walkable strip mall would be to push for more and better sidewalks in my community-that would work towards encouraging a fully walkable community, IMO.
This is what is needed before anyone considers changing the strip mall to accommodate pedestrians. If you live in a burb without much in the way of sidewalks don't expect it to be geared to walkers.
 
Old 02-14-2014, 05:51 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,171 posts, read 29,774,504 times
Reputation: 26681
Quote:
Originally Posted by chirack View Post

I also don't see much nearby housing or bus routes(could be there but didn't see any signs) that could supply pedestrians for it to be worth the stores adding more pedestrian access.
Well the bus thing is a separate issue (they rerouted, and now the city bus no longer stops near the Target part, but it does stop at the east end of this giant plaza near the grocery store, and not too far from the Home Depot.) Although the city bus doesn't go there, directly, stopping around 3/4 of a mile away, there is a free business district bus that stops in front (runs all day at 15-30 minute intervals from about 7a-10p and connects the area to the BART train).

What you can't see from the angle I showed, is that there is a condo/apartment building of around 700 units 2 blocks away, a 250 unit senior home across the street. There is a bike lane that runs adjacent. And within a mile or so, there are at least 10-15k people.

Within 2-3 miles are some of the denser areas in Oakland (and downtown), that are full of non-drivers and bikers (the hipster neighborhood probably has a lot of bikers). And it is also the closest Target/Strip Mall/Etc for UC Berkeley which is about 3-4 miles away, and the only one that is semi-transit accessible for the university population.

West Oakland is just south of this "mall," and the nearby grocery is the only store for all of West Oakland (which has about 30k people, 33% of people who only use transit/walking/etc, 40% of residents have no car as it is one of the poorest areas of Oakland). The grocery is technically in that same shopping center, about 1/3 of a mile from Target. Maybe a little further. It is actually on the city bus route.

So they have under infrastructure-d for the amount of non-drivers that go there. The bus stop adjacent generally has 15 people waiting all day during the bus' hours. There are people waiting at the stop every time I go by.

And it is the only game in town for anyone who lives in North Oakland, West Oakland, Central Oakland, and most of Berkeley.

The feeder area of that strip mall is about (the 4 mile radius) is about 150-160k people (give or take), where 20% of the people only use transit, and lots of people are "car lite" (the feeder area pretty much has the best access to transit/amenities in the entire county), and another 8-10% primarily use their bikes. Technically, people at the north end of Berkeley could go to neighboring Albany, and the Target there is completely transit inaccessible, so that might decrease the total radius by 20k.

I live less than 3 miles away, and would totally bike there if it wasn't so pedestrian/bike hostile in the strip mall. I see so many near accidents with the cars, that I wouldn't want to ride my bike there, even though there is bike parking and it is not far from my place, and there is a bike lane or quiet alternate street the entire way.

If it was a totally suburban area, where walking was rare, I'd have a different opinion, but reality is a lot of people get their by transit, at least 20%.

That strip mall has at least 33% more parking and concrete surface area than it needs.
 
Old 02-14-2014, 06:23 PM
 
Location: Inis Fada
16,855 posts, read 29,206,859 times
Reputation: 7416
Stony Brook Village Center My community has the first planned shopping center in the county. It is now 73 years old, has a very attractive colonial village layout. It curves around a village green and overlooks a harbor. There were plenty of parking spots in the front, but the bulk up behind, so parking would not detract from the aesthetic appeal. Wide sidewalks and defined crossings make it more pleasant and safe for pedestrians.
 
Old 02-14-2014, 06:49 PM
 
12,325 posts, read 15,254,652 times
Reputation: 8126
I guess it's the cheapest way to develop commercial property, a lot less than building an enclosed mall. What bugs me most about them is they are mostly empty. Maybe full for a brief flash of time then one moves or goes out of business.
 
Old 02-14-2014, 06:59 PM
 
Location: Thunder Bay, ON
2,610 posts, read 3,772,887 times
Reputation: 1616
Quote:
Originally Posted by IC_deLight View Post
Your personal opinion. Now your true objective has become apparent. Like all the other elitists, the other chaff was about rationalizing why the world needs to change to meet your personal aesthetic preferences.
Your personal opinion.
Your personal opinion.
Irrelevant red herring.
Regarding aesthetics.

I guess technically it's an opinion (because it's subjective) that

Rotting meat smells bad
Quitting smoking is difficult
70F and sunshine is pleasant
Flowers are pretty

However I think the vast majority of people would agree with the above statements and you don't really have to justify them, so I wouldn't just dismiss them as "personal opinion".

As opposed to say...

The president is doing a good job
We should build more modernist architecture
Jessica Simpson is a great role model
Artichokes are tasty

The second set of statements would have a fair bit of people both agreeing and disagreeing with them, so you would have to justify why you think they are true (or in the case of artichokes is difficult to justify for or against).

Going back to strip malls. Does anyone really find parking lots more attractive than 19th century buildings (assuming they're both relatively well maintained)? I'm sure there are people who might rather have the parking lots as a compromise in the name of convenience (as a driver), but do they actually find the parking lot more attractive???
 
Old 02-14-2014, 07:09 PM
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Location: Long Island / NYC
45,993 posts, read 42,149,346 times
Reputation: 14811
Quote:
Originally Posted by memph View Post
Regarding aesthetics.

I guess technically it's an opinion (because it's subjective) that

Rotting meat smells bad
Quitting smoking is difficult
70F and sunshine is pleasant
Flowers are pretty

However I think the vast majority of people would agree with the above statements and you don't really have to justify them, so I wouldn't just dismiss them as "personal opinion".

As opposed to say...

The president is doing a good job
We should build more modernist architecture
Jessica Simpson is a great role model
Artichokes are tasty

The second set of statements would have a fair bit of people both agreeing and disagreeing with them, so you would have to justify why you think they are true (or in the case of artichokes is difficult to justify for or against).

Going back to strip malls. Does anyone really find parking lots more attractive than 19th century buildings (assuming they're both relatively well maintained)? I'm sure there are people who might rather have the parking lots as a compromise in the name of convenience (as a driver), but do they actually find the parking lot more attractive???
Great post and comparison, though there's probably a few in the weather forum that would disagree with the bolded, or at least want more interesting weather.

As for strip malls, I posted a 19th century commercial block that I thought was fine but slightly gritty and not fancy looking. I assumed most would find it somewhat attractive or at least much better than strip malls. Malloric's reaction sounded like he didn't think that a strip mall wouldn't be any worse aesthetically though perhaps he could clarify:

http://www.city-data.com/forum/32075897-post189.html
 
Old 02-14-2014, 08:53 PM
 
Location: Vallejo
14,101 posts, read 16,155,897 times
Reputation: 12713
Aside from the double negative, correct. I've seen plenty of strip malls that aren't as nice and some that I would consider nicer. I don't particularly like old architecture better than new architecture, prefer landscaping to cementscaping. I also didn't find quitting smoking to be all that difficult either, although I know some people really struggle to.
 
Old 02-15-2014, 07:54 AM
 
2,827 posts, read 3,363,584 times
Reputation: 3037
Quote:
Originally Posted by OuttaTheLouBurbs View Post
Wait-why is it that you complain about me trying to take away people's rights in the following quote, and yet, you outright say that those who wish to walk to where they shop "don't have any such right?" Who are you to tell who has rights and who doesn't?
You falsely claim they have a "right". Feel free to identify the source of such right.
In fact the property they travel on is privately owned and therefore the "people" you refer to are invitees or licensees at best and subject to be removed from the property. In short they don't even have a "right" to be on the property much less the "right" you claim.

Quote:
Can I ask what rights are breached by asking to be able to make strip malls more convenient for walkers? I'm not calling for the death of the car here, and I'm not asking for driving to be made impossible. And I'm not telling anyone to do this, they don't have to listen to me. But it would have a positive impact on their business and the nearby community. I would imagine from personal experience that if people can walk, they usually will. You're welcome to correct me if I'm wrong on that one.
You can always propose. When you seek government mandate or to demand such control over the property of others you exceed the scope of "asking". You didn't ask at all. Instead you posited that strip malls were "wholly out of place". You also claimed that it was "impossible to walk across the parking lot to the businesses themselves" which of course is obviously untrue. Then you continued to complain that strip malls were an "eyesore", "take up massive space", etc. Obviously you believe that the world needs to change to be beautiful for you and you are here arguing about it.

Quote:
What if they're not bringing back goods? What if they're just grabbing a bite to eat, or going to a gym? And what if what they bought consists of just one or two bags of lightweight stuff? It's not like it's impossible to carry it.
These "in shape", willing-to-walk-four-miles-for-a-bite-to-eat folks can't walk across a parking lot?

Quote:
While I will say it is my personal opinion that strip malls are often pretty ugly, I'd rather have an architecturally hideous building I could walk to than a gorgeous structure that is hidden behind a parking lot. Appearance doesn't trump walkability for me, I'd just rather walk to the places I spend my money. I'm no "elitist" who only shops at the most historic and beautiful places and ignores all strip malls, I just want the places I eat and shop at to be friendlier to those who want to walk there. Calling me an "elitist" does nothing to advance your argument.
When you expect or try to use governmental mandate to impose such control over the property of others for your personal preferences you are elitist. Are you able to walk to the place, yes.

Quote:
Let me just state that a lot of this comes from personal experience. I live in the suburbs, only 1 mile away from the places I eat and work. And yet it's quite a trek to get to these places. I have to compete with parking lots for half of my journey, and it's honestly a major pain in the rear. Do I still make the journey? Yes. Do I walk frequently? Yes. But having to either walk on the street and parking lot uncomfortably close to moving cars, or walking over uneven and unwelcoming terrain between lots is just obnoxious and debilitating. The first fifth of my journey (or last fifth, depending on which way I'm going) actually does have a sidewalk, and that part of the journey is fastest and far more comfortable-I can bike that route if I want to, I can plug in my headphones and listen to music on my iPhone, I don't have to worry about tripping over a massive tree root or a concrete curb, and I don't have to be concerned about cars at all.
Compete with parking lots? What's the competition? Your complaint before was that the parking lot made it impossible to get to the businesses behind the parking lot. Now it is clear you weren't even intending to go to the businesses associated with the parking lot. You're complaining about all the other businesses and landowners on the way to your destination. Gee the world needs to change for you.

Are you looking for curbed lots to prevent cars from entering anywhere along the street? Are you looking for traffic control to prevent cars from entering entrance points to the lots while you cross the entrance point on foot or bike? You expect that the existence of your subdivision should impose a requirement on other land owners to tear out their parking lots, curb them to limit access, or to fill them with buildings to accommodate you? What radius beyond your domicile, pray tell, should businesses be compelled to adhere to your concepts?

Quote:
Now before I get the "if you want them to encourage walkability, you should stop doing business there." I'd do that but unfortunately it wouldn't make a difference, it would just be a drop in the bucket in terms of business loss, and not many people would join me in such a movement so leadership by example is out the window. The only way I could encourage other people to push for a more walkable strip mall would be to push for more and better sidewalks in my community-that would work towards encouraging a fully walkable community, IMO.
Promoting sidewalks is one thing, but your diatribe was clearly not about promoting sidewalks but rather elimination of parking lots and strip malls because you didn't like their appearance. After all, sidewalks wouldn't change your stated opinion of "eyesore", "take up massive space", etc.

On the topic of sidewalks:
Who do you expect to pay for the sidewalks?
How wide should these sidewalks be?
Who do you expect to pay for maintenance for the sidewalks?
Do you expect local government to take property from other property owners through eminent domain in order that sidewalks be created? Who pays for that?
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