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Old 02-22-2014, 02:31 PM
 
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So, I know that the walkability (the ability to walk to and from areas of commercial activity/employment and places of residence) is a popular concept among urbanists, and among many users here. But how would one fit in a factory or manufacturing facilities into a walkable neigborhood? Now keep in mind, I'm not talking about big steel mills or oil refineries here, I'm talking about light industry, like garment factories or parts factories. How could those be integrated into a walkable, dense environment? Could they fit in modern mixed-use communities at all, or are they destined to develop in seperate areas? Are there any examples of modern factories pulling this off? (if so, please give examples)
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Old 02-22-2014, 02:39 PM
 
Location: The City
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OuttaTheLouBurbs View Post
So, I know that the walkability (the ability to walk to and from areas of commercial activity/employment and places of residence) is a popular concept among urbanists, and among many users here. But how would one fit in a factory or manufacturing facilities into a walkable neigborhood? Now keep in mind, I'm not talking about big steel mills or oil refineries here, I'm talking about light industry, like garment factories or parts factories. How could those be integrated into a walkable, dense environment? Could they fit in modern mixed-use communities at all, or are they destined to develop in seperate areas? Are there any examples of modern factories pulling this off? (if so, please give examples)

Really look at places like NYC, Boston, Philly and Baltimore as the blueprint
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Old 02-22-2014, 04:10 PM
 
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Originally Posted by kidphilly View Post
Really look at places like NYC, Boston, Philly and Baltimore as the blueprint
I was going to say that many housing developments in cities were built around factories as housing for factory workers. Company towns are good examples of this, especially in terms of heavy industry.
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Old 02-22-2014, 04:16 PM
 
Location: Tijuana Exurbs
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For generations, factories were an integral part of most walkable neighborhoods. The factories needed to be located near their workforce which couldn't afford the cost of commuting. Management had to commute from further off middle and upper class suburbs. Nowadays, modern offices are located near the homes of the executives for their convenience, and its the far greater numbers of the lower paid work force which must commute long distances.

But to more closely examine the OPs question, when re-creating walkable neighborhoods with a factory component, imagine a pie with a commercial center. Outside the core, 3/4s of the pieces would be devoted to housing, and one quarter devoted to industrial uses. I think certain parts of modern land use and zoning will not be abandoned. One of those key tenets is the separation of uses, particularly housing and industrial. It's just that in a re-worked modern walkable neighborhood, the uses won't be separated by such fast distances as they are in a modern planned city.
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Old 02-22-2014, 05:22 PM
 
Location: Thunder Bay, ON
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Tokyo would be a modern example.

http://goo.gl/maps/WjedX
http://goo.gl/maps/adgqA

Houston as well.
http://goo.gl/maps/GamCv

The more artisanal industries that don't involve too bulky volumes of goods (ie trucks) and are non polluting (soil/groundwater or air) or noisy can theoretically fit in anywhere without causing much trouble. You have SoMa in San Francisco or a couple districts in Vancouver that have lots of little warehouses, often arts and design oriented rather than truly industrial.

Industry that's more likely to generate noise, truck traffic or moderate pollution would probably be better in smaller segregated districts near transportation corridors. Truly noxious stuff like meat packing plants, steel mills and oil refineries and chemical plants, or dangerous like an explosives factory, you'd want more strongly segregated.

Most of the industrial areas these days isn't very heavy though. Mechanic shops, metal fabrication, warehouses and logistics... often they're not even truly industrial with car dealerships, furniture or hardware stores, outlet shops...

However, industrial areas are often low density in the sense that they generate relatively few trips (not including freight) per built sf, so it makes more sense to put them next to corridors of trade than major transit routes or in neighbourhood centres.
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Old 02-22-2014, 07:27 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
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We don't really make anything like we use to, so I don't think we would be building neighborhoods around factories.
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Old 02-24-2014, 12:54 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OuttaTheLouBurbs View Post
So, I know that the walkability (the ability to walk to and from areas of commercial activity/employment and places of residence) is a popular concept among urbanists, and among many users here. But how would one fit in a factory or manufacturing facilities into a walkable neigborhood? Now keep in mind, I'm not talking about big steel mills or oil refineries here, I'm talking about light industry, like garment factories or parts factories. How could those be integrated into a walkable, dense environment? Could they fit in modern mixed-use communities at all, or are they destined to develop in seperate areas? Are there any examples of modern factories pulling this off? (if so, please give examples)
Your premise is faulty. Walkability has nothing to do with the ability to walk from point A to point B (an extremely low bar requiring nothing more than a path upon which one might walk) but rather a whole host of qualities than make a place an attractive place to walk in. Urbanists have far higher standards than merely a designated path for pedestrians. Walkable places must have useful places to walk to, be comfortable, be interesting, be safe and perceived as being safe, etc.

That should inform the rest of your question.

Here's a nice short video on walkability - spoiler alert - it isn't a sidewalk that makes a place walkable.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=meWAIeY9Mgk

Last edited by Komeht; 02-24-2014 at 01:23 PM..
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Old 02-24-2014, 03:00 PM
 
Location: Pittsburgh, PA (Morningside)
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I've been thinking about this a lot lately. It was in the news here recently that the major newspaper, which has been located downtown, is selling their building to cut costs. While the journalists and other white-collar employees will move to rented office space somewhere else downtown, the unionized printing employees are going to be moved out to a facility a ways from the city limits, out near the airport.

It continues a trend which has been little discussed. Historically, as noted, factories were "walkable," insofar as they were within residential neighborhoods, and often even had bars directly across the street where workers would congregate and socialize when they went off shift. As mega-mills became common from the 1920s through 1940s, these became rarer, simply because the expansion obliterated so much of the neighborhood it became hard to actually walk to them. But they were still on city streets, in gridded neighborhoods.

Later came the move to the suburbs. This happened for several reasons. One, the movement from rail-based transport of goods to big rigs meant new facilities which had ample turning radius's were needed. Secondly, the cost of retrofitting old factories was in many cases higher than actually building a new one (particularly when modern factories are little but a metal box). Finally, there's the aspect of union avoidance. It was easy for unions to leaflet workers on public sidewalks and in public streets, but the retreat into private office parks meant few people were out of their cars to talk to anyone, and often organizers could be blocked from the office parks entirely.

I honestly do not ultimately think the way things are going any blue-collar jobs will remain in cities, aside from service jobs for the wealthy. I already see the changes in my own gentrified neighborhood. It does contain a lot of industry still by the river, but the newcomers are getting mad at how frequently tractor-trailers make poor turns onto residential streets and end up accidentally totaling cars. It's a matter of time I think before zoning is changed and the last few employers of size are pushed out.
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Old 02-24-2014, 05:26 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,165 posts, read 29,655,359 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IC_deLight View Post
In other words, the urbanistas say "me, me, me".

The video is a good example of the nature of the urbanistas. The narrator notes that schools, shops, etc. - all that they would need are within "5 minutes" walk or transit. That's not good enough though. She wants to eliminate or radically change other areas within the 5 minute radius to suit her fancy...so she can "window shop".

Glossary of Komeht's urbanist terms as described above:

Path
A designated (i.e., exclusive) path - because the world revolves around them
Path + defined route to get somewhere, like a road for people not in a car.
Quote:
Standards of attractiveness
"Only things deemed attractive are permitted here". They call it "standards". Who decides what is "attractive" and why is that a recipe for anything other than chaos? It seems that a lot of very ugly things have been done in the name of pursuit of beauty/aesthetics.

Standards of usefulness
"Only stores of interest to me are allowed". They call it "useful". This is code for "no Home Depots", etc. Why and who gets to decide what is "interesting" ? Are the stores subject to a "community lease"? I think not.
Obviously, Home Depot is not a key place to walk to, and it doesn't fit their business model well. But you can make a big box store (like home depot or walmart) into something that is more people scaled. One easy way, is to add windows at the store front, instead of a concrete or brick wall. And use them as a product display. Generally speaking, big box stores don't care about being "people scaled" as that is their nature. That doesn't mean they aren't useful or interesting. But if a box is only a box, it is hard to make it interesting.

Quote:
Standards of comfort
What, padded sidewalks? Should someone be stationed to hand you an umbrella, drink, coat along the way?
sidewalks, greenery, protections from speeding traffic. These aren't exclusionary ideas.

Quote:
So much for "standards"
The only thing urbanistas have are demands that they want to impose on other people and other people's property. The only "standard" that comes out of this is that narcissism and ego-centrism are standard traits of urbanistas.
Ideally, places should have a mix of uses and be accessible to many audiences. Designing for drivers and non-drivers isn't rocket science, but a lot of the time we focus on pitting one against the other, but the two are compatible.
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Old 02-24-2014, 10:20 PM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

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Location: Long Island / NYC
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I'm not sure why posters have such trouble staying on topic. If your post has been deleted for being off topic, don't continue to write off topic posts. And note the thread title.
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