How to fix sprawl: Build sidewalks! Okay, the solution isn’t THAT simple, but pedestrian-friendliness is a top goal for Tysons Corner, Va., which hopes to go from a city with “more parking spaces than jobs or residents” to a “green, walkable city,” according to Time magazine
That means building a lot more living space — upwards — and improving mass transit, bike-friendly infrastructure, and of course, sidewalks. The idea is to attract new residents eager to live where they work — who’ll either ditch their cars or rarely drive, preferring to navigate the new pedestrian paradise on foot or bike.
Tysons’ grand plan is not without its critics — and the arguments will be familiar to any city that’s trying to encourage smarter growth for more livable cities. A major critique, for example, is that people won’t ditch their cars — so bringing more residents into town will simply mean more traffic and congestion.
That disgruntled reasoning is something we often hear in Los Angeles, for example; LA Weekly even dedicated a cover story
to expressing that jaded opinion. Of course, growth is coming — both to L.A. and Tysons Corner — whether we prepare for it or not. Time
quotes Clark Tyler, the chairman of a task force behind this plan: A city like Tysons planned with smart growth in mind “will have a lot less traffic than if Tysons keeps developing the way it is.”