Friday, October 16, 2015

Joe Minicozzi and Jeff Speck in Fort Myers talking about Walkable Communities

Here is an excerpt from the article by June Fletcher at the Naples Daily News:
     [M]any cities are behind the curve in their planning process, said city planner Jeff Speck, author of Walkable City, and one of the city planners who worked on the downtown plans of both Naples and Fort Myers.
     “If you haven’t had code redesign in past 10 years, you probably don’t have a very good code, because they don’t allow you to be urban,” [emphasis added] said Speck, adding that since the 1960s, most codes were set up to promote suburban sprawl.
     But when a downtown is redesigned for walkability as Naples was in 1993 by the Miami-based architecture firm Duany Plater-Zyberk, it attracts people who are trying to escape the “miasma of sprawl,” he said.
     Speck said when he first saw Fifth Avenue in Naples, “you could fry an egg on the pavement and not be hit by a car.”
     Its current popularity with tourists and residents alike had much to do with reorganizing scattered parking, turning bland one-story buildings into two-story ones, and most importantly, bringing housing back into what had been a mix of retail and offices.
There is video from the conference in the link above featuring Joe Minicozzi (who many of you planners in West Palm Beach will remember).