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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Evaluating a New Urbanist Neighborhood

  • Author(s): Dill, Jennifer
  • et al.

New Urbanist neighborhoods aim to improve sustainability by reducing au- tomobile use, increasing walking and cycling, increasing the diversity of land uses and people, and increasing social capital, through strengthened personal and civic bonds. With more New Urbanist communities being constructed, it is now more feasible and necessary to evaluate their success. Much of the existing research uses older, traditional neighborhoods as a proxy for New Urbanism. This research compares a New Urbanist development with two conventional subdivisions and finds that some of the objectives are being fulfilled, in both direct and indirect ways. While New Urbanist residents are walking more, they may not be driving less as a direct result of the New Urbanist design features. Demographic factors appear to explain much of the differences in overall driving.

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