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I have a confession to make.
I was asked to come here today because
people have come to think of me as the
methods girl, a...
This is my hometown - westchester
meeyame
Where my most exhilarating memory is
playing an ersatz game of frogger
as i tigh...
This was life
This was work
This was play
Caddy corner form another form of
play
This was our best hope for place
I always say the best place to find
Miami's soul is within a tired strip mall
along an ot...
This is the typical scene outside of the
Versailles Café window – la ventanita –
where all the Cubans gather around
talkin...
I don't blame them, I'd miss this place too.
Miamians – Cuban exiles or otherwise – are obviously starving for place; crea...
I began working with a team
evaluating the Safe Routes to School
program in California. It was in that
project that I firs...
Overgrown bushes making an already
tiny 3ft sidewalk effectively unusable,
forcing kids to walk along the road or
do a bal...
Or in other cases forcing them to step over the
barricade that was placed between the sidewalk
and the road to purportedly...
I thought about Malibu’s beautiful but
sidewalk-less landscapes
I thought about Irvine’s beautiful yet
useless sidewalks abutting the
uttermost boring of cookie cutter
shopping plazas
I thought about the older parts of LA
that had great bones but didn’t feel
quite safe or inviting as a pedestrian
I thought about the quaint scale of
Laguna Beach
I thought about the dynamic nature of
the streets of Santa Monica
I realized that not everything mattered
in the same way ...
THE HIERARCHY OF WALKING NEEDS
I thought about the quaint scale of Laguna
Beach
That’s when I wrote the hierarchy of walking needs – my aim was to organize all these different
elements of urban design t...
My aim was to provide a framework for those studying the links between
urban design and physical activity – to encourage p...
The good
Dynamic public plazas encased by engaging
retail within buildings full of character
Organized chaos, with various forms of
mobility living side by side, that prioritized the
pedestrian
The importance of lighting
The contribution of the whimsical
The delicate balance between the private and
the public, the active
and the intimate
The importance of urban parks and providing
access to nature
The provision of bicycle infrastructure,
How a couple of chairs and tables transform
streets into buzzing centers of activ...
The juxtaposition of the high brow and the
ordinary
The interactive possibility of design
And creating true civic places
Offering different opportunities to sit
Rest
Linger
Watch other people – one of the best things to
do in great places
And adapting that to all climates and types of
places
And noting the resiliency of the human sprit,
even when we are not provided official places
to sit, or we are explicitly b...
The dynamic effect of food within the urban
landscape
The colors, the smell, the access
Playing with color and light
And understanding nightscapes
Having little nodes of activity and hidden
retreats
the desire for personalization
Admiring the so ridiculously quaint I want to
hug it facade
appreciating absolutely perfect urban form and
scale
And then the bad
Encountering so many obstacles along the way
So many times we are told we’re not wanted
or not thought of
Or not prioritized
When the sidewalk literally does end…
When there is literally a disconnect
When landscapes are littered with
homogenous, never-ending rivers of strip malls
Which force us to drive from one to the other
even when they are right across the street
from one another
When it’s obvious we are purposely not meant
to traverse a place
And finally, the ugly.
I think this was the no-turning back point for
me. I officially became that girl who could not
help...
So in the end, we identified 241 items and
after reliability testing, 162 ended up in the
original IMI.
It was GREAT! We h...
But even before the ink was dry on the IMI, I met a group of “urban brokers” – renegades – from
Houston that wanted to tel...
As I was slowly absorbing the concepts of
mezzanine finance and cap rates, I had one
pivotal conversation with one of my m...
And then came Brookings! I finally
had the opportunity to truly tie built
environment features not just to
walking, health...
Very Low
State of Place™ Index
Tied to Economic Value
0 - 20 Low
Moderate
Good
Very
Good21 - 40
41 - 60
61 - 80
81 -
100
*...
When you aggregate what that means in terms
of going from the lowest to the highest level of
State of Place, the numbers a...
And all in all, these premiums have serious
implications for economic development in
terms of retail and property tax base...
If you were to apply these numbers – in terms
of magnitude of impact – relative to Oklahoma
City, if it were to move up fo...
And if you extrapolate out what this means in
terms of economic development, even when
just talking about moving up two St...
TM
280+
URBAN
DESIGN
FEATURES
TOUCH,
SEE &
FEEL
WALKABILIT
Y
FROM
ARCADES
TO
ZEBRA STRIPES
TRAINING
VIDEO
+
INTERACTIVE
QUIZ
TRAINED COMMUNITY
MEMBERS OR STAFF
COLLECT DATA
MINUTES/B
L O C K
10-15
STATE OF
PLACE A...
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
DENSITY
FORM
CONNECTIVIT
Y
PROXIMITY
PARKS & PUBLIC
SPACES
RECREATIONAL FACILITIES
PEDESTRIAN & BI...
For Density, we are measuring building
compactness and height, not so much
population density – this is particularly
impor...
Related to that is Urban Form. Here we are
measuring streetscape continuity, so we take
into account building setbacks, ho...
CONNECTIVITY
Access &
Barriers
Proximity refers to the diversity of the land use
mix – the number of non-residential land uses
there are to walk to. So l...
With parks and public spaces, we include the
presence hard and soft scape public spaces, as
well as their quality and acce...
We also look at recreational facilities –
separately. This is getting a bit more at
recreational walking, but the literatu...
Pedestrian and bike amenities refer to aspects
of the built environment that make it
comfortable or pleasant to be a pedes...
Along with that, we look at traffic safety. Here
we are mainly focusing on the quality and
safety of the intersection as w...
Aesthetics goes beyond the visually pleasing; it
also includes aspects of urban design that
make places more dynamic and i...
Finally, personal safety refers not to actual
crime data but rather the aspects of the built
environment that influence ou...
So what does all of this mean for Oklahoma?
How can these methods, this amount of
definition, actually be weaved into a da...
When you look at a street like this in Norman,
where do you start? How do you convince
others to want to start? How can yo...
Identify Priorities
State of Place Index
State of Place Profiles
Scenario Analysis
Run Analytics
Platform conducts “multi-criterion assessment” to
identify top priorities.
Example, Walkability as a Goal:
Dimension Perfo...
Here we can see then see how any dimension,
in this case Traffic Safety which came out on
top as a priority, parses out wi...
Identify Priorities
State of Place Index
State of Place Profiles
Scenario Analysis
Run Analytics
Compare Interventions
See Recommendations
Compare Projects
Choose Up To Three Dimensions To Compare
Density
Form
Connectivity
Proximity
Parks & Public Spaces
Recreational Facilities...
Parks &
Public Spaces
$80,000
Pedestrian & Bicyclist
Amenities
Traffic
Safety
Add Park
Add Plaza
New PlazaPark Maintenance...
Com. property tax
For-sale residential
Office rents
Retail rents
Residential rents
Res. property taxes
Vacancy Rates
Retai...
Parks &
Public Spaces
$80,000
Pedestrian & Bicyclist
Amenities
Traffic
Safety
$300,000 $150,000
$1.09/sf $0.89/sf
Park Mai...
Compare Interventions
See Recommendations
Compare Projects
Enter Project Cost Enter Project Cost
Enter Project Information
Neighborhood 1
$1,800,000
Neighborhood 1 Neighborhood 1
Pr...
Com. property tax
For-sale residential
Office rents
Retail rents
Residential rents
Res. property taxes
Vacancy Rates
Retai...
Neighborhood 1
$1,800,000
Neighborhood 1 Neighborhood 1
$2,700,000 $2,300,000
$1.43/sf $0.99/sf
Project 1 Project 2 Projec...
We are doing this currently for one of our
clients who is managing a $30M equity fund
focusing on underserved neighborhood...
We could do the same for this scenario…and
create a data-driven story to make the case for
place…
The good news is that if my hometown,
Meeyamee, finally has begun to figure this out,
so can Oklahoma City, believe me!
TM
mariela@stateofplace.org
www.stateofplace.org
For full demo: bit.ly/DemoSoP
Defining Great Places: Using data-driven storytelling to unlock the power of place
Defining Great Places: Using data-driven storytelling to unlock the power of place
Defining Great Places: Using data-driven storytelling to unlock the power of place
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Defining Great Places: Using data-driven storytelling to unlock the power of place

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What makes for great places? What are the economics of place? And how can we use that data to advance place?

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Defining Great Places: Using data-driven storytelling to unlock the power of place

  1. 1. I have a confession to make. I was asked to come here today because people have come to think of me as the methods girl, a data geek, a methodholic. But actually, I'm a placeoholic Methods, data, definition, rationalism, are just my drugs of choice I use to feed my place addiction I very much embrace the notion that If you cannot measure it, it doesn't exist but not for the sake of measurement itself' but for the sake of changing it for the sake of convincing other people to change it for the sake of communicating the value of urban design But I didn't start out this way. Defining Great Places Using data-driven storytelling to unlock the power of place TM Mariela Alfonzo, Ph.D. Founder, State of Place TM Research Assistant Professor, NYU OU Institute for Quality Communities Placemaking Conference, March 21st, 2015
  2. 2. This is my hometown - westchester meeyame Where my most exhilarating memory is playing an ersatz game of frogger as i tightroped down pencil thin sidewalks dogging cars as I crossed strip-mall lined highways masquerading as streets all to get to a chicken teriyaki sub. Growing up in Miami - especially as a carless teenager sucked.
  3. 3. This was life
  4. 4. This was work
  5. 5. This was play
  6. 6. Caddy corner form another form of play
  7. 7. This was our best hope for place I always say the best place to find Miami's soul is within a tired strip mall along an otherwise placeless artery at the famous Versailles café.
  8. 8. This is the typical scene outside of the Versailles Café window – la ventanita – where all the Cubans gather around talking about their heydays on the island.
  9. 9. I don't blame them, I'd miss this place too. Miamians – Cuban exiles or otherwise – are obviously starving for place; creating it out of whatever they can. But what miami lacked in place, I made up for in passion Ironically, I owe my intimate understanding of the power of place, or lack thereof, to Miami. I desperately wanted to fix Miami, to help create place I thought if you could only convince people, show them the power of place…its value…that things could change. Even then I was convinced better places did better, all around. I just needed to find a way to prove that to people. for a while, I thought I would do that as an architect I had studied psychology as an undergrad but had always been interested in design as a way to create solutions to problems - guess that's what drew me to psychology too but as a grad student in architecture, I was too much of a social scientist. I was less focused on the nuts and bolts of design and more on the question -- how will this make people feel? what has been done in the past that has been successful in producing an emotion, in facilitating a behavior... I left architecture school as I didn't feel I was being trained to answer those questions, those questions that were most important to me. I was so confused. My friends joked with me – well, you could design houses for psychologists or psychoanalyze architects. Yeah, thanks, great help! So needing to make some money, I took a temporary detour, working at a global advertising agency. But my very first day there, I hated it. It was quarter to 5 and no one seemed to be getting ready to go. Um, wait, what? This job is from 9 to 6, not 9 to 5? And effectively, more like 9 to 7 or 8? I don't get to be creative? I don't get to solve problems? 5 minutes into this major life crisis, I typed into Yahoo, as this preceded the Google days, "psychology" and "architecture" and I found a woman who had a Phd in Psychology and a Masters in Architecture. Yes, I wasn't crazy - there are other people out there that want to "fix" places as a vehicle to "fix" people. One year later, I was a first year PhD student at UC Irvine clamoring for research experience.
  10. 10. I began working with a team evaluating the Safe Routes to School program in California. It was in that project that I first dipped my toe into the world of methods. It was the first time that I had heard the term "walkability" and the first time I had thought about health as it related to the power of place. We evaluated 16 schools across the state using an urban design audit tool that measured about 20 built environment features, like sidewalks and road width. But we encountered so many more urban design issues that children were battling with on an everyday basis just to get to school 2 12. Maintenance1 a. Abandoned buildings are absent Y N N/A_________________ b. Seriously run-down buildings, lots are absent Y N N/A_________________ c. Vacant lots are absent Y N N/A_________________ d. Visible graffiti is absent Y N N/A_________________ 13. Type of people1 a. “Undesirable” people are absent Y N N/A_________________ 14. Type of land uses1 a. “Undesirable” land uses are absent Y N N/A _________________ 15. Number of pedestrians a. # of pedestrians on segment (NOT people at home) _________________ D. ACTUAL TRAFFIC SAFETY (observers do 16-20 together) 16. Road capacity a. Number of lanes of traffic (for length of segment) _________________ 17. Street width a. Street width at 1st corner, in feet _________________ 18. Segment length a. Length of segment from one end to the other, in feet _________________ 19. Sidewalk width a. Sidewalk width at 1st corner, in feet _________________ 20. Turning radii a. Turning radii at 1st corner (soft/med/hard) _________________ 21. Intersections a. Number of marked crosswalks originating from segment _______ of ______ b. (If 4 or more lanes of traffic)Traffic signal present* Y N N/A_________________ c. Number of stop signs at intersections for segment _______ of ______ 22. The following traffic calming features are present: a. traffic circles Y N N/A_________________ b. curb bulb-outs Y N N/A_________________ c. speed bumps, humps, or tables Y N N/A_________________ d. cul de sac or street closing Y N N/A_________________ e. median Y N N/A_________________ f. paving treatment at crosswalk Y N N/A_________________ 23. The following urban design features associated with liveliness are present: a. Street trees Y N N/A_________________ b. Mixed land uses Y N N/A_________________ c. Public space Y N N/A _________________ d. Street furniture Y N N/A _________________ _____________________________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________________________ 1 Write explanation for all “No’s” in this question.
  11. 11. Overgrown bushes making an already tiny 3ft sidewalk effectively unusable, forcing kids to walk along the road or do a balancing act on the one-foot wide sidewalk curb
  12. 12. Or in other cases forcing them to step over the barricade that was placed between the sidewalk and the road to purportedly "keep people safe." I realized that this was the early days of measuring urban design – it was 2001 but I knew we were not capturing so much that mattered to our perceptions, safety, behavior... I also began to realize that the whole of urban design was bigger than the sum of its parts. I became obsessed with understanding what influenced people's decisions to walk. I got a lot of personal practice at this, as I didn't have a car for my first two years in SoCal. I have seen it all – well, I thought so until I started working in China – but that’s a whole other talk! I couldn't get out of my own head. every time I took a step, I took copious mental notes about the design features that were influencing me - the setbacks, the height of the buildings, the trees, the views, the colors, the windows, the smells.
  13. 13. I thought about Malibu’s beautiful but sidewalk-less landscapes
  14. 14. I thought about Irvine’s beautiful yet useless sidewalks abutting the uttermost boring of cookie cutter shopping plazas
  15. 15. I thought about the older parts of LA that had great bones but didn’t feel quite safe or inviting as a pedestrian
  16. 16. I thought about the quaint scale of Laguna Beach
  17. 17. I thought about the dynamic nature of the streets of Santa Monica I realized that not everything mattered in the same way at the same time.
  18. 18. THE HIERARCHY OF WALKING NEEDS
  19. 19. I thought about the quaint scale of Laguna Beach
  20. 20. That’s when I wrote the hierarchy of walking needs – my aim was to organize all these different elements of urban design that mattered based on what was most fundamental for a walk to occur, starting with accessibility (having somewhere to walk on and to), perceived safety from crime (not feeling like you were going to be in danger), pedestrian comfort (not feeling like you were going to get run over/feeling like you belonged as a pedestrian), and finally pleasurability (the things that made a walk interesting and enjoyable). I argued that in most cases, you needed to address the most fundamental needs first – think of Irvine, as an example, in which many of the streets were quite aesthetically pleasing, but you had no real reason to walk on them in terms of getting to a destination). THE HIERARCHY OF WALKING NEEDS
  21. 21. My aim was to provide a framework for those studying the links between urban design and physical activity – to encourage people to analyze built environment features as a composite of various urban design dimensions, the way they occurred in real life, instead of just evaluating the impacts of single features, like sidewalks. My goal was to indeed produce a better methodology… I had begun to become the methods girl But it wasn't until the Irvine Minnesota Inventory that I got the opportunity to really geek out. With funding from Robert Wood Johnson Foundation through Active Living Research, we were tasked to establish an objective built environment audit tool that would allow researchers to test the relationship between urban design and health. We visited dozens of neighborhoods. My job was to literally jot down every possible item you could think of that would influence our choices to walk – ironically enough, I had to buy a car to do so! I remember driving through Barstow and thinking, oh, yeah, a jail. That might impact our decision to walk…It didn’t make it to the final version though! Throughout this process, I combed through
  22. 22. The good Dynamic public plazas encased by engaging retail within buildings full of character
  23. 23. Organized chaos, with various forms of mobility living side by side, that prioritized the pedestrian
  24. 24. The importance of lighting The contribution of the whimsical
  25. 25. The delicate balance between the private and the public, the active
  26. 26. and the intimate
  27. 27. The importance of urban parks and providing access to nature
  28. 28. The provision of bicycle infrastructure, How a couple of chairs and tables transform streets into buzzing centers of activity You know those people are having fun and that feeling is infectious – that’s what amazing about just going for a walk in a city filled with places
  29. 29. The juxtaposition of the high brow and the ordinary
  30. 30. The interactive possibility of design And creating true civic places
  31. 31. Offering different opportunities to sit
  32. 32. Rest Linger Watch other people – one of the best things to do in great places
  33. 33. And adapting that to all climates and types of places
  34. 34. And noting the resiliency of the human sprit, even when we are not provided official places to sit, or we are explicitly barred from it
  35. 35. The dynamic effect of food within the urban landscape The colors, the smell, the access
  36. 36. Playing with color and light And understanding nightscapes
  37. 37. Having little nodes of activity and hidden retreats
  38. 38. the desire for personalization
  39. 39. Admiring the so ridiculously quaint I want to hug it facade
  40. 40. appreciating absolutely perfect urban form and scale
  41. 41. And then the bad Encountering so many obstacles along the way
  42. 42. So many times we are told we’re not wanted or not thought of
  43. 43. Or not prioritized
  44. 44. When the sidewalk literally does end…
  45. 45. When there is literally a disconnect
  46. 46. When landscapes are littered with homogenous, never-ending rivers of strip malls
  47. 47. Which force us to drive from one to the other even when they are right across the street from one another
  48. 48. When it’s obvious we are purposely not meant to traverse a place
  49. 49. And finally, the ugly. I think this was the no-turning back point for me. I officially became that girl who could not help but indulge in incessant commentary about the built environment and the public realm every time she stepped foot outside – and mostly framed as what needed to be fixed! I call it advanced people-watching (a al William Whyte); it’s the one key skill I try to impart onto my urban design students. But if you’re not an urbanist…ah, my poor fiancé. Bless his heart. The funniest thing is I’ve caught him now several times starting a sentence with “From an urban design perspective…” Yes! I’ve done my job. We do try to incorporate some non-urban spots when we go on vacation for both our sakes! I have a lot less to say about fields and mountains!
  50. 50. So in the end, we identified 241 items and after reliability testing, 162 ended up in the original IMI. It was GREAT! We had done it. We had measured urban design! BUT We had built a tool for measurements sake. I’ve since fielded dozens of calls from researchers and practitioners asking us how to use this thing – and as the grad student on the project, I was really the only one who knew what to do with it! IRVINE MINNESOTA INVENTORY Date 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Time Observer Segment # Answer questions 1-6 based on this end of the segment Intersection Neighborhood Identification 1. Are there monuments or markers including neighborhood entry signs that indicate that one is entering a special district or area? 1 yes = 1; no = 0 Street Crossing 2a. Consider the places on the segment that are intended for pedestrians to cross the street. Are these places marked for pedestrian crossing? Mark N/A if there are no intended places to cross. 2 all = 2; some = 1; none = 0; NA = 8 2b. What type of marking do the crosswalks have? Mark all that apply. Mark N/A if 2a= 0 or 8 White painted lines 3 yes = 1; no = 0; NA = 8 Colored painted lines 4 yes = 1; no = 0; NA = 8 Zebra striping 5 yes = 1; no = 0; NA = 8 Different road surface or paving (e.g. tiles, colored concrete, marble, etc) 6 yes = 1; no = 0; NA = 8 Other 7 yes = 1; no = 0; NA = 8 3. Are there curb cuts at all places where crossing is expected to occur? Mark N/A if there are no intended places to cross. 8 all = 2; some = 1; none = 0; NA = 8 4. What type of traffic/pedestrian signal(s)/system(s) is/are provided? Mark all that apply. Traffic signal 9 yes = 1; no = 0 Stop sign 10 yes = 1; no = 0 Yield sign 11 yes = 1; no = 0 Pedestrian activated signal 12 yes = 1; no = 0 Pedestrian crossing sign 13 yes = 1; no = 0 Pedestrian overpass/underpass/bridge 14 yes = 1; no = 0 5. For an individual who is on this segment, how safe (traffic wise) do you think it is to cross the street from this segment? 15 pretty/very safe = 1; not very safe/ unsafe = 0; cul de sac = 8 6. For an individual who is on this segment, how convenient (traffic wise) do you think it is to cross the street from this segment? 16 pretty/very convenient =1; not very/inconvenient= 0; cul de sac = 8 Answer questions 7-11 while standing at the beginning of the segment Neighborhood Identification 7. Does the segment have banners that identify the neighborhood? 17 some/a lot = 2; few = 1; none = 0 Street Characteristics 8a. Is this a pedestrianized street? 18 yes = 1; no = 0 8b. Is the street a … 19 one way = 1; two way = 2 9. Is this segment an alley? 20 yes = 1; no = 0 10. How many vehicle lanes are there for cars? (Include turning lanes). 21 six or more = 6; five = 5; four = 4; three = 3; two = 2; one = 1; NA (no lanes for car travel) = 8 Views 11a. Is this segment characterized by having a significant open view of an object or scene that is not on the segment? The view must be a prominent one. 22 yes = 1; no = 0 11b. How attractive is the open view? 23 attractive = 3; neutral = 2; unattractive = 1; NA (no views) = 8 Begin walking along segment to answer questions 12-68 12a. What types of land uses are present on this area? Mark all that apply. Residential Single family home - detached 24 yes = 1; no = 0 Single family home/duplex - attached (2 units or fewer) 25 yes = 1; no = 0 Town home/condo/apartment housing (3 units or more) 26 yes = 1; no = 0 Mobile homes (includes manufactured homes) 27 yes = 1; no = 0 Residential, other 28 yes = 1; no = 0
  51. 51. But even before the ink was dry on the IMI, I met a group of “urban brokers” – renegades – from Houston that wanted to tell the story of place, or lack of thereof in their case. They planned to rank several neighborhoods in Houston based on their sense of place. As the purported methods girl, I asked them how they planned to do that. They had no clue – they were planning to have a group of “experts” subjectively judge these places. Enter light bulb moment – so hey, I have this tool… I was forced to come up with a quick and dirty methodology – the very first version of my State of Place algorithm (which I’ll get to later) – to use the IMI to tell a story about neighborhoods' Sense of Place! We gave each of the 12 neighborhoods grades and everything. In 2005! Now I really thought I had my eureka moment…we thought this would incite these neighborhoods to think about Place, to compete on the basis on Place. But again, this was 10 years ago. Even if we had begun to define the nuts and bolts of great places It couldn’t just be about health. It couldn’t just be about sense of place. I STILL had to show them the money if I wanted them to consider place in the equation. I realized I had to learn a whole new language – and method. The language of real estate economics and finance. I audited a real estate development class, jumped feet first into an intense relationship with the Urban Land Institute, got countless headaches from trying to figure out all of the jargon and oh my God, the acronyms. If you think we urban planners and designers have acronyms. Wow.
  52. 52. As I was slowly absorbing the concepts of mezzanine finance and cap rates, I had one pivotal conversation with one of my many new real estate friends who worked for a large insurance company about how they chose which deals to invest in. He rattled off a whole bunch of jargon but none of them had to do with place. Far from it. They didn’t even know what most of these buildings actually looked like! I was floored. I made it my quest that day to measure the value of urban design – to truly use methods to feed my place addiction – no actually, to convince others they should feed my place addiction.
  53. 53. And then came Brookings! I finally had the opportunity to truly tie built environment features not just to walking, health, sense of place and community, but to economic value. We gathered IMI and real estate data from over 60 neighborhoods in the Washington DC Metro area that were sampled from over 240 neighborhoods along a continuum of walkability, from the auto-dominated exurbs to the highly walkable core. A meta-analyses examining the results of dozens of studies evaluating the relationship between the built environment and walking guided the development of the first official State of Place algorithm – finally! I created a comprehensive index, ranging from 0 to 100, to make sense out of the 162 data points we were gathering with the IMI. I’ll go into that more in just a little bit, but first the real Eureka moment:
  54. 54. Very Low State of Place™ Index Tied to Economic Value 0 - 20 Low Moderate Good Very Good21 - 40 41 - 60 61 - 80 81 - 100 *PREMIUMS FOR EACH LEVEL INCREASE + $9 SF OFFICE RENTS + $7 SF RETAIL RENTS +80% RETAIL REVENUES + $300 UNIT RES. RENT +$81 SF FOR-SALE RES. VALUE
  55. 55. When you aggregate what that means in terms of going from the lowest to the highest level of State of Place, the numbers are quite startling. + $37 sq. ft. Office Rents + $30 sq. ft. Retail Rents +340% Retail Revenues + $1281/Unit Residential Rent +$347 sq. ft. For-sale Residential State of Place™ Index: 90, Very Good State of Place™ Index: 5, Very Low
  56. 56. And all in all, these premiums have serious implications for economic development in terms of retail and property tax bases WASHINGTON, DC
  57. 57. If you were to apply these numbers – in terms of magnitude of impact – relative to Oklahoma City, if it were to move up four levels, it really starts to weave a tale of why place matters. If this slide doesn’t create an objective narrative for the power of place, I’m not sure what else can. OKLAHOMA CITY
  58. 58. And if you extrapolate out what this means in terms of economic development, even when just talking about moving up two State of Place levels, there is considerable unlocked potential throughout this city, at least with respect to value that can be generated from the built environment. + $37 sq. ft. Office Rents + $30 sq. ft. Retail Rents +340% Retail Revenues + $1281/Unit Residential Rent +$347 sq. ft. For-sale Residential State of Place™ Index: 90, Very Good OKLAHOMA CITY
  59. 59. TM
  60. 60. 280+ URBAN DESIGN FEATURES TOUCH, SEE & FEEL WALKABILIT Y FROM ARCADES TO ZEBRA STRIPES
  61. 61. TRAINING VIDEO + INTERACTIVE QUIZ TRAINED COMMUNITY MEMBERS OR STAFF COLLECT DATA MINUTES/B L O C K 10-15 STATE OF PLACE APP SEAMLESSLY TRANSFERS DATA TO SERVERS
  62. 62. 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100% DENSITY FORM CONNECTIVIT Y PROXIMITY PARKS & PUBLIC SPACES RECREATIONAL FACILITIES PEDESTRIAN & BIKE AMENITIES TRAFFIC SAFETY AESTHETICS PERSONAL SAFETY URBAN FABRIC DESTINATIONS HUMAN NEEDS & COMFORT LIVELINESS & UPKEEP STATE OF PLACE™ INDEX & PROFILE
  63. 63. For Density, we are measuring building compactness and height, not so much population density – this is particularly important in terms of making it feasible to have enough destinations to walk to within a reasonable walking distance. It can also influence the scale of city – is it for cars or people? DENSITY Compactness & Height
  64. 64. Related to that is Urban Form. Here we are measuring streetscape continuity, so we take into account building setbacks, how the building meets the street, the siting of buildings, and the number and width of buildings. This is what I like to call the hugability of a street. If the form is off, a street can feel aloof or it can feel suffocating. You know you’ve achieved the right proportions of setbacks, street width, and building height when it feels like the street is hugging you. FORM Streetscape Continuity
  65. 65. CONNECTIVITY Access & Barriers
  66. 66. Proximity refers to the diversity of the land use mix – the number of non-residential land uses there are to walk to. So literally, how many of your daily needs, services, and amenities are present within a certain distance of you PROXIMITY Land Use Mix Photo Credit Nakeva Corothers
  67. 67. With parks and public spaces, we include the presence hard and soft scape public spaces, as well as their quality and accessibility. These are often the soul and life of neighborhoods, they are the city’s living rooms. Along with museums and monuments, these are the places you bring your friends and families to when they come visit. I can tell a lot about a city based on how people use their public spaces. PARKS & PUBLIC SPACES
  68. 68. We also look at recreational facilities – separately. This is getting a bit more at recreational walking, but the literature found this to be an important determinant for physical activity, so we measure the presence of outdoor and indoor physical activity facilities. RECREATIONAL FACILITIES Photo Credit Bill Cotter
  69. 69. Pedestrian and bike amenities refer to aspects of the built environment that make it comfortable or pleasant to be a pedestrian, so sidewalk presence and quality, seating, bike lane presence and type, street trees, etc. Along with form, these are the features that truly help distinguish car-focused neighborhoods from people-first places – they are the things that make you want to linger… PEDESTRIA N & BIKE
  70. 70. Along with that, we look at traffic safety. Here we are mainly focusing on the quality and safety of the intersection as well as the presence of traffic calming features. These include the presence of curbcuts, crosswalk markings, traffic standards, and on-street parking. These are the features that help manage all of the mobile members of the public realm – people, strollers, bicyclists, scooters, cars, and buses. TRAFFIC SAFETY
  71. 71. Aesthetics goes beyond the visually pleasing; it also includes aspects of urban design that make places more dynamic and inviting. We look at the transparency of buildings, colors, outdoor dining, street trees, building maintenance, ground floor uses, etc. This is charm, character, the wow factor – the things you’ll most remember about places. AESTHETIC S Liveliness & maintenance
  72. 72. Finally, personal safety refers not to actual crime data but rather the aspects of the built environment that influence our perception of safety – these are called physical incivilities and include features like graffiti, litter, broken windows, abandoned buildings and lighting. These features actually influence walking rates more than the rates of crime incidents. PERSONAL SAFETY
  73. 73. So what does all of this mean for Oklahoma? How can these methods, this amount of definition, actually be weaved into a data- driven story that will help enhance your State of Place?
  74. 74. When you look at a street like this in Norman, where do you start? How do you convince others to want to start? How can you use methods to feed your place addition?
  75. 75. Identify Priorities State of Place Index State of Place Profiles Scenario Analysis Run Analytics
  76. 76. Platform conducts “multi-criterion assessment” to identify top priorities. Example, Walkability as a Goal: Dimension Performanc e Ranking for Goal (Walkability) Impact* Feasibilit y Communit y Score Density 76.5 9 .432 1 4.3 91.4 Form 65.4 9 .543 1 7.1 169.1 Connectivity 55.8 9 .342 1 6.3 136.0 Proximity 74.3 9 .765 2 9.5 353.9 Parks & Public Spaces 23.5 9 .634 2 7.4 873.0 Recreational Facilities 13.4 9 .548 2 5.7 854.2 Pedestrian Amenities 55.4 9 .813 3 8.6 979.0 Traffic Safety 43.1 9 .745 3 8.8 1144.5 Aesthetics 58.4 9 .436 4 7.5 962.3 Personal Safety 71.3 9 .512 4 9.3 529.0 *Impact scores listed here are for explanatory purposes only; the actual impact scores are proprietary.
  77. 77. Here we can see then see how any dimension, in this case Traffic Safety which came out on top as a priority, parses out within the study area. Traffic Safety Spatial Analysis
  78. 78. Identify Priorities State of Place Index State of Place Profiles Scenario Analysis Run Analytics
  79. 79. Compare Interventions See Recommendations Compare Projects
  80. 80. Choose Up To Three Dimensions To Compare Density Form Connectivity Proximity Parks & Public Spaces Recreational Facilities Pedestrian & Bicyclist Amenities Traffic Safety Aesthetics Personal Safety ✓ ✓ ✓
  81. 81. Parks & Public Spaces $80,000 Pedestrian & Bicyclist Amenities Traffic Safety Add Park Add Plaza New PlazaPark Maintenance Arcades Benches Sidewalk Buffers Street Trees Sidewalk Buffers Crosswalks Curbcuts Midblock Crossing Pedestrian Countdown CurbCuts Enter Project Cost Enter Project Cost Select Interventions
  82. 82. Com. property tax For-sale residential Office rents Retail rents Residential rents Res. property taxes Vacancy Rates Retail Rents Enter Baseline Select Goal Calculate Predicted ROI
  83. 83. Parks & Public Spaces $80,000 Pedestrian & Bicyclist Amenities Traffic Safety $300,000 $150,000 $1.09/sf $0.89/sf Park Maintenance Sidewalk Buffers Curbcuts $1.43/sf Predicted ROI: Retail Rents +4.3% +3.1% +3.7% Impact on State of Place Index
  84. 84. Compare Interventions See Recommendations Compare Projects
  85. 85. Enter Project Cost Enter Project Cost Enter Project Information Neighborhood 1 $1,800,000 Neighborhood 1 Neighborhood 1 Project 1 Project 2 Project 3
  86. 86. Com. property tax For-sale residential Office rents Retail rents Residential rents Res. property taxes Vacancy Rates Retail Rents Enter Baseline Select Goal Calculate Predicted ROI
  87. 87. Neighborhood 1 $1,800,000 Neighborhood 1 Neighborhood 1 $2,700,000 $2,300,000 $1.43/sf $0.99/sf Project 1 Project 2 Project 3 $1.56/sf Predicted ROI: Retail Rents +6.0% +2.0% +11.0% Impact on State of Place Index Map It
  88. 88. We are doing this currently for one of our clients who is managing a $30M equity fund focusing on underserved neighborhoods in Boston. They are using State of Place to help identify which development projects will have the most impact on Place – and ultimately informing which ones they will fund. Predicted ROI Impact of Proposed Projects
  89. 89. We could do the same for this scenario…and create a data-driven story to make the case for place…
  90. 90. The good news is that if my hometown, Meeyamee, finally has begun to figure this out, so can Oklahoma City, believe me!
  91. 91. TM mariela@stateofplace.org www.stateofplace.org For full demo: bit.ly/DemoSoP

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