Elements of a city code for CoolTowns: Retail, civic uses

Continuing our look at what a city code needs to allow CoolTowns, it’s amazing to realize how many uses (retail, civic) are often illegal in a majority of what’s built today. Using the transect image in the blog two days ago, you’ll see what kinds of uses are generally not permitted in ‘T2’ (rural) and ‘T3’ (suburban) zones, or even ‘T4’ (borderline suburban/urban).

No fooling, shops and restaurants aren’t permitted in suburbia!… unless they’re isolated away in a special district (‘SD’) that’s typically accessible only by car. And you wonder why suburbanites are unhealthy. Even in the borderline suburban/urban T4 zone, theaters and museums need exemptions, and hidden parking structures that allow emphasis on pedestrian streets are also not permitted.

The CoolTown ‘sweet spot’ is the T5 zone, with T6 (e.g. Manhattan/Paris) and T4 (e.g. Annapolis) being quite fine as well.

Image from the SmartCode (6.5 mb pdf). Black dots are ‘by right’, clear dots are ‘by exception’.

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