Great Corridors – Great Communities

This booklet by Public Spaces focuses on corridors as multi-modal transport networks. It discusses the benefits of corridors for communities as well as points to tools and strategies to develop and manage these corridors. These tools and strategies are based on lessons from eight best practice examples from across the United States.

Date added 5 November 2021
Last updated 5 November 2021

*This resource is about transportation planning. It is not specifically about the High Street, but has been included in response to requests for more studies/information about this topic, as well as linking to accessibility, adaptability and liveable priorities for High Street vitality and viability*.

This booklet by Public Spaces focuses on corridors as multi-modal transport networks. It starts off by discussing the benefits of corridors for communities, arguing that adapted to a local context, corridors can enable more convenient access to destinations. By prioritising this level of convenience, the report gives new insight about how to plan transportation networks and land uses (p. 5):

  • Transportation benefits our sense of place
  • Our sense of place benefits transportation
  • A place-based approach to transportation redefines how both transportation and land use planners view their goals

The booklet defines corridors as:

“…a multi-modal transportation network, knit together around a major transportation facility, such as a road or rail line.” (p. 6)

The underpinning research for the booklet found that the most successful corridors demonstrated certain and distinct attributes (p. 6 – 7):

  • They promote communities’ long-term goals
  • They offer a variety of land uses
  • They offer a diverse and connected network of transportation choices.
  • They provide community destinations
  • They incorporate the vision of communities

The booklet then proceeds to showcase eight of the best practice examples identified throughout the research on which it bases recommendations for tools and strategies to develop and manage these corridors.

  1. New Hampshire; where active local participation was key to success
  2. Trenton, New Jersey; where projects were planned and managed with the community in mind
  3. Warren County, New Jersey; where transportation was improved by not widening a highway
  4. El Camino Real, California; where cooperation helped revitalise communities
  5. Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania; where paying attention to context made all the difference
  6. Arlington County, Virginia; where vigilant management was key to a successful corridor
  7. Ocean County, New Jersey; where integrating land use and transportation planning revitalised communities
  8. Flemington, New Jersey; where a better kind of bypass served both travellers and towns

The booklet concludes with highlighting the key principles for successful transportation projects:

  • Involve stakeholders early and provide them with meaningful roles
  • Work with developers
  • Build transportation infrastructure incrementally
  • Encourage leadership to constantly and consistently articulate the vision of this new approach to transportation
  • Create and execute a communications strategy
  • Evaluate outcomes in terms of initially articulated goals
  • Continue corridor management