Here is the New Urbanist hype delivered by
the Speaker, Andres Duany, at
the Jan 11th 2003 Workshop (He founded a TranSect) Will New Urbanism work?
"People live in New York City and want to."
Maybe but....The most recent survey of the Public Policy Institute of
California, polled 2,010 residents statewide and asked:-
If you had your choice, would you most prefer to live in a single-family
detached home, an attached home such as a condo or townhouse, an apartment, or
another type of dwelling?
Answer:- 86% single-family detached
8% attached home
San Francisco already has more Suburban Transit Boardings than any other US
City. (Yet boardings declined 7% (90-95) like most other cities did). The city cannot accommodate additional rail-boat commuters from
Sonoma or Marin.
I hope we're not comparing Marin to New York? The entertainment and nightlife is
already provided by many Marin towns. Put together (including more in San
Quentin, SQ,) would not stop travel to San Fran. for SO MUCH more
entertainment.... SQ can never be compared to New York !
"Rail works in NY and
Now there's a statement!!! "Rail Works" the fact is rail has rarely ever "worked" ANYWHERE in this
country. Why ? Because it is horrendously expensive and cannot cater to
the suburbs. People have to drive to stations and would rather drive all the
way. Rail is nowhere near cost effective and certainly DEAD WRONG for Marin. SMART is
over 4 times the person-miles cost of adding a freeway lane on HWY101 from SR to
Cloverdale, 50 miles, (excl the "Narrows").
Rail FOR and
v Freeway ../CarTransit/RailvFreewy.htm
Unless the transit
system becomes a highly elaborate network, it simply cannot get many people from where
they are to the myriad destinations to which they routinely travel.
Rail dreamers can
fantasize about recreating the train-dependent human settlement patterns of the
19th century, but it is absolutely impossible, for this simple reason: they're
not prepared to outlaw the competition, the automobile. So it's the rail partisans' cumbersome,
rigid, enormously expensive, hard-to-get-to technology vs. a nimble, efficient,
affordable, sexy, instantly-available system of transport-the car-that comes
equipped with heat, air conditioning and stereophonic sound. See if you can pick
Central Park is a good example of parks proximate to urban
After dark -you go first. One of the reasons why people moved out of the
cities was fear of inner city violence.
People want to live in suburbia yet say no to more
building around them.
And apartment dwellers don't?
We need better designed Open Space
I want MY open space to be untouched thankyou
Marin does not have a decent waterfront
??? See new San Rafael wetlands bike path and Loch Lomond, China Camp, Tiburon
and Tiburon Peninsula, Sausalito
We need "Squares" "Plazas" and
Any space that is available I'd rather it surrounded my house. If I want to walk
I'd rather do it where there are fewer people and less houses around. If I want
to meet people it would be my friends not strangers or even neighbors on the
"The more highways you build the more congestion
How many times have I heard this one? Go here for the answers:- Induced Traffic Myth and
"Freeway Expansion Works, of course"
Nothing will solve traffic problems except bringing
workplaces closer to living places" says SCAG too (South CA Assoc. Govs.)
No disputing that, but if development was rigorously restricted in relation to
the congestion it causes and to the jobs available we wouldn't have ANY traffic
San Quentin Development will "shorten trips".
Same effect as adding more hwy.
If you can persuade the 39,000 out-of-county workers (most of them commute to
Marin's low paying jobs) to relocate to SQ (and afford the price) then this cd
be true. But the net effect wd be adding more than 7,000 SQ people to the
traffic congestion that already exists.
By the way just 5 miles over the Richmond bridge from SQ are 100,000's of affordable
Make SQ an "Urban Core"
Heres' why we shouldn't
Ecology Group in San Francisco has cool ideas including "Wind Turbines
Wind turbines need huge amounts of wind and are rarely cost effective except in
VERY few really windy areas. Solar PV is the obvious choice.
274 acres can "Accommodate Everything"
And look best with nothing
After the talk by Andres there was little time for
This was followed by a Visualization exercise. We
were all asked to close our eyes and at the vocal guidance of a leader we were
to visualize what we saw as our ideal San Quentin. Then we were to crayon, in
different colors, our vision on a map of SQ. After asking my neighbor what his
purple lines represented and was surprised how I had interpreted them as
representing something different from his intent and after finding out that these maps were to
be collected and used by planning, I suggested that one could
interpret WHATEVER one wanted from these drawings in the absence of a color
legend. See an Aerial View of San Quentin today and a
vision for the Future
A few of us presented our visualizations. I asked
if anyone else had visualized Tiburon.
Then we stuck a green dot and 3 blue dots on pictures of
what we wanted SQ to look like. I stuck my dots on the most "open
space" looking picture I could find. At the end of the day the blue
dots were equally distributed between 3 categories "Open Space" ,
"Transit Hub" and "Affordable Housing".