Every city has its own topography and ambiance and there are rules of thumb to keep in mind when reviving neighborhoods and approving projects here in Petaluma.
REIN IN THE AUTOMOBILE: For 50 years we completely obsessed with making room for cars. We need to show respect for people who are moving about on foot or by bicycle.
ACCENTUATE THE POSITIVE: Celebrate the things that give our city its special characteristics- views of hills or water, historic buildings. If it’s nice for the locals then visitors will love to come here also.
EMPHASIZE THE OUT-OF-DOORS: We do almost all of our work indoors; we need to move in our leisure time. People want to walk, run, bicycle- or sit and enjoy the setting, have a cappuccino.
DESIGN FOR ALL AGES: Various groups in the population have various needs. For instance, fold active playgrounds into a site plan and position them where parents can relax with a glass of wine while children let off steam.
(Excerpted from “Life Between Buildings” by Jan Gehl)