Journal of Public Transportation Article in Volume 2, Issue 3 (1999) by Lawrence D Frank, Georgia Institute of Technology, Mollie Stephenson Smith, CRA Associated, Inc., Eleanor Q Matthews, MARKETEK, Inc.
This article assesses the land-use, demographic, circulation, and economic development attributes of transit station area development. Findings from this assessment are applied to the Lindbergh Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) Station area in Atlanta, Georgia, for which a private-public partnership is currently being negotiated. Recommendations for the redevelopment of the Lindbergh Station area are provided, including a schematic design that integrates those recommendations. The resulting recommendations are intended to maximize the likelihood for transit ridership and economic benefit while offsetting traffic congestion and vehicle emissions–in keeping with the objectives of the Federal Transit Administration’s Livable Communities Initiative. A safe and inviting walking environment throughout a station area–extending well beyond the area of physical redevelopment itself–is fundamental to achieving these objectives. Existing barrier effects and lack of pedestrian connectivity associated with major transportation corridors within the Lindbergh Station area will significantly offset transportation and environmental benefits on which public investment in the redevelopment is predicated. Solutions are required that provide not only safer street crossings, but a larger proportion of rights-of-way devoted to pedestrian movement and the development of a “street life.” Priority should be given to pedestrian improvements that increase access to transit for traditionally underserved populations. Finally, open space is required to effectively compete with other more auto-dependent areas and to draw higher income populations to transit station areas.