Would you like to tell us about a lower price? If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support? Nearly every US city would like to be more walkable-for reasons of health, wealth, and the environment-yet few are taking the proper steps to get there. The goals are often clear, but the path is seldom easy. Jeff Speck's follow up to his bestselling Walkable City is the resource that cities and citizens need to usher in an era of renewed street life. Walkable City Rules is a doer's guide to making change in cities, and making it now.
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Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Other editions. Enlarge cover. Error rating book. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Preview — Walkable City by Jeff Speck. Jeff Speck has dedicated his career to determining what makes cities thrive.
And he has boiled it down to one key factor: walkability. The very idea of a modern metropolis evokes visions of bustling sidewalks, vital mass transit, and a vibrant, pedestrian-friendly urban core.
But in the typical American city, the car is still king, and downtown is a place that's easy to d Jeff Speck has dedicated his career to determining what makes cities thrive. But in the typical American city, the car is still king, and downtown is a place that's easy to drive to but often not worth arriving at. Making walkability happen is relatively easy and cheap; seeing exactly what needs to be done is the trick. In this essential new book, Speck reveals the invisible workings of the city, how simple decisions have cascading effects, and how we can all make the right choices for our communities.
Bursting with sharp observations and real-world examples, giving key insight into what urban planners actually do and how places can and do change, Walkable City lays out a practical, necessary, and eminently achievable vision of how to make our normal American cities great again.
Get A Copy. Hardcover , pages. More Details Original Title. Green Prize for Sustainable Literature. Other Editions 9.
Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Walkable City , please sign up. Is this book going to just be preaching to the choir for me, or will I learn enough to make it worth reading?
William Cline Speck has some opinions that surprised me — for instance, he's against replacing curb parking with bike lanes, because he thinks parked cars make pede …more Speck has some opinions that surprised me — for instance, he's against replacing curb parking with bike lanes, because he thinks parked cars make pedestrians feel safe from moving traffic — but my guess is that you won't learn much.
The book's "ten steps" of walkability will probably all sound familiar to you, and none of them are really covered in depth. The chapter on parking policy, for instance, is just a lightweight summary of Donald Shoup's "The High Cost of Free Parking", and Speck's ideas for managing motorist behavior echo Tom Vanderbilt's "Traffic". You might be interested in his chapter on shaping public spaces, but even there the treatment is fairly superficial. I found it mainly a rant against the monumental buildings of "starchitects".
Does this book highlight or list the most ideal examples? I am interested in discovering some lesser-known, smaller cities that fit the bill.
William Cline Speck uses anecdotes from specific cities to illustrate bits and pieces of his recommendations e. See all 3 questions about Walkable City…. Lists with This Book. Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 4. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. This was fascinating. I wish I could talk about it with someone, but I'm pretty sure most people's eyes would glaze over if I started going on about public transit, bike lanes, and the amazing world of parking-meter policy. Their loss!
Walkable City should be required reading for holders of public office, city planners, architects, civic engineers, environmentalists, local business owners, people who work in public health and safety, people who work in economic development, and really anyone who This was fascinating.
Walkable City should be required reading for holders of public office, city planners, architects, civic engineers, environmentalists, local business owners, people who work in public health and safety, people who work in economic development, and really anyone who wants to understand how we can stop depending so much on cars and turn our cities into vibrant, thriving, enjoyable places to live and work.
I currently live in a walkable urban environment but come from an unwalkable hometown, and this book has changed the way I look at just about everything. What most surprised me about this book, though, is how entertaining it is.
Once I got into it, I hated to stop reading and couldn't wait to get back to it. It was almost like it was the latest Dan Brown thriller, except that unlike a Dan Brown thriller, this book was actually good.
And important. I can't stress enough how important it is. In fact, while I did have a few minor quibbles with the way Speck made some of his arguments, I've decided not to describe them here--this book is so important that I don't want to do anything to discourage anyone from reading it.
I will say, though, that I wish he had provided some practical advice at the end for the layperson. His plan has a lot of moving parts. How do we, as the citizens of a town or city that could use some of what this book is prescribing, actually go about convincing our public officials to implement these steps? Still and all, though, this was a great and important, did I mention important? I won this through Goodreads First Reads and am very glad I did, and I sincerely hope this book and its ideas find the audience they deserve, for all of our sakes.
View all 5 comments. Jun 16, Lilia Ford rated it it was amazing Shelves: non-fiction-urban-planning. Must read for anyone interested in healthy cities. Very easy to read for non-specialists, but does not feel superficial or dumbed down either. Favorite part was the chapters on parking. View 2 comments. Jan 02, Keith Swenson rated it really liked it.
Surprising amount of information on why our cities are formed the way they are, the forces that keep them that way, and some suggestions on how to change that. We all love walkable cities, don't we?
Those quaint old-towns of Europe. San Francisco. Castro street in Mountain View. Lincoln Street in San Jose. I will never forget the two years I spent in Munich and how that contrasts with the rest of my life in the southwest. We all know it is the car that shapes our cities into sprawling Surprising amount of information on why our cities are formed the way they are, the forces that keep them that way, and some suggestions on how to change that.
We all know it is the car that shapes our cities into sprawling suburbs which are too sparsely populated to be walkable. Speck starts the book with 65 pages on why walking and bike riding is a good idea: for health reasons, diabetes, the environment, safety. I suppose he had to start making a strong justification, but if you already know you would like a walkable city, you could probably skip section 1 and move right on to section 2. The heart of the book is the ten steps to walkability, and he devotes a well written chapter to each.
The ONLY report universally requested for any city planning is a "traffic study. Everyone hates sitting in a traffic jam; there is only one dominant agenda: try to prevent all traffic jams. Walkability studies, and "pleasant surroundings" studies are all too absent -- we collectively seem to forget about those.
Speck introduces the principle of "Induced Demand" -- the idea that if you build a bigger road, then more people get cars, and the roads remain just as full. Bigger highways mean more traffic. What is not obvious, is the converse: remove the highway and congestion gets lower. He has a number of examples where highways have been removed, and the result is a much nicer environment. He even has some evidence that roads narrowed from 3 lanes to 2 lanes actually still carry the same amount of traffic.
I am skeptical of this, however I do recognize that complex systems behave in non-intuitive ways, and his argument aligns with the idea that traffic engineers make much too many simplifying assumptions treating a city like a simple machine instead of a complex system.
He highlights the important battle between state traffic engineers for highways, and little towns that the highway goes through. The state always requires widening - which is precisely what kills the walkability of the town. Part of the evil is wide streets themselves: make a street narrower, people drive slower, pedestrians are safer, and everyone enjoys the area more.
All of this is designed to cut down on unnecessary traffic, and he ends suggesting that congestion pricing charging people to drive in congested areas or times of day is a smart answer and worked well for London.
Allow "granny cottages" which are small residences mixed in with the suburban single-family monotony. It is critical that low-income and high-income be mixed. Parking places cost tens of thousands of dollars each, and we all demand that they be provided such that usage is free. If something is free, it is used up quickly.
10 Techniques for Making Cities More Walkable
Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Other editions. Enlarge cover. Error rating book.
Connecting decision makers to a dynamic network of information, people and ideas, Bloomberg quickly and accurately delivers business and financial information, news and insight around the world. Put cars in their place. Jeff believes, and I tend to agree, that a car-first approach has hurt American cities. This is in part because traffic engineers too often have failed to acknowledge that increased roadway traffic capacity can lead to more, not fewer, cars on the road. The resulting phenomenon of "induced demand" results in unanticipated consequences not only for traffic on freeways but especially in neighborhoods and downtowns, where streets are sometimes treated not as critical public spaces for animating city life but as conveyances for motor vehicles. Jeff generally supports congestion pricing, but cautions that we must be very careful about assuming the merits of pedestrian-only zones.