The Cup-of-Coffee Test

What makes effective transit-oriented development? Transportation planner Alan Huynh makes a good argument for the proximity to a cup of coffee as a defining characteristic of quality TOD.

Huynh says that no matter how much attention and dollars planners and developers pour into projects, the truth is that "People define the TOD. People have always given a meaning to things."

And the reason why many TODs don't work, says Huynh, is the lack of agreement on how to measure success. His recommendation? The coffee test.

"Coffee shops are a good measure of how walkable an area is mainly because everyone walks to get their coffee. Starbucks has intrinsic data measuring the effectiveness of the walk-in coffee v. the drive through coffee shop, and has created many more walk-in coffee stores rather than the drive through coffee shops. By measuring the walking distance and time that exists between the closest coffee shop and station site, we can measure the walkability of the station."

Thanks to The Source

Full Story: ReThinking TOD: The Transportation Planner's Dilemma to Transit Oriented Development

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