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Study: New York Suburbs Need to Zone for Higher Density Transit Oriented Development

The Regional Plan Association released a new study that recommends steps toward higher density transit oriented development in transit adjacent communities around the New York region. The study also teases a big release coming later this month.
November 14, 2017, 10am PST | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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State Street Station in New Haven, Connecticut.

The Regional Plan Association (RPA) released a new study today that recommends developing areas near transit stations in the suburban communities in the New York region to help alleviate the region's challenges with affordable housing and congestion.

The "Untapped Potential" study offers a blueprint "for improving zoning regulations to allow for multi-family housing around regional rail stations, leveraging this existing infrastructure to develop units at a range of price points without causing more sprawl or strain on existing neighborhoods," according to a press release announcing the new study.

According to the press release, any growth strategy that would target new development near transit stations faces obstacles in the form of low-density zoning in many of the communities located around transit station in the region. "Over 60 percent of municipalities close to regional rail stations have zoning codes which greatly limit as-of-right multi-family housing, and over one-quarter only allow for low-density, single-family development that keeps communities exclusively wealthy and white," states the press release. The report includes several concrete recommendations for local municipalities and suburban communities to pursue.

The new study will inform the forthcoming release of the RPA's Fourth Regional Pan, which is scheduled for release on November 30, 2017.

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Published on Tuesday, November 14, 2017 in Regional Plan Association
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