Buffalo Development Will Feature the City's First Mobility Hub

The project, which is located near light rail and bus stations, will also include a ride hailing zone, bike parking, and improved pedestrian facilities.

July 23, 2021, 5:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

A new housing development in Buffalo will be home to the city's first "mobility hub," designed "to encourage people to walk, bike, take public transit, carshare or any other form of eco-friendly transportation," reports Emily Nanko. "[I]n 2017, Buffalo became the first U.S. city to stop requiring development projects to include a minimum amount of parking. The zoning change also required a 'transportation demand management plan' for new developments over 5,000 square feet."

"A mobility hub made sense not just because residents wanted to prioritize it, but because of the site’s proximity to multiple bus lines and two light rail stations," writes Nanko. "The building design even reflects the needs of the mobility hub. The city expanded the surrounding sidewalks to be more pedestrian friendly and accommodate a 'pull up zone' for ride hailing services. Inside the building there will be secure, long term bicycle parking as well as a fix-it station."

The zoning change seems to have had a significant impact on how developers design their buildings. "A 2021 study analyzing the impact of Buffalo’s 2017 zoning change found that mixed-use developers 'readily took advantage of the newfound possibility to include less off-street parking.' The 14 mixed-use projects tracked provided 53 percent less parking than previously required. Four projects built no parking at all."

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