Nation's First 'Zero-Driving Community' Takes Shape in Tempe

Slated to open in 2022, Culdesac Tempe contractually forbids personal vehicles from parking within a quarter-mile radius of the project site.

1 minute read

September 19, 2021, 9:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction


"[B]illed as the first and only zero-driving community built from scratch in the U.S.," Culdesac Tempe encourages its future residents to "rely on other modes, including a bundle of discounted mobility services provided for in their monthly rent, according to project leaders."

According to Laura Bliss, "[t]he $170 million residential development will feature a plaza with scooter docks, car-share parking, and ride-hail pickup zones, with a light rail station across the street." Tenant benefits will include "complimentary access to a Lyft Pink subscription, preferred pricing for a fleet of Bird scooters, an Envoy car share membership, and free unlimited passes on the Valley Metro transit system."

Lavanya Sunder, general manager at Culdesac Tempe, "said this marks one of the first times a U.S. real estate developer has included paid transportation options as part of the monthly rent, which starts at $1,090 for a studio and $1,250 for a one-bedroom." In addition to 761 apartments, the complex will house "a grocery store, restaurant, cafe and co-working space, carving out a pocket of walkable, car-free living into a corner of one of America’s most autocentric metropolises."

The project promises to be an instructive experiment in "retrofitting suburban sprawl for a post-car era" as critics question "if its residents will struggle to access the larger Phoenix area without their own cars."

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