Car-Free Arizona Suburb Gains Residents

The project, dubbed Culdesac, offers EV rentals, free light rail passes, and other perks instead of private parking.

1 minute read

March 6, 2024, 10:00 AM PST

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

People ride bikes past outdoor restaurant patio with misters in Culdesac car-free development, Tempe, Arizona.

Culdesac / Culdesac

Writing in Fast Company, Adele Peters describes the growth of the Phoenix suburb billed as America’s first built-from-scratch car-free development. Culdesac now has 150 residents, all of whom gave us private cars for the experience.

When tenants at Culdesac need a car for an occasional errand, they can rent an on-site EV for $5 an hour; they also get discounts on Lyft and Waymo and a free all-access light rail pass. A new separated bike lane will soon connect the development to a nearby outdoor mall and a larger bike network; the first 200 residents get a free e-bike when they sign a lease and discounts at the local bike shop.

When complete, Culdesac will have 700 housing units in addition to stores and restaurants. The development also includes features to reduce the heat island effect (no asphalt on the ground) and offers e-bikes so residents can bike in the Southwestern summers.

As Peters points out, “The company plans to later expand to other areas, though the concept may arguably only work in places that already have access to strong public transit.”

Monday, March 4, 2024 in Fast Company

Aerial view of homes on beach in Maui, Hawaii

Hawaii Passes First Legislation Regulating Short-Term Rentals Statewide

The new law will give counties the power to limit number or short-term rentals and convert existing short-term rental units back into long-term residential housing.

May 13, 2024 - USA Today

Google office building in Virginia.

Virginia Data Centers Draining State’s Water Supply

Being the world’s largest data center hub is having a severe impact on local water resources.

May 9, 2024 - Grist

Entrance to a drive-through car wash at night with green 'Enter' sign.

Ohio Towns Move to Ban New Car Washes

City officials in northeast Ohio are putting limits on how many car wash facilities can open in their towns.

May 16, 2024 - News 5 Cleveland

Grand Coulee Dam in Washington state.

Northwest Power Demand Could Surge as Data Centers, Transportation Electrification Ramps Up

New estimates project a steady increase in electricity demand due to population growth, data centers, and the shift to electric power in homes, buildings, and transportation.

May 17 - Governing

Blurred traffic speeding by on freeway with Los Angeles skyline in background.

California Testing Per-Mile Gas Tax Alternatives

A summer pilot program will test the fairness and efficacy of collection mechanisms for mileage-based fee options.

May 17 - Newsweek

Close-up of 'Pay rent' note in red marker on day 1 of monthly calendar.

After Months of Decreases, Rents Nationwide Are Going Up

Average rents rose by $12 around the country so far this year.

May 17 - Smart Cities Dive

News from HUD User

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

Call for Speakers

Mpact Transit + Community

New Updates on PD&R Edge

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

Urban Design for Planners 1: Software Tools

This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.

Planning for Universal Design

Learn the tools for implementing Universal Design in planning regulations.