Apart from transit itself, it takes a constellation of assets like affordable housing, thriving businesses, community space, arts and culture to make a transit neighborhood tick. This year's Rail~Volution conference in Denver, CO, which brings together transit and development practitioners from across the U.S., will highlight what it takes to make TOD inclusive. So that transit neighborhoods benefit all residents, new and old. The photo series below shows some of the facets of LISC's equitable TOD work across the country.
At Avenue Place in the Near Northside neighborhood of Houston, residents have created a compact community within walking distance of the light rail and bus lines. Research has shown that neighborly interaction is higher among people with access to public transit.
Building new transit lines can be disruptive to local businesses, which sometimes can't survive to reap the benefits. LISC Phoenix launched "Activate the Alleyway", an ingenious strategy to turn shop backs into shop fronts during the construction of the light rail on Mesa, Arizona's Main Street. Not a single business shuttered during the three years of construction.
Paseo Verde In North Philadelphia is a prime example of equitable transit-oriented development: attractive, mixed-use buildings, affordable housing, medical offices, recreation space and gardens--all in a LEED-certified infill development on the commuter rail line.
The Little Mekong Night Market in St. Paul is a culmination of Western Avenue's bustling commerce and culture--fueled, in no small part, by the light rail that thread's through the neighborhood.
Sometimes transit-oriented development means bringing the mountain to Mohamed. In Flint, Michigan, for example, LISC helped relocate and expand a farmer's market in an abandoned industrial site adjacent to the city's main bus depot. To get to the market's previous location, most Flint residents without a car would have had to take two buses. Now it's an easy stop for healthy, affordable food, with a range of community services built in.
Teen members of Boston's Project RIGHT (also pictured at top), a LISC partner, have been advocating for inclusive development along Boston’s Fairmount Indigo Line. Nearby, the TOD project Bartlett Station will bring 323 new affordable homes and more than 54,000 square feet of retail and commercial space to historically underinvested Roxbury.