Building Towns along Railway Lines

denverunionstaition.jpg When the suburbs were invented, from Olmstead's Riverside to Howard's Garden Cities and their successors, they clustered around rail lines; that is how people got around. Then the automobile gave developers the freedom to build anywhere and the tight, walkable suburbs where you could walk to the train station were no longer built, and across North America rail lines that could be used by commuters were torn up.

This is changing; in Denver, a new, dense community is being built in Englewood, a rundown suburb, "one of a growing number of developments offering a mix of uses that have emerged around mass-transit rail lines, a trend that is particularly notable in the car-friendly West. In Dallas, Mockingbird Station on the city's light-rail system boasts an artsy Angelika Film Center, loft apartments that utilize a 1940s warehouse, and retail and office space. And the Del Mar stop in Pasadena, Calif., along Los Angeles's light rail includes 347 apartments stacked over ground floors intended for shops that will give the project a dense, urban feel amid its low-rise Southern California surroundings when it is completed early next year." We need more of this- the railway can't work without density, and the density won't happen without rails. Read more in the ::Wall Street Journal

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