Our Recipe for Active Streets: A Collaborative Workshop

Session 5A | Thursday | 9:00 – 10:15 AM PT

About the Session

What are the key ingredients are needed to activate streets? How can we use parts of the public right of way to build community and a sense of place? This session takes inspiration from William Whyte's Recipe for Good Public Spaces to bridge the gap between public space and streetscape, learning from the Street Activation work in multiple cities in Washington. Two urban planners from a city in North Central Washington and Toole Design Group will present their key learnings from the ongoing project New Public Space Typologies and Activation Strategies about how urban planners and built environment professionals can activate streets, including innovative policy and legislative approaches and practical design considerations. They will outline their key policy and design "ingredients". Then, participants will be invited to share their key ingredients for street activation, and finally, the group will consolidate the list and vote on their top choices. Participants will leave the session with a collaborative recipe for street activation that can be used in their practice.

About the Moderator

Kristen Lohse, ASLA
Toole Design

Kristen has worked engaged in multimodal planning and design for over twenty years. Her education in landscape architecture enables her to move effortlessly between conceptual thinking, site planning, and detailed design, and to communicate ideas visually. She has worked on a wide variety of cross-cutting public realm projects, developing expertise in shared-use trails, wayfinding, Complete Streets, and universal design guidance. She is a co-author of Accessible Shared Streets: Notable Practices and Considerations for Accommodating Pedestrians with Vision Disabilities (FHWA). She is currently leading the City of Edmonds’ streets and public spaces typology project, Reimagining Streets + Neighborhoods.

About the Speakers

Sofia Gulaid
Toole Design Group

Sofia is a planner and interdisciplinary designer with experience in public space design, community engagement, and public art. She is passionate about facilitating positive experiences for diverse people moving through cities and works at Toole Design Group in Seattle on active transportation planning including pedestrian planning, wayfinding, and multi-use trails. She is Kenyan-American and previously worked in refugee services and civic tech in Nairobi. Sofia holds a Master in City Planning from MIT and Certificate in Urban Design and a Bachelor of Art in Environmental Studies from Yale University.

About the Speakers
Susan McLaughlin

Director of Planning & Development 

Susan is currently the Director of Planning & Development for the City of Edmonds, WA. Her department is responsible for current and long-range planning, building, and code enforcement. She collaborates with Public Works on a variety of street concepts, design standards, and capital project implementation. One key project that has captured attention in Edmonds is called Reimagining Neighborhoods & Streets and includes a package of new street and public space typologies as well as a public space activation toolkit.

Prior to this position, she served as the Urban Design Manager for the Seattle Department Transportation for over 9 years. She was responsible for managing the Seattle Complete Streets program, developing their street design manual-Streets Illustrated, establishing an adaptive streets program, and spearheading a new public life program that uses observational data to inform public realm investments. McLaughlin holds a masters in urban development and design from the University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia, and a bachelor of arts in environmental studies with an urban planning emphasis from UC, Santa Barbara.

She has more than 20 years of experience in land use, transportation, and public realm design, and played a key role in developing the Central City Rebuild Plan in Christchurch, New Zealand after the devastating 2010/2011 earthquakes. Prior to working in New Zealand, McLaughlin spent more than 10 years working in the public and private sector of land use planning in Santa Barbara, California.


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