Landscape Architect & Specifier News

AUG 2018

LASN is a photographically oriented, professional journal featuring topics of concern and state-of-the-art projects designed or influenced by registered Landscape Architects.

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60 Landscape Architect and Specifier News This eliminates the need for street parking or cramped parking lots between buildings in cities. Therefore, areas originally designated for street parking could be used to create wider pedestrian areas or adapted into valet-style areas for passenger drop off and pick up. Small parking lots that are squeezed into alleyways or spaces between businesses could be transformed into public seating areas or plots for street cafes, again focusing on the human aspect of downtown streets. Bicyclists would have to be taken into account while designing these future streets. Because humans will still control bikes, they would not be able to communicate with vehicles around them, making it impossible for bicyclists to follow the same standard of simultaneous acceleration or instant deceleration in order to avoid a collision. Therefore, NACTO suggests designing downtown streets with fully separate zones for bicycles, protecting them from becoming entangled with the driverless cars. Conclusion Adaptation of streetscape design to fit autonomous vehicles should begin immediately, as technological advancement in the automotive industry is steadily progressing. City planners should keep these ideas in mind for when autonomous vehicles become more accepted into everyday society. Already Amazon is using a combination of driverless cars and drones to deliver packages to people's doors. Likely in the next ten or twenty years, the majority of commuters will make their ways to work in some type of autonomous vehicle, and street design can shift to reflect that change. Above: Wider sidewalks could serve different purposes at different times of day. In this rendering, during the afternoon, half of the sidewalk is devoted to a farmers or vendors market, with food trucks parked on the walkway. However, there is still plenty of space devoted specifically to pedestrians walking by. This design could give a community the opportunity to hold events without completely blocking all traffic from the street, as is traditionally seen with street markets and other similar festivities. PHOTO: NACTO BLUEPRINT FOR AUTONOMOUS URBANISM Top: Autonomous cars are designed to contain sensors that allow the vehicle to receive information from the objects around it and adjust its speed and distance from those objects for safety purposes. When around other self-driving cars, these sensors can communicate, allowing one vehicle to respond to information received from another.

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