Many projects under the banners of smart growth or transit oriented development are simply high density or near transit corridors, or they include gratuitous green space and walking paths. However, they fail in many of the finer points of smart growth, new urbanism, or transit oriented development.
According to Wikipedia, smart growth “advocates compact, transit-oriented, walkable, bicycle-friendly land use, including neighborhood schools, complete streets, and mixed-use development with a range of housing choices.” The ”rules” postulated here are meant to supplement rather than reiterate or replace existing Smart Growth or New Urbanism principles. However, there is some overlap both with existing principles and with each other, as smart growth planning is an imperfect “science.”
These rules attempt to look at the finer points, beyond the density of a project or its proximity to transit corridors, so that in 50 years hindsight, smart growth will have a better record than so much of the planned development of the early post war years (including failed redevelopment projects, affordable housing projects, and suburban residential and commercial projects).