These principles provide a blueprint for elected officials to create compact, mixed-use, walkable, transit-oriented developments in their local communities. Cities and counties across the nation have adopted them to break the cycle of sprawl. Since then, the Ahwahnee Principles for Economic Development in , the Ahwahnee Water Principles in and the Ahwahnee Principles for Climate Change in have been developed to complement this pioneering vision. Prosperity in the 21st Century will be based on creating and maintaining a sustainable standard of living and a high quality of life for all. To meet this challenge, a comprehensive new model is emerging which recognizes the economic value of natural and human capital. Embracing economic, social, and environmental responsibility, this approach focuses on the most critical building blocks for success, the community and the region.
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These principles provide a blueprint for elected officials to create compact, mixed-use, walkable, transit-oriented developments in their local communities. Cities and counties across the nation have adopted them to break the cycle of sprawl. Since then, the Ahwahnee Principles for Economic Development in , the Ahwahnee Water Principles in , and the Ahwahnee Principles for Climate Change in have been developed to complement this pioneering vision.
Existing patterns of urban and suburban development seriously impair our quality of life. The symptoms are: more congestion and air pollution resulting from our increased dependence on automobiles, the loss of precious open space, the need for costly improvements to roads and public services, the inequitable distribution of economic resources, and the loss of a sense of community.
By drawing upon the best from the past and the present, we can plan communities that will more successfully serve the needs of those who live and work within them. Such planning should adhere to certain fundamental principles. Ahwahnee Principles for Resource-Efficient Communities.
Preamble Existing patterns of urban and suburban development seriously impair our quality of life. Community Principle All planning should be in the form of complete and integrated communities containing housing, shops, work places, schools, parks and civic facilities essential to the daily life of the residents.
Community size should be designed so that housing, jobs, daily needs and other activities are within easy walking distance of each other. As many activities as possible should be located within easy walking distance of transit stops. A community should contain a diversity of housing types to enable citizens from a wide range of economic levels and age groups to live within its boundaries.
The location and character of the community should be consistent with a larger transit network. The community should have a center focus that combines commercial, civic, cultural and recreational uses. The community should contain an ample supply of specialized open space in the form of squares, greens and parks whose frequent use is encouraged through placement and design.
Public spaces should be designed to encourage the attention and presence of people at all hours of the day and night. Each community or cluster of communities should have a well defined edge, such as agricultural greenbelts or wildlife corridors, permanently protected from development.
Streets, pedestrian paths and bike paths should contribute to a system of fully connected and interesting routes to all destinations. Their design should encourage pedestrian and bicycle use by being small and spatially defined by buildings, trees and lighting; and by discouraging high-speed traffic. Wherever possible, the natural terrain, drainage, and vegetation of the community should be preserved with superior examples contained within parks or greenbelts.
The community design should help conserve resources and minimize waste. Communities should provide for the efficient use of water through the use of natural drainage, drought tolerant landscaping and recycling. The street orientation, the placement of buildings and the use of shading should contribute to the energy efficiency of the community. Regional Principles The regional land use planning structure should be integrated within a larger transportation network built around transit rather than freeways.
Regional institutions and services government, stadiums, museums, etc. Materials and methods of construction should be specific to the region, exhibiting continuity of history and culture and compatibility with the climate to encourage the development of local character and community identity.
Implementation Strategy The general plan should be updated to incorporate the above principles. Rather than allowing developer-initiated, piecemeal development, local governments should take charge of the planning process.
General plans should designate where new growth, infill or redevelopment will be allowed to occur. Prior to any development, a specific plan should be prepared based on the planning principles. With the adoption of specific plans, complying projects could proceed with minimal delay.
Plans should be developed through an open process and participants in the process should be provided visual models of all planning proposals.
Magazine article American Forests. Urban sprawl seriously impairs our quality of life, but by drawing from the past and the present, communities can more successfully serve those who live and work within them. In California's Local Government Commission asked six nationally recognized architects to create an alternative to urban sprawl. The Principles below were presented to mayors, city councilmembers, and country supervisors at the Ahwhanee Hotel in Yosemite. Today over cities and 18 counties in California alone have incorporated all or some of these principles in their general plans, and the reception nationally has been highly positive. Housing, jobs, daily needs, and other activities within easy walking distance and close to transit stops. A well-defined edge, such as agricultural greenbelts or wildlife corridors, permanently protected from development.
The Ahwahnee Principles
Ahwahnee Principles for Resource-Efficient Communities
The Ahwahnee Principles are a set of guidelines that emphasize sustainable urban planning practices. These principles have developed alongside the New Urbanism movement,  which incorporates mixed-use , walk-able, compact, and transit-oriented elements in community planning. The following principles, also noted as the Ahwahnee Principles for Resource-Efficient Communities were made by the Local Government Commission in From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Community principles [ edit ] The following principles, also noted as the Ahwahnee Principles for Resource-Efficient Communities were made by the Local Government Commission in All Planning should be in the form of complete and integrated communities containing housing, shops, work places, schools, parks and civic facilities essential to the daily life of the resident.