Specific Strategies for Transit-Oriented Development: Applying National Lessons to the Twin Cities - Phase 2


Andrew Guthrie, Yingling Fan

November 2017

Report no. CTS 17-09

Transit-oriented development - or TOD - is a widely desired public good faced with a serious dilemma: in current policy and fiscal environments, the governments and public agencies that most strongly desire TOD have little ability to implement it by their own actions. Conversely, the private and non-profit sector entities whose actions are needed to implement TOD may not share a city's or regional planning body's goals for transit-oriented growth patterns and built forms. The fundamental mismatch of intentions between those charged with advancing TOD and those with the power to accomplish it demands creativity from planners and regional policymakers. This report examines TOD promotion programs through direct engagement with senior- and executive-level staff at the agencies and organizations responsible for them. Through a series of in-depth interviews, our research team assessed program goals, structures and outcomes, focusing on participants' shared understandings of TOD in their regions, their agencies'/programs' roles in and goals for promoting TOD, other stakeholders' responses to their efforts and the results they see as attributable to their programs. Overall, implementing TOD at a regional scale is a complex process, almost invariably involving coordinating between multiple agencies and levels of government, as well as between the public, non-profit and private sectors. This situation makes it critical to have reliable points of contact between stakeholders in the TOD promotion process, and to establish a group of interested parties who continue dialogue and mutual coordination as the process of implementing TOD in the region goes forward.

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Hennepin County