CORAL GABLES CHARRETTE: OVERVIEW
To a large degree, this transformation into an urban center has benefited the City’s residents. The City’s downtown provides its residents with workplaces close to home, good food and cultural activities that were not availabe 10 or 15 years ago. There is even a growing down- town residential population. However, there are some losses too: an incomplete retail picture, difficulty in parking, increasing traffic and new buildings that are often not as beautiful as the old.
A broad base of charrette attendees observed that the downtown is missing convenient and entertaining walkability. A grid of streets and blocks interconnect the Downtown, but many sidewalks are hot, unshaded and unprotected from the rain. Block dimensions are too long to make walking across town convenient. Building frontages are discontinuous and of varying quality; and the relationship of parking to destination is often unclear.