It’s also a defining characteristic of an area’s architecture and culture. Looking at this area, again, you can see nodes and corridors arising from the shapes, not consistent, and lacking in almost any east-west traffic. It also reminds you that the vast majority of the area is housing only, even many of the apartment buildings.
As you can see, there are some flaws to this map – some areas aren’t exactly stuck into boxes and others are claimed by two neighborhoods. Moreover, Tenleytown has, maybe, 100 residents and its borders rest, like the ANCs, along corridors where there is precisely the most activity, along Wisconsin. It also perpetuates the myth that there is a neighborhood called “Wakefield.” The name is a myth created by realtors, and you will not find anyone who actually calls it that, except perhaps some serpent or monster who wishes only to deceive you. . Clearly, it’s totally unsatisfactory. So, based on an informal poll and my own views, I’ve revised it:
One more legal aspect worth mentioning are the Advisory Neighborhood Councils in any given site. There are three ANCs in the subject area, 3E, 3F, and 3G. The division between these three wards is at the park, as seen below.
As you can see, each ANC consists of a handful of single-member Districts, which elect the individual neighborhood councillors. Because of the different densities in the project area, the number of SMDs in an ANC varies, as does the size of the SMD. So, 3F04, which represents a cluster of apartment buildings, is geographically small, while 3F03 is vast because it mostly represents a handful of people, deer, and some of the more intelligent trees.
Two small additions to the analysis of zoning regulation. First are PUDs. PUD stands for Planned-Unit Development. In a PUD, a developer negotiates with community representatives, offering certain amenities to the public in exchange for some reprieve from aspects of Zoning Codes. There are four PUD structures (in red) here: Van Ness Station, the Saratoga, Friendship Center, and Mazza Galerie.
The other major legal framework is the landmarking system. There are a handful of landmarks (red), the Grant Road Historic District (blue), and the not-landmarked-but-sensitive Fort Drive area (yellow). The master plan will have to harmonize with the legal strictures imposed by them.
Bicycling exists in a strange middle-area of the law. A bike is a vehicle in DC, but bikers can ride on the sidewalk and don’t have to register or undergo inspections. Culturally, cyclists travel in a more uncertain space, not all that welcome on the street or the sidewalk. A lack of any particular bicycle infrastructure means that there is no place of positive certainty anywhere near Tenleytown. I have to admit that judging conditions was more difficult here because of the more varying conditions cyclists find themselves subject to.
That’s reflected in the composite above; It’s really gray. And pretty dark.
To look at the way the image was composed follow down below.
I wrote in the last update that any analysis of the spatial relationships of a suburban-style city needs to consider the legal rules and social sentiments that coexist with physical boundaries. Of course the laws vary based on your “mode” of travel, with pedestrians getting a bit of leeway in terms of “travel.”
But let’s do pedestrians. How do they interact with space?
This is what the average street looks like in Tobago. 30 foot setback, grass, buildings.
This is a part of the Nolli Plan. It’s a famous figure-ground drawing of Rome by a man of the same name that makes a visual comparison between structures and open space. There had been many drawings of Rome before, but Nolli’s particular drawing innovates on the others by showing the ground floor interior spaces or courtyards as part of the white space. It revealed columns and arcades, relating architecture to the urban form.