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Impacts of New Mobility (Uber, Scooters, etc) on Building Design

  • 1.  Impacts of New Mobility (Uber, Scooters, etc) on Building Design

    Posted 10-25-2019 17:32

    I run the Urbanism Next Center at the University of Oregon (Urbanism Next) where we look at the impacts of emerging technology --- Autonomous vehicles, new mobility, e-commerce --- on cities and communities.

    In the work we have been doing, we see a lot of engagement from planners and developers, but much less from designers.  Wanted to reach out to this network to hear people who are doing projects and/or research on this topic.  Some examples of what I am thinking of are:

    - How is reduced parking needs (due to Uber/Lyft and eventually AVs) impacting building and site design? Are you incorporating this into phased projects?
    - How is e-commerce impacting building design - particularly organization of ground floors?
    - How is e-commerce impacting amount of retail that is going into projects?
    - How is pick-up and drop-off (for Uber/Lyft) impacting project design?

    Would love to hear from members of this community.

    Best,
    -Nico



    ------------------------------
    Nicolas Larco AIA
    nlarco@uoregon.edu
    Professor
    Director - Urbanism Next Center
    University of Oregon
    Portland OR
    http://urbanismnext.com
    ------------------------------
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  • 2.  RE: Impacts of New Mobility (Uber, Scooters, etc) on Building Design

    Posted 10-29-2019 08:49
    Hi Nico - these are great questions and in some cases they are very much changing how we design, speaking as my offices restaurant lead the emergence of programs like UberEats and DoorDash have certainly affected everything from layout of the space to how we think about ordering new establishments, especially QSR's.  These "deliver-anything" services have restaurants competing against peoples living rooms, why would someone go out to get food when they can have the same meal in the comfort of their home?  This has really put pressure on restaurants, especially restaurants that rely on dine-in customers to really dial up the experience - to make not just the food something people want but also the experience which is great for designers.  At the same time, QSR are now designing spaces to stage large orders for the drivers and even secondary entries and pick-up spaces, establishing a whole new work/order/pickup flows.

    I know that isn't what you asked exactly, so here are some answers for your specific questions:
    • How is reduced parking needs (due to Uber/Lyft and eventually AVs) impacting building and site design? Are you incorporating this into phased projects?
      • Like most things, the building/planing/zoning codes have not caught up yet, so in most cases the parking requirements are remaining the same for us with the exceptions of a few progressive jurisdictions.  We look at both these delivery and ride sharing services as an additional thing to accommodate through a combination or strategically placed drop-off or short term parking that makes sense with the larger site/building flows.
    • How is e-commerce impacting building design - particularly organization of ground floors?
      • Similar to the last response for the delivery services we are thinking about additional flows and additional order quantities that typically need to be batch produced.  This is adding additional demands on both the front and back of house, be adding areas for online pickup, delivery service pickup, and traditional order counters of differing types.  This is a lot on new types of navigation for the incoming customer really making them rely on way-finding and start planning to make the experience easy and intuitive. 
    • How is e-commerce impacting amount of retail that is going into projects?
      • Speaking for the large retail group we have in our office this has been a huge change as people are now coming to stores more for an experience or to try products and less for the purchase.  The model being perfected by companies like B8ta is the model a lot of the larger chains like Best Buy are adopting where they are the places where you can try and also interface with experts on the products you are trying, the showroom model.  The other approach is experience, how do you create a experience that is SO unique people just have to come to your store?  I think about the Bodega locations where you have these speakeasy type store hidden behind fake fronts  (Boston a Bodega and LA a produce warehouse) creating a sense of something special.  The other form the experience has been taking is entrainment, how can a store entertain you? whether it is a DJ, some sort of act, or something completely theatrical like what CONCEPTS is doing with shoes.
    • How is pick-up and drop-off (for Uber/Lyft) impacting project design?
      • Covered above but really at this point it is just considering it in the design to allow for the easy drop-off/pick-up
    I hope this helps!!

    Zachary Smith, AIA
    Associate | Senior Architect
    Bergmeyer
    Boston | Los Angeles
    51 Sleeper Street, Boston, MA 02210
    617.542.1025 office
    617.695.7718 direct
    www.bergmeyer.com


    ------------------------------
    Zachary Smith AIA
    Senior Project Manager / Architect
    Bergmeyer Associates, Inc.
    Lee NH
    ------------------------------

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  • 3.  RE: Impacts of New Mobility (Uber, Scooters, etc) on Building Design

    Posted 10-31-2019 03:46

     

     

     

    Zachary,

     

    This is a great list!  Resonates with some of the work we have been doing at Urbanism Next, but also adds a few new ideas as well.  Thank you for posting.


    And, given some of the responses I have gotten from this original post, I will put up another post in just a moment about the Urbanism Next Conference (https://www.urbanismnext.com/overview-conference) -- -would be great to have you submit a session about this topic.  We need more designers to be engaging in this!

     

    Best,

    -Nico

     

     

    Save the date! 

    National Urbanism Next Conference - May 13-15, 2020

     

    Website:

    Urbanism Next Center

     

    Blog:

    Urbanism Next – How technology is shaping our cities

     

    ________________________________________________________________

    Nico Larco, AIA
    Professor – Department of Architecture 

    Director – Urbanism Next Center
    Co-Director – Sustainable Cities Institute (SCI)
    University of Oregon

     
    nlarco@uoregon.edu">nlarco@uoregon.edu 
    503.412.3732

    @nicolarco /@urbanismnext

     

     

     




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