Course Introduction: Main Street Sites and Issues

Urban Neighborhood Decline: Causes, Consequences, Challenges

National Trust for Historic Preservation. Revitalizing Urban Main Streets. Washington, DC: National Trust Main Street Center.

Seidman, Karl F. Wanted: Solutions for America. Final Research Report, Boston Main Streets Program. Washington, DC: Center for Urban Policy Research (PDF), 2003, pp. 3-21.

Zielenbach, Sean. The Art of Revitalization. New York, NY: Garland Publishing, 2000, chapter 5, pp. 133-174. ISBN: 0815335989.

Keating, W. Dennis, and Janet Smith. “Neighborhoods in Transition.” In Revitalizing Urban Neighborhoods. Edited by W. Dennis Keating, Norman Krumholz, and Philip Star. Lawrence, KS: University Press of Kansas, 1996, chapter 2, pp. 24-38. ISBN: 0700607897.

Barnett, Jonathan. “How the Metropolis Split Apart.” Chapter 5 in The Fractured Metropolis. New York, NY: Westview Press (Icon Editions), 1996, pp. 95-118. ISBN: 0064302229.


Urban Design and Development: Ways of Seeing

Jacobs, Allan. “Clues” and “Seeing Change” from Looking at Cities. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1985, pp. 30-83 and 99-107. ISBN: 0674538919.

Buy at MIT Press Lynch, Kevin. “A Walk Around the Block.” City Sense and City Design: Writings and Projects of Kevin Lynch. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1980, pp. 185-204. ISBN: 0262620952.

Ryan, Brent, and Larry Sass. “First Dudley Street Vision Walk.” October 1999. Unpublished document.

Tietz, Michael B. “Neighborhood Economics: Local Communities and Regional Markets.” Economic Development Quarterly 3, no. 2 (May 1989): 111-122.


Physical and Economic Tools Preparation for Field Trip

Moughtin, Cliff. “Analysis.” In Urban Design: Method and Techniques. Oxford, UK: Architectural Press, 2003, pp. 73-98. ISBN: 0750657189.

Waxman, Andy. “Utilizing Economic Theories of Retail to Revitalize Inner-City Neighborhood Business Districts: The Case of Upham’s Corner Main Streets.” Master’s Thesis, MIT, 1999, chapters 4 and 6. pp. 38-51 and 65-79.

Milder, N. David. Niche Strategies for Downtown Revitalization. New York, NY: Downtown Research and Development Center, 1997, pp. 53-81. ISBN: 0915910403.

Hyde/Jackson Square Background Materials.

Roslindale Village Background Materials.


Field Trip to Client Main Street Districts



Revitalization Strategies I and II

Zielenbach, Sean. The Art of Revitalization. New York, NY: Garland Publishing, 2000, chapter 2, pp. 23-32. ISBN: 0815335989.

Moe, Richard, and Carter Wilkie. Changing Places: Rebuilding Community in the Age of Sprawl. New York, NY: Henry Holt and Company, 1997, chapter 4, pp. 100-141. ISBN: 0805043683.

Seidman, Karl F. “Urban Inner City Commercial Revitalization: A Literature Review.” Unpublished article, June 2002, pp. 21-51. (PDF)


Project Discussion and Planning

Review various master plans and revitalization plans. Take particular note of the scope of each project, the methodology used, the elements of the plan, and the level of detail offered.

Stein, Stanley M., and Thomas L. Harper. “Power, Trust and Planning.” Journal of Planning Education and Research 23 (2003): 125-139.


Economic Planning Tools II: Retail Market Analysis and Economic Planning

Economic Planning Tools III: Asset and Capacity Assessment

National Trust for Historic Preservation. Revitalizing Urban Main Streets. Hyde Park Market Analysis Report, pp. 1-45. Washington, DC: National Trust Main Street Center.

Karl F. Seidman Consulting Services and Mt. Auburn Associates. Brattleboro Market Analysis Report. pp. 1-29. Unpublished document.

Glickman, and Servon. “More than Bricks and Sticks: What is Community Development Capacity.” CUPR Working Paper No. 132. New Brunswick, NJ: Center for Urban Policy Research, Rutgers University, 1997. (PDF)

McKnight, John L., and John P. Kretzmann. Mapping Community Capacity. Institute for Policy Research, Northwestern University, 1996, pp. 1-21. (PDF)

National Civic League. The Community Visioning and Strategic Planning Handbook. pp. 28-34. (PDF - 14MB)


Work Session: Existing Conditions Analysis



Physical Design Tools II: Streetscape

Physical Design Tools III: Image and Neighborhood Form

Buy at MIT Press Hayden, Dolores. Selections from “Urban Landscape History: The Sense of Place and the Politics of Space,” and from “Place Memory and Urban Preservation.” The Power of Place. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1996, pp. 14-43 and 44-78. ISBN: 0262581523.

Buy at MIT Press Jacobs, Allan. “Requirements for Great Streets,” and “Qualities that Contribute.” Chapters 1 and 2 in Great Streets. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1993, Part 2, pp. 270-308. ISBN: 9780262100489.

National Trust for Historic Preservation. Revitalizing Downtown. pp. 43-47, 51-58. Washington, DC: National Trust Main Street Center.

Community Partners Consultants, Inc. “The Arts District Today,” and “The Arts District Vision.” Chapters 2 and 3 in Worcester Massachusetts Arts District Master Plan. Worcester, MA: Arts District Task Force and the City of Worcester. June 2002, pp. 18-29 and 31-50. 

City of Boston Transportation Department, Streetscape Guidelines for Boston’s Major Roads. 1999, pp. 1-26. (PDF - 2.0 MB)

City of Toronto Department of Planning and Development. City of Toronto Streetscape Manual. 1996, pp. 20-21, P-3, P-4, L-1, L-3, L-8, L-17.


Work Session



Work Session (cont.)



Presentation of Student Work



Work Session: Synthesis



Work Session: Discussion/Reflection on Work to Date

Edelman, Murray. “Space and the Social Order.” Journal of Architectural Education 32, no. 2 (November 1978): 2-7.

Wilson, Phoebe Wall. “A Day in the Life of a Neighborhood Place.” In Everyday Urbanism. Edited by John Chase, Margaret Crawford, and John Kaliski. New York, NY: Monacelli Press, 1999, pp. 120-135. ISBN: 1885254814.

Sanoff, Henry. Community Participation Methods in Design and Planning. New York, NY: John Wiley, 2000. pp. 8-14 and 37-104. ISBN: 0471355453.


Policies and Interventions I: Safety and Sanitation

National Crime Prevention Council. Crime Prevention through Environmental Design Guidebook. pp. 3-28. (PDF)

Eastside Neighborhood Development Company. Payne Arcade Main Street Program. St. Paul, MN: ESNDC Crime and Safety Committee, Application for MetLife Foundation Community-Police Partnership Award. Unpublished document.

Houston, Lawrence O., Jr. BIDS: Business Improvement Districts. Washington, DC: Urban Land Institute and International Downtown Association, 1997, pp. 59-72. ISBN: 087420819X.

Thacher, David. “The Community Security Initiative Lessons Learned.” John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University Working Paper 00-05-17, July 2000. pp. 1-30. (PDF)


Policies and Interventions II: Development

Policies and Interventions III: Design and Zoning Guidelines

Community Partners Consultants, Inc. “The Economic Benefits.” Chapter 4 in Worcester, Massachusetts Arts District Master Plan. Worcester, MA, Arts District Task Force and City of Worcester, July 2002, pp. 51-58. (PDF - 8.5 MB)

Goody, Clancy and Associates. Strategic Revitalization Plan for Central Avenue, Albany. City of Albany, September 2000. pp. 59-67. Unpublished document.

Ferguson, Bruce W., Mary M. Miller and Cynthia Liston. “Retail Revitalization.” Economic Development Commentary 19, no. 4 (Winter 1996).

Hernandez, Manuel Martinez. “Impact of Commercial Development on Inner City Revitalization: an Analysis of Projects in Boston.” MCP Thesis, MIT, 2001, pp. 7-19, 113-126.

Gratz, Roberta Brandes. “Rebuilding Place, Valuing Transit.” Chapter 5 in Cities Back From the Edge. New York, NY: John Wiley and Sons, Inc., 1998, pp. 113-137. ISBN 0471144177.

Hinshaw, Mark. “Design Review.” APA Planning Advisory Service Report No. 454, February 1995, pp. 19-32.

Bernick, Michael. “New York: Commuter Town Revival.” Chapter 10 in Transit Villages in the 21st Century. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill, 1997, pp. 271-286. ISBN: 0070054754.

Proakis, George John. “Strategies for Design: Shaping Private Development Adjacent to Transit Stations.” MCP Thesis, MIT, 2002.

Scheer, Brenda Case. “Introduction: The Debate on Design Review.” In Design Review: Challenging Urban Aesthetic Control. Edited by Brenda Case Scheer and Wolfgang F. E. Preiser. New York, NY: Chapman and Hall, 1994, pp. 1-10. ISBN: 0412991616.

Boston Main Streets Commercial District Guidelines 1999.

Various Design and Development Guidelines.


Policies and Interventions II: Business Development, Retention, and Attraction

Policies and Interventions III: Marketing and Promotion

Seidman, Karl F. “Revitalizing Commerce for American Cities,” and “Economic Restructuring.” Chapter 5 and 6 in A Practitioner’s Guide to Implementing Urban Main Streets. Vol. 1. pp. 23-38 and 56-70. (PDF - 1.8 MB)

Toups, Catherine, and James H. Carr. “Reimaging Distressed Communities: A Strategy to Reverse Decline and Attract Investors.” (PDF) Building Blocks 1, no. 1 (Spring 2000).

Hoffman, Lily M. “The Marketing of Diversity in the Inner City: Tourism and Regulation in Harlem.” International Journal of Urban and Regional Research 27, no. 2 (June 2003): 286-299.

Rypkema, Donovan D. “Commercial gentrification: beyond the rhetoric.” Main Street News (May 2003): 2-5.


Work Session



Policies and Interventions VII: Organization and Capacity Building

Stokvis, Jack R., and James A. Cloar. “CRM: Applying Shopping Center Techniques to Downtown Retailing.” Urban Land (April, 1991): pp. 7-11.

Houston, Lawrence O., Jr. Business Improvement Districts. pp. 8-19

Chaskin, Robert J., Prudence Brown, Sudhir Venkatesh and Avis Vidal. Building Community Capacity. New York, NY: Walter De Gruyter Inc., 2001, pp. 123-157. ISBN: 0202306399

Goody, Clancy and Associates. “Strategic Revitalization Plan for Central Avenue, Albany.” City of Albany, September, 2000, pp. 73-93.


Work Session (cont.)



Work Session: Plan Goals and Themes



Presentation of Plan Frameworks



Work Session: Synthesize Plan Elements



Work Session: Review Plan Elements



Draft Presentation of Plans



Work Session to Finalize Plan and Presentation



Last Day of Class: Reflections Presentation of Revised Draft Plans



Final Plan Report Due


Course Info

As Taught In
Spring 2005
Learning Resource Types
Lecture Notes
Projects with Examples