According to participants in a PS21 workshop, inexpensive measures like better seating, food trucks, planned activities, better lighting and basic landscaping could transform under-utilized spaces in downtown Portsmouth and enhance popular locations.
More than 40 citizens took part in ‘walkability audit’ and ‘place-making’ workshop in late October that focused on four downtown Portsmouth locations:
- Vaughan Mall
- Fat Belly Square (aka Market and Hanover streets)
- Market Square
- State Street (main between the Unitarian Church and Fleet Street)
Participants asked: Were the places welcoming, cooperative and neighborly? Did they have vital uses and enjoyable activities? Were the locations walkable, convenient and accessible? Were they safe, clean and attractive?
Ideas from the brainstorming session and the ‘place-making’ principles that informed it are summarized in a newly released report from PS21 (Portsmouth Smart Growth for the 21st Century) and Jane Lafleur, the workshop leader from the organization Lift360.
The workshop, which followed a showing of the classic film on place-making, “The Social Life of Small Urban Spaces,” generated dozens of ideas for enhancing downtown locations. PS21 plans a public session in January to discuss ideas.
ADU Ordinance Heads to City Council
An ordinance allowing accessory dwelling units (ADUs), as required by a recently passed state law, goes to the Portsmouth City Council on Dec. 5. The proposed ordinance can found on PlanPortsmouth.com.
For a primer on ADUs, see Accessory Dwelling Units: What they are and why people build them?
Season Sponsors: Piscataqua Savings Bank, Coruway Film Institute
Event Partners: 3S Artspace, City of Portsmouth, Seacoast Media Group, The Sound
ABOUT PS21: Portsmouth Smart Growth for the 21st Century presents ideas and encourages discussion and policy development around planning issues in Portsmouthh, N.H. and the Seacoast. Our goal is to support a vibrant, sustainable, livable, and walkable community compatible withthe principles of smart growth, the historic nature of Portsmouth, and the context of the 21st century. PS21 maintains a blog and e-newsletter at www.ps21.info, and archives video recordings of many events