Beerescourt – Transit Oriented Development (TOD) Part 1

Beerescourt village has the makings of a diverse and very highly urbanised TOD. Presently there are 20 buses per hour travelling north and south through/past Beerescourt Village (Buses #1, #21, #C, and #24, which travels through Hobson St) all linking the Hamilton Transport Centre to Rotokauri Station.

The 2013 census counted 1,164 people living within 400m (an area of 50ha) of  Beerescourt village, giving a population density of 23 people per hectare (2,318 ppkm2)(link to Koordinates, 2013 census). In 2013 this area could be called moderately urbanised with between 1,000-1,500 dwellings per km2. In the past half a decade a lot of building has taken place and now on the east side of Victoria  St the area is looking very highly urbanised, with over 2,500 dwellings per km2. The very highly urbanised build type is also now expanding along Te Rapa road.

The key to a successful TOD is diversity and Beerescourt village has been allowed to have a mix of land uses, making it a place people travel to for work and shopping, and a place local people travel from to work, making it a place where people belong, 24 hours a day.

Beerescourt village is a example of what a mixed use TOD looks like. However, it is missing green space: here we need to consider the balance between on-street parking and green space for young people to play. Menzies St, Macdiamid Rd, Bolmuir Rd, Elizabeth St and Galbraith Ave all offer opportunities to become green play streets within a very highly urbanised neighbourhood. 

Category: News

Diversity – Transit Oriented Development (TOD)

The diversity resulting from TOD comes from allowing it! The outcome is that traffic is not tidal. It may be easier to explain what this kind of diversity is not. It is not a dormitory suburb that is empty during the day or a business centre that is empty during the night. The diverse city resulting from TOD would be expected to at least be moderately urbanised (1,000-1,500 dwellings per km2 or 100-150 dwellings per hectare – Link), have at least double digit numbers of employees per hectare, include a spread of different types of shops/retail, and residents living within 400 to 800 m of transit stops, which provide services at 15-20 frequency per hour into the evening.

Example of 4-lane transport route designed for 2 lanes of peak traffic

Using height near the station to get density risks robbing the pedestrian area of daylight by casting uncomfortable shadows and increasing wind speeds at ground level. We do want density but it needs to be balanced. The data for the top ten locations on the list below come from the Melbourne  Southbank Structure Plan Nov09 Background Report. Note that ‘Four of the five highest dwelling density examples did not exceed 9 storeys. Higher buildings were associated with higher employment densities’ (p111).

The above list of neighbourhoods is not necessarily an example of Transit Oriented Development, but it gives examples of some neighbourhoods that have a mix of dwellings and employment, and some employment-only areas.

Coin St in London is an interesting example, having both high employment and high dwelling density with a Low- to Mid-rise built typology. Employment and dwelling densities can be equal in a low-rise built typology, but a high employment bias location is likely to be higher rise.

Coin St area London – see page 90 of Southbank Report

The Southbank study notes that ‘There was no discernible relationship between active edge and densities. There is a direct relationship between the building height within the study areas and the degree of activity at the street interface’ (p114).This means that as building height goes up, the buildings’ interface with the street becomes more negative.

Category: News