The idea of activating alleyways has been embraced as an urbanist strategy across the globe to reclaim public space for cities and to create more interconnected pedestrian networks. During the COVID-19 pandemic, alleyways were lifelines for restaurants looking to create additional outdoor seating that allowed for safe social-distancing. As alleyways transform from dark, underutilized spaces frequented mostly by service trucks to vibrant arteries within cities that safely connect people and places, they help to create more livable communities. A majority of the robust alleyway activation projects are found in markets that do not face the same heat- related challenges that projects in metropolitan Phoenix will face, limiting applicability. The Waking Up Wall St. project will engage diverse stakeholders and community members to explore, demonstrate, jump-start, and showcase the implementation of a comprehensive alleyway activation approach that is unique to Maricopa County’s hot, desert environment. The approaches developed through this project can be applied throughout metropolitan Phoenix, where there are many other alleys that could be used as year-round pedestrian corridors.
City of Chandler
Healthy Urban Environments