Blue Sky Comprehensive Planning for Rail Reactivation
Instructor: Thomas G. Dallessio AICP/PP/CPM/FRSA
Blue Sky Planning takes an optimistic and visionary approach to developing an extensive comprehensive plan to a city or region. Accounting for important and emerging topics such as equity, sustainability, and economic resilience, the overarching goal of the proposed comprehensive plan along the former West Trenton Line is to establish a means of fresh and modern regional development and lay the groundwork for a possible future reactivation of passenger rail service.
Over a three-month studio course, 17 graduate-level planning students were tasked with applying transit-friendly design principles to develop a collective vision and recommendations for several municipalities along the historic Reading West Trenton Line – which last saw passenger rail service in 1982. Today, the line is hosted by private freight, and residents largely rely on private vehicles to commute in and out of the region. By analyzing the existing conditions of the rail corridor, using state-of-the-practice planning documents like the newest edition of NJ TRANSIT’s Transit Friendly Planning: A Guide for New Jersey Communities, and applying a holistic approach that incorporates all urban planning concentrations, Blue Sky Planning attempts to comprehensively reimagine this historic region and lay the groundwork for a prosperous and sustainable future