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The Bluffs at Midtown

Ventura, California
Firm Role
Street design; bicycle and pedestrian planning; parking and transportation demand management
20 acres

Individual blocks, interconnected streets, inviting open spaces and a diverse array of building types form The Bluffs at Midtown, a walkable mixed-use community located in midtown Ventura. Patrick Siegman directed the plan’s transportation component while a Principal at Nelson\Nygaard, as part of a team led by Moule & Polyzoides.

The twenty-acre infill neighborhood features 487 residences on 12 acres of developed land, preserves five acres of usable open space and features a small neighborhood center of offices and retail. An assortment of building types and unit sizes accommodates a variety of household types, income levels and lifestyles, providing opportunities for live-work, commercial and retail. The plan’s compact mix of courtyard housing, townhomes, and bungalows replace an underused industrial zone, in keeping with the City's strategy of growing up rather than out.

Mr. Siegman led all aspects of transportation planning, including assessing traffic impacts, collaborating with neighbors to develop traffic calming measures for nearby streets, and preparing the project's parking and transportation demand management strategy.

The plan’s slender, tree-lined streets and shared parking minimize impervious services and heat island effects. Sustainable storm water management practices recharge ground water supplies and filter out pollutants by collecting rainwater in underground filtration systems and directing overflow to low points in parkway planting strips and neighborhood greens.

The site is bisected by an active rail line, which forces neighbors to the north to walk or bike on busy arterials to reach the beach. To provide a safer, quieter alternative, a bicycle/pedestrian bridge over the tracks connects the neighborhood’s retail center to a small public green on the project’s north side. The bridge helps knit together the site, adding value to both the project’s northern parcels and the existing neighborhood.

Images courtesy of Moule and Polyzoides