Streets provide people with linkages to the places they want to go, as well as different modes of transportation to get there. A person’s experience of a place is connected to the appearance and 'feel', or character, of the street. Streetscape design recognizes the role that streets have in creating successful urban areas, and sense of place within contributes to improving the environmental, economic, and social well-being of neighborhoods and communities. Streetscape is a key component in creating complete streets, which in turn instills a sense of civic pride.
Streetscape design balances the form and function of multiple components within the roadway in order to accommodate pedestrians, cyclists, transit users and drivers. Some objectives of streetscape design include:
- Clearly defined sidewalks, bicycle lanes and roadways to support multiple modes of transportation and minimize conflict between them
- Creating a sense of place by installing unique design features such as custom signage, paving patterns, plantings and public art
- Prioritizing universal accessibility and focusing on pedestrian comfort and safety to create a social and engaging environment
- Applying storm water management strategies and low-maintenance plantings to create sustainable and attractive landscapes
- Optimizing design for long-term tree health to improve air quality and reduce energy use through shading and sheltering
York Region's Streetscape Program develops and implements streetscape and related policies within projects across departments including: Transportation Services, Environmental Services, Infrastructure Planning and York Region Transit (YRT). In addition, York Region collaborates with our nine local municipalities to implement streetscape design on Regional roads.
Streetscaping Policies and Programs