Ten Planning Lessons From Warsaw, Indiana

Source: flickr.com

Warsaw, Indiana may not be the first place on most folks lists of planning trend setters across the nation, but in most any community one can find both good and bad lessons to learn from. This prosperous city along with adjacent Winona Lake contain of approximately 21,000 residents. Warsaw is the county seat of Kosciusko County, and is situated roughly midway between Fort Wayne and South Bend in the Northeast lakes region of Indiana.

Source: landsat.com

Here’s my list of ten from the “Orthopedic Capital of the World.” They are presented in no particular order of importance.

  • Street trees and landscaping are needed along all sidewalks to make them more pedestrian friendly and welcoming.
  • An historic Carnegie Library can be enlarged tastefully and keeping with the original architecture.
  • Having major corporations headquartered in a smaller city can be a boon to more than the economy, provided they are socially responsible.
  • Warsaw is the smallest city where I’ve seen a bike share program established and operating.
  • When your city is blessed with freshwater lakes, it is critical to make them accessible all residents.
  • Even smaller cities like Warsaw can be an economic powerhouse when the the right entrepreneurial seeds are planted.
  • Smaller cities can suffer from the ill effects of sprawl just like larger ones.
  • Smaller cities need to identify workable and reliable transportation alternatives to single occupant cars, as their downtowns seem particularly susceptible to surface parking craters.
  • Preserve as much of your original historic downtown as possible, for it’s harder and more expensive to re-create.
  • Rural roadways without shoulders may actually be an unexpected traffic calming technique, as the roads feel much narrower.
This entry was posted in bicycling, bike sharing, business, Cars, cities, commerce, Communications, demographics, downtown, economic development, environment, geography, Health care, historic preservation, history, infrastructure, land use, landscape architecture, placemaking, planning, revitalization, spatial design, sprawl, Statistics, technology, tourism, traffic, transportation, urban planning, walking, zoning. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Ten Planning Lessons From Warsaw, Indiana

  1. This is really tardy, but I’ll post my comments any way. I just posted a comment on the website of the PBS NewsHour about city trees, opposing trees planted on narrow parkways between sidewalks & streets. It’s not a good habitat for the trees, and creates problems with falling leaves and storm hazards.
    I’ve opposed roads without shoulder for decades, taking some vicious heat from Easterners who don’t want road shoulders. Shoulders give motorists safe places to ditch in emergencies, without hitting one of the pretty trees right next to the road.

    Liked by 1 person

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