Promoting Transit Oriented Development at the Local Level: The Opportunities and Challenges for Local Governments
Transit-Oriented Development initiatives, whether they concern singular, localized projects or comprehensive programs to reform planning and development practice across larger geographical or jurisdictional entities, affect and engage the local level of government in fundamental ways. While the origins of strategic directives about TOD vary greatly between different tiers of government or non-government players, local councils usually hold statutory land use planning authority over the sites in question and are thus in a critical position to oversee the implementation of TOD-related measures. In some cases, such as Redevelopment Authorities, planning authority is delegated to public-private entities set up for the purpose of comprehensive planning. In other cases, councils themselves are the main facilitators of redevelopment activities around public transport, and their own strategic land use priorities on TOD sites and elsewhere within their jurisdiction can carry considerable weight towards supporting or undermining the viability and quality of transit-oriented development.