Master of Landscape Architecture (MLA)


Landscape Architecture

Document Type



As the human population has increased, the consumption of natural resources has become a serious problem for our society. With the possibilities of severe oil shortages, there is a growing need to promote a society which better suits the requirements of pedestrians. At the same time, there is a big push for urban redevelopments to rebuild a strong city center in the United States. It is important that these new redevelopments take into account the changing needs of our society by providing a good pedestrian environment. The main objective of this thesis is to illustrate the fundamental elements that must exist to support a pedestrian friendly environment in downtown areas, to determine the potential and potential problems facing downtown Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and to offer suggestions on how to further bolster these plans in its effort to establish a healthy pedestrian downtown. By analyzing the two selected case studies of Portland and New Orleans, three fundamental components, consisting of eleven criteria were established. These criteria were; Enhancement of the Retail Core, Promotion of Mixed-use Developments and Ground Level Retail, Provision of Restaurants and Bars, Promotion of Cultural and Entertainment Uses Through Public Events and Festivals, and Provision of Downtown Housing Opportunities. All components should work together to provide a diversity of downtown uses thereby generating the critical mass necessary to support a healthy pedestrian environment; Provision of Public Transit Systems, Establishment of Central Transportation Hub, and Enhancement of Sufficient Parking Facilities, should work to ensure accessibility to downtown and to create an environment that is compatible with pedestrians; and Size of the Downtown Area, Size of the City Blocks, and Other Elements Serving to Create a Sense of Human Scale, will condition people’s perception of downtown thereby prompting people to walk. Through analysis of downtown Baton Rouge, many positive aspects were revealed, and the study concluded that downtown Baton Rouge can achieve its goal of a pedestrian friendly downtown. Recommendations stress the urgent need for the improvement of downtown accessibility. Several improvements and enhancements that can further promote the pedestrian friendly environment in downtown Baton Rouge were included.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Max Z Conrad