Siting Retail

Locate retail strategically so that businesses receive adequate foot traffic and are located near other complementary businesses.


Retail services may be spread among stations along a corridor and need not coexist at a single transit station.

  • Cluster new retail in nodes or districts where existing retail is located, near complementary existing amenities, and in close walking proximity (within a five- and no more than a ten-minute walk) to a transit station.
  • Enhance the environment and safety conditions of the walking and/or biking paths from the transit station to/from retail, such as creating buffers from vehicle traffic, improving lighting, and providing a direct route.
  • Prioritize ground floor uses to serve pedestrians along key street frontages within a five-minute walk of a transit station and encourage or require street-facing retail uses at the ground level of parking structures to activate and enhance the street frontage.
Design Guidelines
Policy & Implementation
The Role of Local Government & Transit First Policies
Guiding Principles of Land Use
Flexible Zoning Strategies
Street Design Implementation
Revising Transportation Analysis Practices
Transportation Demand Management
Rethinking Vehicle Parking Requirements
Parking Management
Best Practices to Attract Successful Developers
Clarifying Design Expectations
Integrating Retail into Transit Oriented Development
Community Planning for Rail Transit
Additional Resources
Photo of sidewalk with people standing and walking with trees between parked vehicles and store entrances open
Monterey Road near Gilroy Caltrain Station, Gilroy, CA (Source: Flickr - Sergio Ruiz)