City Planning and Suburban Planning

L.A. isn’t a suburb. We need to stop planning it like one.

Many of our zoning codes are ideal for creating car dependent suburbs, but they don't work well to encourage mixed use cities. This article talks about how zoning in L.A. encourages suburban-style planning. Eugene, like L.A. is a city, not a suburb.  How do our codes encourage and discourage city development?

Hoover’s zoning program, however, was created specifically to facilitate master-planned suburbs on virgin land. It was never designed to work in existing, built-out areas. So it should come as no surprise that today’s city planners struggle to shoehorn urban diversity into suburban zoning schemes that assume car-dominated mobility and a neat separation of uses. This is the reason Los Angeles grants so many variances – that is, deviations from approved zoning constraints — to projects across the city. It’s not because City Hall is in the pocket of wealthy developers, as critics often allege. It’s because our suburban zoning scheme largely doesn’t allow for sensible urban development.
— Mark Vallianatos and Mott Smith, LA Times