Ideas For St Mike’s by Beverly Spears

Spears Architects envisioned a pedestrian/bicycle friendly “frontage lane” with parallel parking separated from thru traffic by a tree filled median…

Bicycle and Pedestrian friendly "side streets" separated from thru traffic with tree filled median


Reasonably narrow lanes to naturally slow traffic to posted speed limit.

  1. Stoplights to be in median, pole mounted without arms.
  2. Curbs to have tight radius corners for slower speeds and greater pedestrian safety.
  3. Permanent white markings for crosswalks and lanes.


  1. All utilities underground.
  2. Utilities under access street to avoid conflict with tree roots.
  3. Streetlights to be scaled to pedestrians and placed in the medians at close intervals.


  1. Native plants in medians for hardiness, low water use, and regional identity.
  2. Plants to be deciduous trees and low (30” maximum) shrubs to provide spatial definition, summer shade, winter sun, and clear visibility at eye level for security.
  3. Rainwater from streets and sidewalks collected and stored to reuse as irrigation for plantings.
  4. Walking and jogging path of compacted crusherfines slightly meandering in the center of the medians.
  5. A few benches in the medians.
  6. Bollards on edge of median by access lane and pedestrian realm to allow stormwater drainage into median.
  7. Openings in raised curb between through lanes and medians to allow stormwater into medians.


  1. Bicycles to share driving lane in parking/access realm.
  2. Bicycle racks on the sidewalk.


  1. Parallel parking next to the sidewalk within the pedestrian realm.
  2. Parking temporarily prohibited at sidewalk cafes only during active table service.
  3. Off-street parking only behind buildings.
  4. On-street parking free until a future point when demand overwhelms supply.


Sidewalks lit by sconces attached to buildings.

  1. Sidewalks to allow encroachment of portals, balconies, canopies, awnings, and café tables.
  2. Sidewalks to have bike racks and some planters.


  1. Mixed uses to be mixed with retail and office space predominating the street level and residential and office space on the second and third floors.
  2. Private development to build to edge of right-of-way, either with building façade, or a landscaped walled courtyard.
  3. Buildings along boulevard sidewalk to have frequent doorways, windows and architectural details.
  4. Buildings encouraged to have roof terraces and balconies in keeping with regional tradition and to enliven the street.
  5. Predominantly two-story buildings to a maximum height of 30 feet at street edge with an allowable third-story set back to provide full winter sunlight.
  6. Wall-dominated stuccoed buildings, predominantly contemporary in design.
  7. Thick walls, flat roofs, portals, zaguans, canales, and bancos encouraged. Corbels, viga ends, curvilinear parapets, pitched roofs discouraged.
  8. Stucco colors from a palette reminiscent of mid-century Santa Fe and northern New Mexico as well as Colonial Mexico.
  9. Sinage limited in size.
  10. Landmarks needed. A new City Museum established on the Boulevard. Churches, public institutions and government offices encouraged.
Beverley Spears, FAIA, is a residential, commercial and landscape architect. 505.983.6966,,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *