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Reid Ewing, Ph.D.
Land Use and Transportation Expert

Dr. Ewing is a National Treasure

  • Third most referenced researcher: 33,000+ citations

  • Twelve books on walkability, climate, health, etc.

  • Available for limited advisory services through both Urban Innovators and Metro Analytics

  • PhD in Urban Planning, MIT

  • Masters in Engineering, Planning, Harvard

  • Chair, Metropolitan Research Center 
    at the University of Utah

Specialties of Excellence

Dr. Ewing is the director of the Metropolitan Research Center at the University of Utah and consults through Urban Innovators when needed. He is the world’s 3rd most cited urban planning researcher, with over 33,000 citations as of 2022.  He advises on several projects and committees in the Salt Lake Area and nationally.  


Ewing’s 12 books include Pedestrian and Transit Oriented Design, co-published by the Urban Land Institute and American Planning Association; Growing Cooler: Evidence of Urban Development and Climate Change, published by the Urban Land Institute; and Best Development Practices, listed by the American Planning Association (APA) as one of the 100 “essential” books in planning over the past 100 years.

  • Transportation / Land-use Interaction

  • Effects of 7Ds on travel behavior

  • Statistical analysis, regression

  • Easy to understand educator

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7Ds that Reduce Vehicle Miles Traveled:
One of Dr. Ewing's most significant achievements is the fundamental research underlying what has come to be known as the seven D's of the built environment and the level to which they influence VMT.  Urban Innovators as a firm is building on this framework to help communities create walkable, economically vibrant "Places." 


Dr. Ewing has validated elasticities associated with Density, Diversity of Uses, Design of networks and multimodal environment, Destination accessibility, Demographic mix, Distance to transit, and Demand Management efforts.  With this framework, we have developed calculators to help estimate parking needs, traffic levels, and justification for investment in alternative modes in would-be walkable environments.   

​Other Achievements:

  • Planning magazine, 71 bi-monthly columns on Research You Can Use

  • Over 120 peer reviewed articles

  • Popular state rep. from Tucson, AZ

Project Examples
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Pedestrian and Transit-Oriented Design:  "Explaining how to design spaces for pedestrians while also accommodating transit needs, this book is an excellent reference for students, public sector planners and officials, and private sector designers and developers seeking to make places more pedestrian- and transit-friendly. Written by a noted expert on pedestrian design and planning, this handbook contains examples of zoning codes from different localities." (From Amazon)

Growing Cooler:  "Based on a comprehensive study review by leading urban planning researchers, this investigative document demonstrates how urban development is both a key contributor to climate change and an essential factor in combating it—by reducing vehicle greenhouse gas emissions." (From Amazon)

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Basic Quantitative Research Methods for Planners:  "In most planning practice and research, planners work with quantitative data. By summarizing, analyzing, and presenting data, planners create stories and narratives that explain various planning issues. Particularly, in the era of big data and data mining, there is a stronger demand  for data-driven storytelling.

The book presents relatively complex material in the simplest and clearest way possible, and through the use of real world planning examples, makes the theoretical and abstract content of each chapter as tangible as possible. Valuable for anyone who consumes the research of others and needs to judge its validity and reliability." (From Amazon)

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Measuring Urban Design:  "What makes strolling down a particular street enjoyable? Inviting streets are the centerpiece of thriving, sustainable communities, but it can be difficult to pinpoint the precise design elements that make an area appealing. This accessible guide removes the mystery, providing clear methods to measure urban design.
In recent years, many "walking audit instruments" have been developed to measure qualities like building height, block length, and sidewalk width. But while easily quantifiable, these physical features do not fully capture the experience of walking down a street. In contrast, this book addresses broad perceptions of street environments. It provides operational definitions and measurement protocols of five intangible qualities of urban design, specifically imageability, visual enclosure, human scale, transparency, and complexity." (From Amazon)

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Best Development Practices:  "Case examples of some of today's most acclaimed developments, and best practice guidelines to help developers create vibrant, livable communities-and still make money.  Ewing first searched Florida for the best contemporary developments, then distilled their lessons into guidelines for directing new development and assessing the quality of existing development. The 43 practices outlined in this exciting book cover four areas of development-land use, transportation, the environment, and housing.


The book's recommendations are based upon the experiences of successful developers and supported by empirical research. The proof lies in the compelling real-world examples Ewing highlights throughout the text. Illustrated with dozens of photographs and written in a lively style, this book is must reading for all those seeking better ways to plan and design communities." (From Amazon)

Education and History
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  • PhD, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

  • MCP, Harvard University, City and Regional Planning

  • MS, Harvard University, Engineering and Physics

  • BS, Purdue University, Mechanical Engineering

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