Global Street Design Guide

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Table of Contents

Global Street Design Guide

Siting Guidance

Street vendors should be accommodated where there is a potential demand for their goods and services, such as near major intersections, transit hubs, parks, and plazas. Cities may create plans and guidelines to accommodate street vendors in relevant locations while avoiding conflicts with other users and commercial activities.

Dedicated Spaces

Creating dedicated space allows street vendors to safely and comfortably conduct their business. Avoid encroaching into pedestrian flows in crowded or narrow sidewalks, ensuring a clutter-free pedestrian clear path. Dedicated spaces can
be allocated on sidewalks, in parking lanes, or in the enhancement zone.


Provide seating opportunities in areas with high concentrations of vendors while ensuring walking paths remain clear. During temporary pedestrianization of streets, the use of movable chairs, tables, and benches can be very efficient and cost effective.


Providing storage for street vendors enhances comfort and work conditions and allows them to store unsold goods in a safe place adjacent to their work area. Fixed stands for street vendors in specific areas such as plazas and esplanades can also enhance the character of the space.


Providing power for vendors is very important when selling food or when vendors need electrical equipment and appliances to stay warm during the winter months. Using electrical devices, especially in confined spaces, is safer than gas, wood, or other fuels.

Water and Waste

Access to fresh water is fundamental for food vendors to ensure minimal health and hygiene standards. Provide areas
with high concentrations of vendors with proper waste receptacles and efficient waste collection to maintain clean and attractive areas, and prevent unhealthy conditions. Provide separate receptacles for compostable materials such as food and other organic waste, as well as recyclable items.


Ensure dedicated vending areas are well-lit, providing a safe environment for customers and vendors while doing business. Lighting the area encourages people to spend time and animates spaces that might otherwise be uninviting, increasing eyes on the street.

Hours of Operation

Cities may define hours of operation for on-street vending at specific locations or during specific days. Temporary pedestrianization of streets during weekends or at lunchtime can increase street activity in areas with low to moderate pedestrian volumes, or accommodate a greater number of vendors in otherwise crowded areas.

Adapted by Global Street Design Guide published by Island Press.


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