Mixed-use Neighborhoods

By: Benedetto Davi

Photo credit: USDN Sustainable Consumption Toolkit                                                             

Mixed-use neighborhoods are only one of the principles that defines Smart growth, but perhaps the most difficult to achieve. There are various definitions of what mixed-use development means, all of which embed common characteristics:

1)blending vertical and/or horizontal uses (residential, commercial, cultural, industrial, etc.),

2)walkability

3)pedestrian, bike and child friendly environments

4)healthy and resilient communities

5)local economy improvement

Obviously not every urban area and community is set-up for mixed-use land and development.  And noise, pedestrian traffic and congestion are frequent side-effects of mixed-use neighborhoods. Therefore this is where bottom-up planning can take a step towards giving voice to those communities that suffer from the absence of diversity in land-use.

Furthermore, planning policies that point in the direction of polycentric cities, can considerably reduce pressures on public and private transportation, decreasing the number of long distance commuters and traffic congestion.

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  • The Soho Effect
  • Artist: @99piorg

From Soho (South of Houston in NYC) to NOBE (North Oakland Berkeley Emeryville), neighborhoods are being re-branded.  Mostly this trend is initiated by real estate agents, why is this happening and what is the effect?

Listen to this great podcast from @99piorg to discover the story behind the story.

Cover Photography: Aminah Ricks

Where you grow up, “the neighborhood effect”

Until now, urban economists have studied the economic realities within cities, but this new research (Princeton University and Martin Prosperity Institute) takes a more detailed look inside neighborhoods.  This more defined and closer analysis can help us to understand the success and failures of certain areas and the role that gentrification or segregation can play within the urban fabric.

Richard Florida at The Atlantic City Lab presents “what social scientists have dubbed the neighborhood effect, and two recent studies give us a better understanding of exactly how it works.”

Read more here

Photo Credit: Unsplash.com

 

Elevating City Life