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Would you want to live in an new urbanist neighborhood?

Would you live in a new urbanist neighborhood?

  • Absolutely!

    Votes: 16 18.8%
  • Yes, but only if I can paint my garage neon orange

    Votes: 8 9.4%
  • Yes, but only if it was more affordable

    Votes: 20 23.5%
  • Yes, but only if it was an infill development

    Votes: 21 24.7%
  • No way! New urbanism... it's not new and it's not urban!

    Votes: 20 23.5%

  • Total voters
    85
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#1
This is a test. I see that there is a "polling" function and I'm going to see if I can set up a poll here in Cyburbia. I've never done this. So, if this thread gets all screwed up, I apologize in advance. Thanks!

If it does get screwed up, then how about answering this thread anyway? If it was me, I might live in a new urbanist neighborhood, as long as it had a mix of incomes. I wouldn't want to be around a bunch of sameness, but I guess that's the irony, given that most of these places have strict architectural codes.
 

Planderella

     
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#2
No fair!! I wanted to vote more than once. :( I wouldn't want to live in a contrived environment and that's the impression I get from new urbanism. It has its merits but I think I'll pass on this one.
 
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#3
No way! All the new urbanist communities I know of are auto oriented, except for a small shopping district. I hate driving. I don't want to live anywhere where I have to drive to work. Anybody know of a new urbanist community in which a planning department has located? I sold my car last year and hope to never need to buy a new one.
 

Downtown

     
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#4
I visited Orlando with my husband's family this summer, and we went to see Celebration. My husband (who is a planner) and I both were very intrigued by alot of the different things they had going on there, but my father in law, who isn't always the most erudite, described the place as a "Cult". but then, he was really bent out of shape that the town didn't have a catholic church. Celebration was pretty, but also pretty sterile.
 

Vlaude

Cyburbian
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#5
Pros & Cons

I think a major downfall to much of neo-classical or New Urbanism developments are their cost. And usually uncalled for in my opinion, its supply & demand. The developer gets more for selling less in most cases.

A well thought out New Urb / Mixed Use area has a lot of positives that attract me. Areas that are pedestrian friendly are great, but don't forget the auto. I really like the Doughnut designs in mixed uses area, with some parking inside or in the center hiding the autos and keeping the place pedestrian friendly.

What I don't like is the (I restate!)cost. Secondly, many of the environments are sterile with too much concrete and not enough small localized commons...
 
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#6
i live in southwest england. around here, first-time buyers and local people are getting priced out of the market by second-home owners from the city buying up the old village houses.

developments on the scale to include new urbanist ideas in my region are forced to include a proportion of affordable housing. they also do not appeal to many of the holidaymakers who want 'traditional' village life. as such, they contain a broader spectrum of society and foster greater community spirit.

i wouldn't choose to live in any that i have seen, but i would definately choose them over the other, purely profit-driven developments i see around the place.
 
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#7
I find the concept of New Urbanism rather intriguing. However, I find it difficult to reconcile the similarity that the movement draws between "place" and "community." I don't believe that values such as community or oneness come from the setting in which we place ourselves.

I'm most fearful that the New Urbanist centers of today will be the ghettos of tomorrow.
 
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#8
New Urbanism

I think it's a good idea, but the cost is what gets me. The City I work for just went in on a beautiful transit village, but I wouldn't move in just because they want $900/month for an apartment half the size of where I currently live. It's cheaper for me to live 10 minutes away than across the street from my job because you can't really get around without a car in North Dallas.
 

Vlaude

Cyburbian
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#9
Texasplanner? What development?

Just curious what development you're speaking of. I have visited a number of the New Urban Developments down there like Legacy Trail, State of Thomas, Addison Circle, etc... My favorite I would have to say would be State of Thomas, I think RTKL did some of the design and development work there... ALL ARE WAY OVER PRICED!!! Only upper class living for the most part... Just my 2 cents, nice but higer priced.

What development are you talking about?
 
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#10
ambivilent

I liked some of the features of my old urban neighborhoods that inspire new urbanists -- walkability, front porches, detached garages. Then again I see some features that are considered blighting influences in my current job -- small lots, alleys, multiple uses, etc. I grew up with all this and more in inner city neighborhoods and it's comfortable to me.
The difference I see is that new urbanist settlements are for another class of people. I don't see much mention of affordable housing or accomodations for cultural differences. What happens when the kids in these neighborhoods plug in their guitars or pull out their skateboards? Where are there allowances for groups of unrelated individuals like students or even cooperative households? Didn't people start gravitating to large lots so they wouldn't have to put up with noisy neighbors and their cars parked all over the place?
Maybe I'm wrong about this. And I certainly like seeing a return to relatively traditional housing styles and layouts -- even though it will take 50 years for the trees to grow up and the areas to develop some character and individualuty. Would I live in such a development? Could I afford it? I don't know.
 
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#11
Answer

East Side VIllage in Plano is a new one, right on the DART track. There is also a very expensive (but very nice) complex in Las Colinas on Lake Caroline.
 
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#12
Much of my problem with new urban developments is that the houses lots etc. all look the same. A real traditional area has style and the new residential developments, of all kinds, apear to be built to remove all individuality.
 
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#13
New Urban Living

Only if I could have a 1-5 acre lot, three car garage and no sidewalks to shovel.

OK, seriously, if I were to live in a city, yes, definitely New Urban or one of the original neighborhoods they are based upon. Still, I would have to have a second home out in the country where I could garden, feed birds, see the stars, shoot at cats, and get away from the crowds.
 
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#14
you can have it all

RE:"Still, I would have to have a second home out in the country where I could garden, feed birds, see the stars, shoot at cats, and get away from the crowds."

We have most of this on our 50 x 180 central city lot. Increasing areas of lawn are replaced with gardens and wildlife habitat every year. My wife feeds the birds and was recently rewarded with the sighting of a Cooper's Hawk attempting to feed on the birds. There are scads of stray cats and occasional gunfire (though I'm not sure the two are related). I'm sure I can't imagine the stars you can see out in your dairy air but we've got large uncrowded parks just a short drive away.
 
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#15
50' x 180' lot - my driveway is 500' long! My vegetable garden is 50' x 70', and I have a prairie about the same size. Add in the flower gardens, woodland garden, fruit trees and shrubs, and about a half acre of heavily shaded, occassionally mowed lawn. I have three acres of pines to the north, maybe 40 acres of hay field behind the barns, and a quarter mile of soybeans between me and the nearest subdivision.Several types of hawks and owls are among the more than 60 bird species that visit my yard, including two threatened ones. Then there are the dozen or so different kinds of frogs I have to move out of the way when I do mow the lawn, raccoons, oppossum, deer, skunks, chipmunks.... The yard is turning into a wildlife sanctuary.

There's nothing wrong with traditional neighborhoods. They are the best form of urban development as I see it. But they don't meet everyone's needs. For now, I choose the country. (Not sprawl, though. The house is 130 years old - almost as old as the oak in the front yard.)
 
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#16
So do you have a spare room for visitors?

It sounds great. Real Aldo Leopold stuff. But I'd hate to have to clear the snow from that drive!
 
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#17
I live in what you might call a New Urbanist community. It's an infill development designed using some of the principles of NU (front porches, back alley garages, small lots), but it lacks any mixed uses. It's 100% residential with some parkland set aside. Then again, since it's an infill development, the other amenities alredy exist in the surrounding neighborhood.
 
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#18
How many planners out there are seeing 'New Urban' neighborhoods built without commercial or public uses? I think this a real trend, and would actually push for it. Here in Wisconsin, we have mostly small communities - under 15,000 people. It is possible to build new residential neighborhoods within walking distance of the downtown. Should these be typical suburban neighborhoods, or incorporate New Urban concepts that really make them an extension of existing development?

Even where the downtown is a bit far (though still possible) to walk, there is usually an insufficient market to support additional commercial retail or services, if it would be built into a new development. We are not talking about large subdivisions here. We tend to think anything over 100 homes is big for most communities. In this context, it makes sense to me to construct a purely residential neighborhood with New Urban forms. An agglomeration of these neighborhoods may be built by several developers, over years, tied to an existing downtown or eventual commercial core.
 

boiker

Cyburbian
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#19
Michael Stumpf wrote:
How many planners out there are seeing 'New Urban' neighborhoods built without commercial or public uses? I think this a real trend, and would actually push for it. Here in Wisconsin, we have mostly small communities - under 15,000 people. It is possible to build new residential neighborhoods within walking distance of the downtown. Should these be typical suburban neighborhoods, or incorporate New Urban concepts that really make them an extension of existing development?

Even where the downtown is a bit far (though still possible) to walk, there is usually an insufficient market to support additional commercial retail or services, if it would be built into a new development. We are not talking about large subdivisions here. We tend to think anything over 100 homes is big for most communities. In this context, it makes sense to me to construct a purely residential neighborhood with New Urban forms. An agglomeration of these neighborhoods may be built by several developers, over years, tied to an existing downtown or eventual commercial core.
you have to think of a city on the terms of a pedistrian level, rather than a car level.

Neighborhood centers, nice stuff.
 
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#20
Mary wrote:
Much of my problem with new urban developments is that the houses lots etc. all look the same. A real traditional area has style and the new residential developments, of all kinds, apear to be built to remove all individuality.
I have a similar problem with housing estates/developments. I grew up in a house in the North Lincolnshire countryside that was a hundred odd years old and holidayed in a similar (but hillier) place in France every summer. I still get a mild culture shock when I walk out of my front door and realise I live in a house virtually identical to all the surrounding houses and their all right on top of each other (so to speak).

Anyhoo, England's latest answer to (sub?)urban development is Beddington Zero (Fossil) Energy Development, where you can still live in a box identical to your neighbours but you can feel smug because you know you're (allegedly) contributing to sustainable development.
 
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