~ The New Urbanism ~

The new Kentlands development in Gaithersburg, Maryland

"The New Urbanism is a reaction to sprawl. A growing movement of architects, planners, and developers, the New Urbanism is based on principles of planning and architecture that work together to create human-scale, walkable communities.

"From modest beginnings, the trend is beginning to have a substantial impact. More than 600 new towns, villages, and neighborhoods are planned or under construction in the US, using principles of the New Urbanism. Additionally, hundreds of small-scale new urban infill projects are restoring the urban fabric of cities and towns by reestablishing walkable streets and blocks."

(Robert Steuteville, New Urban News)

"About once a week we receive a call from someone who has read about one of the new towns we've designed, and is prepared to move almost anywhere to experience the sense of community described. Our first response is to ask the caller to consider one of the older towns that has served as our inspiration.  Frankly, as residents of traditional communities ourselves, we wonder why someone would want to live in a brand-new development rather than a neighborhood that has matured over generations of use."

(Duany, Plater-Zyberk, Speck, Suburban Nation)

  • Overview: New Urbanism defined, plus the 13 principles of working neighborhoods from "New Urban News."

  • Smart Growth America: Smart Growth America is a nationwide coalition promoting a better way to grow.  One that protects farmland and open space, revitalizes neighborhoods, keeps housing affordable, and provides more transportation choices.

  • Virtual New Urbanist Neighborhood:  Explore a virtual New Urbanist Neighborhood at National Geographic.

  • The Transect: Developed by Andres Duany and DPZ, the Transect is a categorization system that organizes all elements of the urban environment on a scale from rural to urban.

  • Slideshow: An online slideshow about New Urbanism.

  • Congress for the New Urbanism: the major professional organization.

  • Lexicon of the New Urbanism:  Today, strip malls are called "town squares," six-lane suburban arterials are called "parkways," and cookie-cutter housing subdivisions are called "villages." Lexicon of the New Urbanism is establishing a vocabulary and set of standards of urban form for planners, developers and citizen activists to use in the creation of traditional neighborhoods.

  • Divided We Sprawl. A call for the reinvention of the American city and suburb that would exploit the infrastructure of the one  and mitigate the "frantic privacy" of the other.

  • A Conservative Case Against Suburbia.  "If we step back and compare suburbs to the ways people have lived for most of human history, we see that suburbia is actually a fairly radical social experiment, and one directly linked to many modern woes."

  • Antidotes to Sprawl Taking Many Forms.  State and local initiatives are currently supporting projects as varied as the reconfiguring of a fishing village on Long Island, the conversion of an 1856 lock factory in a rundown section of Norwalk, Conn., into office space and the transfer of development rights from tracts of privately owned wilderness to parcels already zoned for construction.
  • New Urbanist Communities near Syracuse:

    • Annesgrove, a "new traditional" neighborhood being built in Camillus.

  • New Urbanist Communities around the country:

    • Ladysmith, Virginia. "A new community to live, work and play, where traditional values and modern lifestyles find perfect harmony."

    • Middleton Hills, Wisconsin. "Middleton Hills is a neighborhood for the present, designed with a sense for the past."

    • I'On, South Carolina.  I'On is a Lowcountry village of remarkable architectural and natural beauty, shimmering lakes and salty creeks, fine eateries and offices you can walk to, and ample spaces to play. I'On is a place to LIVE.

    • Mashpee Commons, Massachusetts.  "Mashpee Commons embodies traditional New England style."

    • Amelia Park, Florida.  "If you've ever imagined what it would be like to combine the community values of a traditional neighborhood with the modern conveniences of the new millennium... well, here we are."

    • Glenwood Park, Atlanta. "With a mix of pleasant tree-lined streets, city houses, townhouses, apartments, stores, and parks, we are creating a lively new city neighborhood two miles from the center of downtown Atlanta."

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