Graduation Year

2009

Document Type

Thesis

Degree

M.S.

Degree Granting Department

Geography

Major Professor

Elizabeth Strom, Ph.D.

Keywords

Social capital, Amelia Park, "Traditional neighborhood development", West Park Village, Atlantic Station

Abstract

This research is an exploratory investigation of the potential of New Urbanist planning and design principles to create thriving and successful neighborhoods. New Urbanism is an urban design movement started in the early 1980s that promotes the development of walkable, compact, and diverse neighborhoods. It is the objective of this research to shed light on the value of creating a higher quality of life and more time for ourselves and our families. I hypothesize that New Urbanism may pave the way for recapturing commute time for time with family, creating authentic and successful communities, and engaging with neighbors. Furthermore, by utilizing the design principles of New Urbanism, traditional neighborhoods that re-integrate the activities of daily living may be possible. In short, this research is an explanatory and exploratory investigation that examines whether incorporating the design principles of New Urbanism can create walkable and successful communities that promote community-making with urban patterns that facilitate knowing neighbors, communication among neighbors, community activities, and a long term sense of belonging. This research focuses on three case studies of New Urbanism: a large scale development in Atlanta, Georgia with approximately 3,500 residents, a moderate scale development in Tampa, Florida with approximately 2,000 residents, and a small scale development in Fernandina Beach, Florida with approximately 700 residents. These three case studies provide successful examples of the integration of the design principles of New Urbanism. New Urbanism can be used as the stimulus for the types of neighborhoods Americans has been missing since World War II. At each of these sites, observations were made of the ways in which the design of the development has fostered community and created walkable and livable neighborhoods.

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