Mixed-use development continues to be a buzzword in the architecture and design industry, and for good reason. In its ideal format, this planning concept co-locates homes, office space, recreation, retail and transit. Mixed-use, or “smart,” development, essentially creates a universal space to work, play, shop and live.
This type of planning is in high demand because it:
- Offers an efficient use of land
- Fits consumers’ changing lifestyle preferences
- Creates a diversified portfolio for investors
- Reduces air pollution and strain on traffic infrastructure
- Encourages healthier lifestyle: More walking, increased sense of community
All of these factors are driving a home buying trend that leans towards urbanization and walkable communities over single family homes in suburban neighborhoods. (Read: What’s Driving the Trend in Cities & Suburbs.) Many residents and visitors crave a vibrant environment that emphasizes the convenience and all-encompassing experience delivered through mixed-use development.
Currently, Loveless Porter Architects is involved in two mixed-use development projects: Tillet Hall in Manassas, VA and Walker Drive in Warrenton, VA. Both will feature 5-6 story buildings with residential units perched above retail space, with the potential for office space in the future. At Tillet Hall, LPA is once again tasked with preserving the historic character of an old building while adding modern conveniences. Much like the the QBE project in Gainesville, our architects will design around an existing structure, which will become the centerpiece of the new additions.
Look for more on both of these projects, and the mixed-use/smart development trend, in future posts!