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Mixed Use Town Centre

Autor:   •  April 19, 2017  •  Case Study  •  1,019 Words (5 Pages)  •  74 Views

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Design of a Mixed-Use Town Center

Site Location: Old Saco-Lowell Plant in Easley, South Carolina, USA.

Site Area: 154 acres.

Topography: Major portion of the Southern part flat due to the previous development. The northern part of the site has some contours with dense vegetation.

Connectivity: The location of the site is on the highway 123, this is a major asset for the connectivity potential. The highway 123 leads to the Greenville in a 15 minute drive, this is very good in real estate point of view. The proposed site has good connectivity with Easley and there are surrounding developments with commercial and residential land uses.

The following points explain the design approach to the proposed site:

  • The proposed site has contours on the northern part, remaining site is considered to be flat as there was an existing structure. This region has a very dense vegetation, it has been preserved in the proposed development. And the elevation at the highest point of the contour is designed with a view point that can be accessed through the civic space below.
  • Strong street connections to the proposed site have been established with the surrounding fabric. These connections determine the internal streets on the proposed site, thus forming spaces that has relation to the surrounding network of streets.
  • Internal streets are also designed to develop a focus point at the civic space on the north. And the spaces generated are divided with multiple linkages to avoid huge spaces, enhancing the pedestrian movements.
  • Pedestrian movement considered as a very important factor of the proposed design. The minimum width of any pavement is 10 feet wide to accommodate pedestrian movement and landscaping along the streets.
  • The spaces developed after laying the street networks are programmed with the following land uses:
  1. Residential (20% of the total built-up area).
  2. Commercial (35% of the total built-up area).
  3. Office spaces (35% of the total built-up area).
  4. Amenities (10% of the total built-up area).
  • The proposed building footprints are designed in a proportion that is not too huge nor too small. Most of the buildings are ground plus one floor structures, the streets widths are developed with a 1:2 ratio of the surrounding buildings, this proportion is well accepted according to the urban design principles. And it creates shade in the streets for a better experience of the pedestrian movement.
  • The civic space at the focal point has a town center, swimming pool, tennis courts and a community open space. The parking facility is provided on the periphery of the space to constrain the vehicular movement within the space.
  • The community open space is strategically located at the focal point that is equidistant from all parts of the site. This location also eliminates the security issues because it is visible from all sides and children playing in the space can be monitored by their parents from the town center.
  • Every cluster of the proposed site has its own parking space, this will avoid unnecessary movements for the people to reach their destinations. The parking spaces are filled with a lot of landscaping within and on the periphery. There is one tree space for every two cars in the parking areas. The parking spaces are structured in nature that suits the town centers with building heights of 2-4 levels. And the most important feature of the parking lot design is the size, huge parking lots are avoided in the entire design.
  • The buildings in each cluster are designed using the principle of enclosure. And the enclosed space is mostly an independent open space for that cluster.
  • The buildings in all the clusters are aligned in sectors that develops a harmonious pattern with interesting views and vistas.
  • An iconic hotel is placed on the south western parcel of the proposed site. This is a corner point and has good potential to become a land mark. The hotel is the tallest building on the proposed with 4 levels. The design of this building could as a landmark could increase the value of the whole town center.
  • The school building is placed on the northeastern part of the site, adjacent to the community space.  The parking space is pushed towards the front of the building to stop the vehicular movement inside the school site. Vehicular movement inside the school site is always dangerous.
  • The town center with an area more than 150 acres, definitely requires a hospital.  A hospital building is proposed adjacent to the school.
  • A fire station is also very important in the case of an emergency. It is always preferable to have a dedicated fire station for a community rather than depending on the city forestation. So, a fire station has been proposed on the northeastern part of the site.
  • A storm water treatment plan has been proposed on the southwestern part of the site due to the slope considerations. The south western part of the site is having a least elevation.
  • The commercial spaces are developed in there sectors that are in the central part of the site, reaching towards the focal point. This location has been chosen for commercial buildings because, it creates rich street networks with activities on both sides of the street. A pedestrian can enjoy his walk in reaching a desired point on the site.
  • The streets adjacent to the commercial spaces are designed wide to have street dining, bicycle lane, pedestrian movement and a green buffer that protects the pedestrians/cyclists.
  • Residential spaces are located in the northwestern part of the site that has proximity to the civic space and the commercial space. This location reduces the walking time for a resident, enhances pedestrian movement. Ultimately, leads towards the success of the project.
  • The office spaces are placed on the southeastern part d the site because the offices needs to be located on a space that is not too busy and crowded.
  • A space on the northeastern part is left vacant for any future development. And the space can be utilized as an open space till a new activity is proposed.


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