Criticism of Middleton Hills Development

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Posts: 1551
Joined: Thu Jan 06, 2005 5:44 pm
Location: Austin,Texas

Post by JimM »

Eric Saed wrote:

Take a tour of a local Parade of Homes or builder's expo, and I think that might put it in perspective.

Fair enough, but I just call 'em as I see 'em and enjoy a good debate. I'm not even a particularly original designer (see my other ballsy post), but I stand by my point that a quality one-off is still a one-off, and there is too much good architecture out there not created so lazily. "What would Frank say?" is relevant, if his work is to be truly inspirational.

Peter Beers
Posts: 33
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2005 6:30 am
Location: Virginia

Work where you live where you shop

Post by Peter Beers »

Oy oy. I kind-of weighed in on this on the Prairie-Mod blog. It is either down at the moment or blocked by my works server.

It seems to me that one of the goals to all of this sprawl control is the idea that you'd work and shop close to where you live. Highly populated areas would seem much more livable if EVERY activity a family did was not started by getting into a car and driving.

I kind-of like that idea. I live that way myself as much as I can. Work is a long way off, but most of the time I commute by bicycle.

I live, however, in the Washington, DC area. The only people who seem to subscribe to that kind of lifestyle are not the suburban folks who do so by choice, but the urban folks who do so by necessity.

There are some cool mini-communities popping up in the very densely populated, close-in suburbs of DC that combine living space and retail areas. They're placed in areas where there a lot of office buildings and businesses. Many folks travel to work by Metro because it is expensive to own a car and park it at either work or home.

Am I off base in my analysis of part of the goals of this project?

So much of the DC area is diametrically opposed to that sort of thing. People who want to avoid the sprawl just move further and further out and commute further and further to work. I work with people who daily commute from Fredericksburg, VA (it takes 2+ hours each way) and Harper's Ferry, WV (even further out).

If you build it, will they come?


The DC area has a planned community nearby. Reston, VA has lots of green space, bike paths and planned living for people of most income levels. It is located fairly close to the Dulles Technical corridor, where plenty of people work. The public transit is quite good as are the bike paths. I have no idea how many people actually work close to home. I know there are quite a few who don't. Almost everyone that I know who lives in Reston works either in DC, or somewhere with a similar length commute.

Sorry that my discussion mentions nothing about architecture's impact on quality of life. I was thinking of this from a different point of view.


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