Construction of new standalone developments in historic commercial districts

23 Jul 2019

In the previous blog in this series, I discussed appropriate design principles for new infill construction in Main Street districts. In this segment, I will focus on proper design strategies for standalone developments on larger vacant lots, typically on the edges of districts.

You may have noticed in the past decade that a lot of these new developments have a similar look from project to project and community to community. This new building style doesn’t have an official name yet, but Patrick Sisson of the real estate blog Curbed recently mentioned a Twitter query that asked to name the style. Some humorous proposals included LoMo (low modern), Developer Modern, Simcityism, and Spongebuild Squareparts. But in descriptive terms, it is a style that has a visual base at the ground floor that often incorporates commercial storefronts or covered parking. The upper floors are broken up into multiple bays, with balconies between each to break up what would otherwise be a large, bulky mass. Materials typically include metal siding, trim and windows, with wood or fiber cement siding as accents

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