Envisioning A More Abundant Lifestyle

Serving Ourselves, While Serving Others

A few years ago,  the Sustainable  Neighborhoods Focus Group came up with the idea of giving as a key to a more abundant lifestyle. Currently, infill and new development often give very little to neighborhoods, usually a loss of views and open space, more traffic, and a deadness associated with second homes and single use neighborhoods.

From our Focus Group, a vision emerged where the residents of existing neighborhoods get more; More abundance and aliveness, more safety with neighbors walking on the streets to more conveniently located services. Along with a healthier, more pedestrian friendly lifestyle comes innovative ways to share more amenities, creating a greater sense of community and providing a more affordable lifestyle, a lifestyle beyond suburbia, a lifestyle that lives lighter on the planet.

Roy Wroth's concept diagram

A Neighborhood that Serves Itself, while Serving Others!

The Focus Group identified conceptual “clusters” of homes or workspaces, designed around residents’ simple but fundamental essential common needs; (in other words, the “cluster” could be a scattered site)

  • Child-Oriented Houses
  • a Cohousing Group
  • an Elder Housing Group
  • a Live/work and Commercial Space Cluster
  • a Small Houses and Eco-Homes Compound
  • Artist Cooperative Workshops
  • Young People Living Over Garages….

 

Giving More Amenities, Getting More Life

These different clusters were assigned services to be provided, not only to meet the cluster’s own needs, but as economies of sale require, to meet the needs of the adjoining clusters and the existing, surrounding neighborhoods…. READ MORE >>

Quest for the Killer Modeling Tool continues

The Quest is on!  Ray at Infracycle recommended taking a look at CommunityViz.  Coincidently, recently I’ve attended a couple of their  CommunityViz’s “Community Matters”  webinars….

On capturing customers for successful commercial-

This article about Hershey Pennsylvania’s attempt to revitalize the town, from the ERSI site, has a good discussion on how to figure customer capture using the Huff gravity Model.

I found a video on how to most accurately collect data-  the Block Point method wins! on ERSI’s site, but lost the link. Having the critical numbers of residential to make the commercial successful is one of the essential  pieces to a walkable lifestyle.

Here’s another interesting piece I’m learning about …APIs  Application Programming Interface.  Different software programs create the tools to encourage others to adapt into them with their own needs, thus spreading the usage of the original software.  So this says to me, I’m looking for software that has APIs that integrate into GIS and Google Earth, or maybe I’m looking for Google Earth APIs???

Hey, whatever it takes to make sustainable real!

I’m thinking of creating another site where this conversation can build…. maybe a more wiki kind of online tool…I don’t have much traffic at this point, but the day will come!!… READ MORE >>

FOUND? Killer Modeling Tool

I happen to talk to one of my partners about my latest blog on the Killer Modeling Tool, and he directed me to “Write this down. EVONY”. So I did, and later last night I went to the web site, remembering the advice he’d given me,   “Don’t let the way they built the game distract you from the platform.  We can get it built however you want it”

Well, here’s my questions…

Can I go to Google Earth and put my own neighborhood into the  playing field?

Can I add stories to existing buildings?

Can I reshape blocks, creating a new cross street in a long block?

Could a stand alone be turned into a row house of three homes, for instance?

 

Wow, I’m running out of hurdles.  Other configurations seem doable.

We can plug in numbers for the number of residents it takes to support a corner grocer, for instance.

Stephen Mouzon was saying the other day, that the usual numbers quoted are 1000-1500 residents, but there is a neighborhood of 350 that is really committed to  shopping at the local store, hang out, and it is thriving apparently. I think it is Waters, near Montgomery Alabama.

1/4 mile radius is the typically quoted “how far Americans will walk to a service, with the exception of 1/2 mile to a transit stop.  I bet those numbers change when gas goes to $4.50/gallon!

Stephen said something else I found awesome.  Five years ago he moved to Miami, into the second most walkable neighborhood in America (South Miami Beach), and has lost 60 pounds.  He showed a map of all his haunts, the work out place, the bookstore, etc.  The map of his world…  that’s what I want this Killer Modeling Tool to be able to do! Download your neighborhood, and see what it takes to make a sustainable lifestyle REAL!

For more of Stephen’s years of experience, go to OriginalGreen…  READ MORE >>

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