By: Josh West
With a mild, year round climate and miles of beaches and waterways, Charleston, South As urban populations continue to grow, communities will face challenges. Cities have been confronted primarily with two main challenges; residential housing and land use inefficiency. With the increase of Planned Community developments, these challenges can be resolved and the amount of unfinished developments can be dwindled to none. A planned community development promotes smart growth principles by encouraging the efficient use of land, public facilities and services in areas that are sustainably developed. This development is then intended to create a community environment enhanced by a mixture of residential, commercial, and institutional uses to provide a stable community. By pushing this type of development, it can improve the growth of the community and enhance the overall vitality. Planned communities provide opportunities for cities to expand their neighborhoods and create greater unity within their city and surrounding areas. In his writing, “Core Form and Art Form,” Kenneth Frampton begins to discuss the simple knot. He describes the knot as an essential work of art, serving as the joint, joining two pieces of either same or different material, creating a connection. In this case, each strand of the string resembles one of the challenges a community will encounter. By implementing a planned community development into an area, it will tie all the strings together, forming a knot. This connection will create greater densities in and around the city, achieving a balance between greater job opportunities and more housing developments.
Carolina is becoming a new destination of choice. Known for its rich history and well preserved architecture, the City of Charleston has become one of the most popular cities to move to. New census estimated the Charleston area was the 12th fastest growing metropolitan area in the nation due to people of all ages moving there. As an increase in population growth, the desire to design planned communities has grown exponentially with all of the benefits emerging from it. By improving the lack of residential housing and land use challenges, it will help the city of Charleston maximize population growth and complement the downtown area.
This thesis proposes a Planned Community Development just outside of downtown Charleston, South Carolina. Along the Ashley River, approximately seven miles from the Atlantic Ocean, this 182 acre site is the first thing visitors see when they are entering the city. Due to its location, this site has strong potential to connect with downtown and create a pedestrian oriented community. Creating more housing outside of the downtown area for incoming residents, this planned development will bring new life to the city.