HYBRID TO SOCIAL CONDENSER: COMPETING APPROACHES TO MIXED-USE DEVELOPMENT
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In the last two decades, mixed use has taken center stage in urban planning development in the United States. The research frequently cites this development as a model that can address a variety of socioeconomic problems. Also, it has enjoyed a recent surge in popularity in redeveloping cities by providing more affordable housing opportunities, ensuring safety, reducing auto-dependency, and for providing a sense of place and community. However, its affordability, physical design, and outcomes are highly variable. This study is particularly interested in whether and how mixed use affects the socioeconomics configuration of the built environment. This study uses multilevel data from the county level to the zip code level that represents all US neighborhoods. I use different implementation methods of mixed-use development and different cultural and historical backgrounds to examine the data. The study adopts six mixed-use models that present different methodological interactions between socioeconomic spatial metrics and urban forms. These models represent the realistic constraints of urban geometry and of the socioeconomic structure that comprises the charateristics of race, income, accessibility, safety, adjacency, accessibility, environment, and density. This study finds that the built environment produces a rich landscape of information that appears to guide the opportunities for facilities. The analysis shows that mixed-use development may have certain effects on the number of facilities, housing, income, diversity, crime rate, employment, health, and environment. The analysis of this research works in two dimensions. First, urban models (Hybrid and Social Condenser in general and under two categories Metropolis and Neighborhood Community). The second dimension is the urban characteristics (zoning programming, land use mix, streets fabric), socioeconomics variables (Population density, occupied housing, median age, diversity of race, income, and employment rates), and location variation (states, and cities). The results confirm that mixing the facilities in hybrid communities create more jobs opportunities but limit the affordability of housing, social cohesion and the race diversity. But in Social Condenser models, there are more race diversity safety and healthy environment. These results reflect complexity demands more than mixed-use developments, beyond Jane Jacobs' requirements, and beyond the designation of selected mixed-use zones. This study contributes to the study of how mixed-use development models shift because of various social and economic conditions. The findings from this study can inform architects, investors, policymakers, economists, and planners about factors that sustain mixed-use neighborhoods in the United States and beyond. Urban designers will be able to inform how the seemingly necessary act of laying out mixed-use development can affect the socioeconomic structure of a city. Thus, this study is a useful source for more accurate planning ideas than generic abstract theories or slogans.