The Affordability of New Urbanism in Atlanta
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New Urbanism is a burgeoning development pattern in cities across the United States, including Atlanta. The purpose of this research is to determine to what extent New Urbanism has lived up to one of its key principles, that of providing a “range of housing choices to serve people of diverse income levels.” New Urbanism is a previously unseen opportunity for the creation of affordable housing. It provides an opportunity to rethink traditional development patterns, often by rewriting zoning and other restrictions that have resulted in economic segregation and an overall lack of housing sufficiently affordable for all income levels. By explicitly promoting diversity of both place and people New Urbanism provides a context in which small, affordable units can harmoniously juxtapose more expensive housing choices. This study will analyze developments in Metropolitan Atlanta, an area in which New Urbanism is becoming increasingly popular. The goal of this research is first to determine which New Urbanist developments have resulted in the greatest number of affordable units. This will be achieved through an examination of housing prices in several New Urbanist developments in comparison to both metropolitan area median incomes and to immediately surrounding housing prices. New Urbanism counters the common patterns of development since World War II and proposes a new pattern of development in its place. Historical precedents for New Urbanism can be found in the City Beautiful Movement as well as in the writings of Jane Jacobs. “New” Urbanism uses traditional urban forms from the United States and Europe as a model and promotes narrow, pedestrian‐oriented streets, accessible public space, small blocks and neighborhoods containing a mix of land uses. The benefits of this form of urbanism as defined by Jane Jacobs include greater public safety, aesthetic interest, walkability, and an overall greater functionality and efficiency.