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Redefining Suburbia

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An Equity Problem

Despite our love for cities, we cannot forget about the suburbs. The suburbs have been always been home to a massive population that not only supports our cities but themselves. More of our nation's poor are being driven to the suburbs as urban housing prices rise. How might we encourage human connection, vitality and culture in the suburbs - not sameness, conformity or convention?

home screen image credit: Alex MacLean
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Research

Our commitment to systems-thinking demands us to investigate root causes. With this in mind, our interview questions for users are shaped by some foundational questions that we ask ourselves as a team.

  • How can we prioritize humans over cars in the suburbs?
  • Can preferences for size and space compete with walkability?
  • When will the sense of human-scaled vitality/activity outweigh the comfort of one's own vehicle?
  • How can we make the business opportunity irresistible to companies looking to invest?
  • How can we make the change most seamless for residents? How can we reward residents for coping with the change?

Context

The suburbs were designed for the car, not the human being. As a result, the physical development of suburban commercial areas bear a striking resemblance across the country. When the idea of "walking around" is unheard of in the suburbs, something needs to change.

typical corridor illustrations

Simple shifts can encourage suburban development that's less isolating, less car-dependent, and values human dignity. Instead of traffic being a measure of vitality, the visible measurement is human activity.

systems diagram

We are currently in the Research Phase of this project.

Please contact us about how to get involved.