Archive for April, 2011

Dallas Communities By Design

April 13, 2011

Dallas Communities By Design, or CxD, is represented by a small group of active practitioners and AIA members who are working to promote good planning and design within the City of Dallas and surrounding region.  The group has participated in planning charrettes, supported other firms’ planning efforts, engaged speakers at the Dallas Center for Architecture (DCFA) and is presently working on assessing major developments in the area using the AIA’s 10 Principles for Livable Communities.

The 10 Principles are listed here and can be accessed at the Center for Communities by Design and at the address below:

1. Design on a Human Scale
Compact, pedestrian-friendly communities allow residents to walk to shops, services, cultural resources, and jobs and can reduce traffic congestion and benefit people’s health.

2. Provide Choices
People want variety in housing, shopping, recreation, transportation, and employment. Variety creates lively neighborhoods and accommodates residents in different stages of their lives.

3. Encourage Mixed-Use Development
Integrating different land uses and varied building types creates vibrant, pedestrian-friendly and diverse communities.

4. Preserve Urban Centers
Restoring, revitalizing, and infilling urban centers takes advantage of existing streets, services and buildings and avoids the need for new infrastructure. This helps to curb sprawl and promote stability for city neighborhoods.

5. Vary Transportation Options
Giving people the option of walking, biking and using public transit, in addition to driving, reduces traffic congestion, protects the environment and encourages physical activity.

6. Build Vibrant Public Spaces
Citizens need welcoming, well-defined public places to stimulate face-to-face interaction, collectively celebrate and mourn, encourage civic participation, admire public art, and gather for public events.

7. Create a Neighborhood Identity
A “sense of place” gives neighborhoods a unique character, enhances the walking environment, and creates pride in the community.

8. Protect Environmental Resources
A well-designed balance of nature and development preserves natural systems, protects waterways from pollution, reduces air pollution, and protects property values.

9. Conserve Landscapes
Open space, farms, and wildlife habitat are essential for environmental, recreational, and cultural reasons.

10. Design Matters
Design excellence is the foundation of successful and healthy communities.

The full document with graphics can be viewed at:

The Center for Communities By Design is located at: Center for Communities by Design.

The CxD committee members’ work will be posted on their website within the next few months: