There are painters who
transform a sun into a yellow
spot but there are others, who with their art and
intelligence transform a yellow spot into a sun.
— Pablo Picasso
Alex Kimball founded a professional firm that
of the most important trends in planning and architecture
today, one that is dedicated to refined concepts of
creating the new urban village, town centers and
main streets where people gather.
The strength of this group is their depth
of experience in the creation of places where people gather, the
enhancement of existing environments, the necessity
of viable projects and a committment to society.
This work, done with a strong core of community
and respected developers, takes the traditional concepts of "community" and "social places" and orchestrates them in
order to create energy centers that address design
from a holistic viewpoint.
We were born to unite with our fellow men,
and to join in community with the human race.
Community (comm-mu-ni-ty) noun.
1. A group of people having common interests.
2. Sharing, participation, fellowship.
The advantage of building "community"
Most of us have experienced situations that point very directly to the need for community in our lives. Why is this so? As people have moved away from their family roots, direct connections with lifelong interaction groups have been severed or significantly altered and the benefits of these contacts have been lost. These connections enrich our lives at enumerable levels, from simple visual contact (assuring us that we are not alone) through the very personal (social outlets and services such as a family doctor). Electronic culture has further removed many of our activities from the realm of direct personal contact (email, videos, electronic shopping, & chat rooms) further expanding the void. As a result, there is an ever expanding need for ways of creating environments that support people with common interests in sharing, participation and fellowship.
There are many ways that "community" can be supported, and there are distinct advantages to doing so.
As planners and architects, our objective is to create places that, very simply, attract people. These are places that have distinct qualities that entice, feel comfortable and safe, speak to memory, may reflect what we would like to be, and through establishing these qualities, people are attracted, spend time and return. These become perfect environments to foster community.
Why should municipalities, owners,
& developers value creating community?
The advantages are social and financial, both are directly related. Socially, since we are all social animals, communities make us feel that we belong, are a part of something bigger than ourselves, something that is nourishing to us and, in turn, needs to be nourished. As a member, we feel safer and secure, as a result, more comfortable in our lives. Places that have these qualitiies attract people, hold them longer and invite revisits, which leads to distinct advantages for them over those that do not. This is where the financial benefits come in: more people, longer, more often; means more demand, higher property values, increasing rents, greater retails sales, expanded leasing demands and accruing capital value.