Sprawl vs. Traditional Neighborhoods


Sprawl can be defined as the urbanized areas on the edge of a town or city that have developed as a result of unplanned and unchecked expansion. A traditional neighborhood is almost the exact opposite. Traditional neighborhoods are planned around certain aspect of a city.

Sprawl neighborhoods and traditional neighborhoods differ in many ways. Sprawl communities display segregated land use, congested roadways, and inefficient resource use. As far as traffic and transportation is concerned. Sprawl neighborhoods are not pedestrian friendly. Most people in sprawl neighborhoods drive because transportation is limited if at all available. Social and civic facilities are an afterthought in sprawl communities. In many cases, neighbors do not communicate and are not as open and friendly. Low Density developments pave over open space and have large infrastructure systems requiring large development blueprints.

Traditional neighborhoods have mixed, multi generational, and friendly communities. Social and civic facilities are planned within the town and are designed to encourage walking to reduce car trips. Almost everything in the community is within walking distance to schools and parks; making the community highly pedestrian friendly. Traditional neighborhoods contain smaller neighborhoods making it highly accessible to interact with neighbors and the community. Traditional neighborhoods have efficient, small- scale infrastructure that requires a small urban footprint on the environment and have clustered higher density communities.

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