Mixed use learning Point

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Vitality is one measure of the success of urban areas. It is also one condition for a successful mixed and sustainable community. The mix of uses that form in the structures of settlements, in buildings, blocks, streets and neighbourhoods influence vitality.

Understanding the conditions that enable uses to mix, and the mix of uses to be successful is important. This includes considerations of urban structure, market, dealmaking, planning and maintenance. It includes all potential uses, from industrial to residential, mixed vertically [within a building] and horizontally [along streets and in neighbourhoods]. Reports like ‘Industry in the City’ for the London Development Agency demonstrate that mixed use can be about more than residential over shops at ground floor level.

The ‘Barriers to Mixed Use’ research undertaken by Douglas Wheeler Associates for Scottish Government identified a number of challenges to making mixed use happen. On the basis of the findings of this research, A+DS with Douglas Wheeler Associates have been exploring creative opportunities to overcome these barriers as part of the Scottish Centre for Regeneration Mixed Community Learning Network.

This work has engaged a range of practitioners and policymakers invovled in mixed use development in Scotland. The first workshop focuses on mixed use at the scale of the block and the neighbourhood. The output from this session is available for download here.

There will be two follow up sessions one which looks in more detail at a regeneration area in Glasgow, and a study trip to look at examples of mixed commercial use, mixed facilities in the public estate and mixed tenure. A summary report of lessons learned will be also produced in summer 2011.

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