Future Planning.Lately, I have been thinking a lot about what's ahead for us in the real estate industry. ..say in 2010. ..and researching, gathering data, raising my antennae...getting familiar with market demand statistics
I am seeking a "heads-up" on promising trends-such as:
1. trend toward "human scale" design
2.trend toward sustainable development
3.trend toward environmentally-sensitive communities
4.trend toward less size with more bling-bling
Some of you may know that #1-4 + are near and dear to my heart.
But what you might not know,
and what I certainly didn't expect when I started my sleuthing for the future,
was that this exercise would lead me actually to redefine how I see properties.
WHAT we see as a REALTORS® redefines HOW we see a property,
and that opens the way to big possibilities for all concerned.
So with the year 2010 in mind, I am off to explore the trail that leads to a fresh look at what I see and how I see it...with an added incentive. This could be a real plus not only for me, but for my investor-clients.
- I'm looking for examples of the trend toward "human scale" design ......
What if I see properties in terms of human scale? How will that affect my approach to that property? Today, I wander down the streets of a neighborhood in the process of gentrification right here in Asheville.
This area has responded to human needs.There's a neighborhood grocery store, and not far away, an espresso café, and not far from that, the most attractive park. I see families there all the time. If I drive down any of the streets in this neighborhood, I see people out enjoying the company of their neighbors, chatting, stopping by to observe the work being done on a 1920s Craftsman Bungalow, ambling down the sidewalks with kids and dogs in tow. (more on sidewalks another day) ....
Lots of talking goes on in this neighborhood.
It occurs to me that architects sometimes forget about who is going to be in and around what they design. They just seem to forget! They reduce buildings to objects. But what about the design/space requirements of the human beings who are to occupy and use the space? I have seen some urban spaces that actually are hostile to humans! The spaces leave me cold. I feel alienated and want to rush past such spaces.
Seems to me that thoughtful urban design of spaces and buildings should be inviting. They could encourage us to stay for a while. They could include gathering places for people to conduct whatever business or social activity is important during their stay. They could even create these spaces and buildings where people want to congregate. ..like this design found at the Asheville Design Center. My pals over there say that the "Center's first project will be to work with the community, the North Carolina Department of Transportation, and local governments on the planned I-26 realignment in order to help plan and facilitate an attractive new bridge across the French Broad River and a sustainable use of the land that is affected by the roadway. " Talk about trends toward "human scale" design.
As I end my journey into this neighborhood, I realize that if there are no people around, the space has most likely failed. If there are many people around then the space has probably succeeded.
So where can the people (my clients) come to live, or visit or work or socialize? Where do I like to hang out? What is it that makes this space or building a place where I want to spend time? What characteristics give me that welcoming feeling? ... a cozy place? ... an open space? And, bottom line....
what do the people need..beside each other?
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