I’ve blogged before about What Makes a Home Green?, including the importance of a green community, which I defined as one which has “ample neighbouring parks, as well as pedestrian-friendly streets and enough nearby resources to allow you to reduce car usage.” I’ve also blogged about the principles of New Urbanism before, as our award-winning community Avonlea has been recognized several times as the “Places to Grow” Community of the Year, an award which is based on Ontario’s Places to Grow Act. Part of the Places to Grow Act is about building complete, efficient communities (smart growth), and so the principles of New Urbanism come into play. New Urbanism is a design movement that we at Mason Homes support and try to build towards. The principles of New Urbanism help us create sustainable communities that provide a better quality of life for you and your family.
Walkability is one of the main features of new urbanism, and narrower streets are a part of this. (This article talks about how narrower roads often work better than wide ones.) For one, narrower roads force cars to drive slower, which makes walking safer. Other things that contribute to a community’s walkability are having buildings close to the street, having tree-lined streets, on-street parking, hidden parking lots, and rear lane garages.
By promoting walkability and building narrower streets, among other things, we build communities that are family-friendly and that encourage families to stroll through their community without worry or to let their kids go biking unsupervised. Just one of the ways we strive to make your life better and greener!