Master Planned Communities

Great communities are no accident. They are the result of careful and thoughtful planning combined with sustained and concerted action by community leaders in order to realize a community’s full potential. The most successful communities utilize local resources in order to promote economic opportunities, attract new businesses while retaining existing ones, and to ensure overall improvements in a sustainable manner. The best communities integrate the physical (roads, utilities, etc.) with the social (recreational, civic opportunities), while maintaining a sound and viable economic base.

S&ME professionals can develop forward-thinking, long-term strategies for communities to protect vital community assets and restore existing natural resources while providing a framework for future development. S&ME offers a wide variety of planning and design services that consider the ecological, social, and economic benefits such as maintenance of the natural landscape, increased recreational opportunities, and a better connection to nature and sense of place.

Identifying and protecting interconnected open spaces systems can decrease the costs of existing public infrastructure, including the costs for stormwater management and water treatment systems. Investing in a number of sustainable designs such as green infrastructure can often be more cost effective than conventional public works projects. Through the smart and innovative use of rain gardens and bioretention systems, parking lot island infiltration areas, bioswales, constructed wetlands, and detention ponds, S&ME professionals apply an integrated approach to create a single sustainable network. The benefits of such an approach include:

  • Integration of land use and growth management activities in a single, comprehensive approach
  • Ensuring that both green space and development are placed where most needed and most appropriate
  • Identifying opportunities for the restoration and enhancement of existing open spaces;
  • Enabling conservation practices and land use development to be planned in harmony, not in opposition 

Traditional Neighborhood Development (TND)

The basic principles of TND reflect the timeless neighborhood patterns and walkable environments, historic Charleston and Savannah and the newer communities of Seaside, Baldwin Park, Celebration, Watercolor, Birkdale Village, and Westhaven. We have planned and designed multiple communities based upon neo-traditional principles while integrating into each community the developer’s unique vision for their respective property.  While the principles of TND remain a constant – neighborhoods built around an identifiable center, shared common open spaces located within the grid, axial vistas to community focal elements including parks, plazas, or central squares, interconnected streets, walkability to neighborhood services, and integration of varied housing styles. S&ME’s interpretation of these values on to the land becomes unique with each community. We specialize at integrating the various design professions to arrive at a final master plan that blends planning, creativity, engineering functionality, and affordable development solutions.