Remaking a Suburb into as Small Business Hub

Levittown is the quintessential American suburb. A new proposal seeks to reinvent it as a hub for small businesses.

1 minute read

April 28, 2011, 9:00 AM PDT

By Nate Berg


This piece from Fast Co. Design looks at this idea and how it could work in Levittown and suburbs throughout the U.S.

"When Droog and Diller + Scofidio set out to re-imagine the American suburb -- specifically Levittown, the most pre-fab of them all -- the results were as surreal as you might expect: a "domesticity museum" charged with preserving a dying way of life; a backyard farm with a take-out window, even an "Attention Clinic" catering to all your narcissistic needs.

There were just a few of the homes on display as part of "Open House 2011," a collaboration between Droog Lab -- an offshoot of the Dutch design collective -- and the architects of Diller Scofidio + Renfro aimed at reimagining the American suburb as a hive of bottom-up entrepreneurial activity, no new buildings or infrastructure required. By running businesses out of their homes, suburbanites could simulate New York City's thriving informal service sector of dog walkers, take-out deliverymen, dry cleaners, nail salons, and livery cabs which provide New Yorkers with mobility-on-demand or laundry-on-demand, rather than requiring they own cars and washing machine -- the classic suburban model."

Tuesday, April 26, 2011 in Fast Co. Design

Green rapid transit bus pulled into station in dedicated lane.

Indiana Once Again Considering Ban on Dedicated Transit Lanes

The proposed legislation would impact the construction of planned IndyGo Blue Line, the third phase of the city’s bus rapid transit system.

February 25, 2024 - Fox 59

Aerial view of New York City architecture with augmented reality visualization, blue digital holograms over buildings and skyscrapers

4 Ways to Use AI in Urban Planning and City Design

With the ability to predict trends, engage citizens, enhance resource allocation, and guide decision-making, artificial intelligence has the potential to serve as planners’ very own multi-tool.

February 20, 2024 - ArchDaily

View from shore of Sepulveda Basin water catchment basin with marsh plants along shore.

LA’s ‘Spongy’ Infrastructure Captured Almost 9 Billion Gallons of Water

The city is turning away from stormwater management practices that shuttle water to the ocean, building infrastructure that collects and directs it underground instead.

February 25, 2024 - Wired

Street view of 4th Avenue, a commercial street of shops and restaurants through the city center of downtown Seattle, Washington.

Study: Seattle Vision Zero Projects Not Bad for Business

An analysis of seven road safety project sites showed no negative economic impact on surrounding businesses.

10 minutes ago - UW News

Black-and-white photo of street with old black model T and brick building on the corner.

The History of Racial Zoning and Housing Discrimination in the US

More than a century of discriminatory housing policy divided cities and contributed to the racial wealth gap and other social and economic inequities.

1 hour ago - Urban Land Magazine

Aerial view of Vail, Colorado in winter with multi-story buildings in foregorund and snowy mountains in background.

Opinion: Resort Towns Must Take Action to Keep Housing Affordable

The workers that keep many popular tourist destinations running find it more difficult to find affordable housing near their jobs as more remote workers move to scenic resort areas.

2 hours ago - Governing

Senior Planner

Heyer Gruel Associates

Regional Transportation Planner

Crater Planning District Commission

Senior Planner- Long range

Prince William County Planning Office

Urban Design for Planners 1: Software Tools

This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.

Planning for Universal Design

Learn the tools for implementing Universal Design in planning regulations.