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s WA’s urban sprawl continues its march, forward-thinking
architects, developers and local governments are realising that the
answer to housing the ever-growing population may lie closer to
the city – with vibrant and inviting mixed-use developments that
successfully combine living with shopping, working and entertaining.
Mixed-use design is defined as a development that combines two or more
land uses, either within a single building or multiple buildings of different
uses within a distinct development site. The benefits are numerous.
“Mixed-use developments are essential for the successful, sustainable
development of WA,” explains James Christou, founder and managing
director of Christou Design Group, which worked on the Claremont Quarter
development. “They are the answer to our connectivity problems, isolation
problems, transportation problems and urban-sprawl problems.”
Edwin Bollig, senior architect and managing director of Bollig Design
Group, agrees. “As an option – and that is not to say it suits everyone –
the mixed-use environments and inner-city living options are a viable
alternative, whether they are for singles, couples, empty nesters or young
families. The idea of living close to work, retail, entertainment and public
transport is a great option and adds to the vibrancy of a city.”
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS?
Financial return For investors and developers, it’s been shown mixed-use
can result in higher financial returns, as well as helping to spread the risk and
generate partnerships between complementary tenants. It’s even believed
mixed-use developments have quicker take-up of residential and commercial
tenancies due to tenants living and working within the same building. “The
economics of including residential accommodation within areas of retail and
commercial creates an immediate support base for local business,” says Edwin.
“The returns on investment for the developer may be improved and risks
diversified by having multiple uses with increased densities and plot ratios.”
Rejuvenating cities From a community point of view, mixed-use
developments can rejuvenate a location, encouraging people to be out after
TOP Developments, such as Claremont Quarter, are “essential for the successful, sustainable
development of WA”, says James Christou, whose company conceived the design. ABOVE Courtyard
residences at Claremont Quarter. OPPOSITE The One40William project, designed by Hassell.
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