Having a strong architectural background, I feel design is the most important part of any development. Through design, not only are you creating a project that seeks to function on a basis to create positive returns, but you also are, in a sense, controlling how people live, work, play, etc. Design is one element to development that can be used to enhance a users life, however conversely, bad design can also have a large impact on the user, which is why it is so vitally important to get right.
In LDEV 667 (Design and Development Economy) a large portion of the course is centered around understanding good design techniques and how different elements of design play a large role in the user’s experience of the project. This learning was heavily facilitated through the use of the textbook in the course, Urban Design and the Bottom Line by Dennis Jerke. The book lays out the fundamentals of developmental design of the user’s perception of the space through the use of the five senses. It also speaks on perception as being of more value to a developer than even potential monetary returns. Given that people see value in their own way, the design of a project should aim to satisfy the user to the fullest extent, and in doing so, the perceived value of the development will be much higher, also leading to higher returns for the developer. The book speaks extensively about creating a sense of place, which should be true of any design, and I can attest that is equally important in architectural design. Any project should aim to create a sense of importance and of community, regardless of the conditions. In doing so, a project is bound to be more successful overall. Attached below is an analysis of the book and design in the practice. (See File 1)
As a summation of the design fundamentals learned throughout my years of architectural education and the MLPD program, LDEV 688 (Design and Development Economy II - Capstone), pulls together all the knowledge acquired when tasked to create a mixed-use development as part of a downtown revitalization project in a small Northeast Texas town. This project aims to create a new community center that combines retail, educational facilities, restaurants, recreation, and flexible space, all while maintaining the small town charm of the surrounding area. Through the use of natural elements of planted space and water, and the built elements of the amenities, this project utilizes the fundamentals learned in LDEV 667 to create a development that will hopefully have a high perceived value to the user and in return be a success for the development team. The site plan for the ongoing project is attached at below. (See File 2)