Mixed-use developments have existed in our big cities for some time now, but there is a new trend to renovate building complexes in existing urban areas and build new projects in suburban areas that resemble these older highly evolved gathering places. The appeal of Mixed-use communities is growing with generations of people changing their thoughts about what an ideal neighborhood can be. Empty nesters are moving to urban cores in search of convenience, while younger generations want an experiential blend of amenities nearby where they can afford to live.
The desire for a “mix” of amenities at an all-in-one destination is the crux of these facilities and meeting their construction demands can be complicated. The complication comes from a collision of disparate tenants existing in the same facility all requiring different support needs. Transportation, retail, restaurants, grocery, entertainment, housing, among others, each have different demands for power, water, sanitation and other services. The desire is to integrate food and beverage tenants, and entertainment venues, with retail stores to create broad appeal. And, the facility will be required to change its venues to remain fresh as tenants come and go. This phenomenon is not unlike staging plays where each play’s production relies on different scenery to create a mood, or sense of place, using the same basic infrastructure to support it (the stage itself).
Having a stage, or building infrastructure, that incorporates different tenant types within proximity to each other, like found in these Mixed-use developments, is unlike regional malls, or strip centers, where the initial intent was to segregated food and beverage away from retail and entertainment within the facility or site. MK Design Group Inc. recognizes the challenge for owners, developers and architects is to ensure the creation of structures of a Mixed-use community have the flexibility to incorporate all elements a potential tenant may want wherever needed in the facility.
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