Policy 1: ENCOURAGE NEW DEVELOPMENT TO BE MORE CLUSTERED
IN PORTIONS OF THE REGION WHERE SUCH OPPORTUNITIES EXIST
This new development is in-fill housing that utilizes
previously developed land within an established neighborhood.
Policy 2: STRENGTHEN AND ENHANCE THE RESIDENTIAL AND
MIXED USE CHARACTER OF THE CENTRAL BUSINESS DISTRICT AND
CITY AND TOWN CENTERS
The vitality of the nearby urban center of Decatur and
its central business district is enhanced by the presence
of this project.
Policy 3: STRENGTHEN AND ENHANCE THE RESIDENTIAL AND
MIXED-USE CHARACTER OF EXISTING AND EMERGING ACTIVITY
Several nearby commercial nodes, within walking distance
on Mclendon and Dekalb Ave, are enhanced by the presence
of this development.
Policy 4 ENCOURAGE MIXED-USE REDEVELOPMENT OF CORRIDORS
WHERE PUBLIC SERVICES ARE CURRENTLY AVAILABLE
Public services are currently available in the area.
Policy 5 ENCOURAGE TRANSIT-ORIENTED DEVELOPMENT
A MARTA train station is within 1/2 mile walking distance.
Policy 6 SUPPORT THE PRESERVATION OF STABLE, SINGLE-FAMILY
This development is integrated into the existing residential
neighborhood of Lake Claire with consistent architectural
styles and lot layouts that reflect the existing neighborhood.
Policy 7 ENCOURAGE FOCUSED INFILL AND REDEVELOPMENT WHERE
ACCEPTABLE TO COMMUNITIES
A rezoning process that included community participation
focuses growth away from sensitive riparian environments.
Policy 8 ENCOURAGE MIXED-USE DEVELOPMENT
This development includes a mix of live/work space in
a focused area on the street beneath residential housing.
Policy 9 ENCOURAGE TRADITIONAL NEIGHBORHOOD DEVELOPMENTS
This development follows a traditional neighborhood pattern
by creating narrow streets with pedestrian access enhanced
by street trees and lighting, rear lot automobile access
and interesting places to go within the development such
as park space and commercial activity.
Policy 10 PROTECT ENVIRONMENTALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
Development on this project is focused away from a sensitive
stream and protects that area with a conservation easement.
Best Land Use Practices:
Practice 1 Keep vehicle miles of travel (VMT) below the
area average. Infill developments are the best at accomplishing
this. The more remote a development the more self contained
it must be to stay below the area average VMT.
This development reduces VMT by both creating in-fill
housing in an in town neighborhood with existing commercial
nodes and integrating destinations in the community in
the form of live/work space.
Practice 2 Contribute to the area’s jobs-housing
balance. Strive for a job-housing balance with a three
to five mile area around a development site.
The job-housing balance in the Lake Claire area is improved
by this project by creating live/work uses in an area
that would otherwise consist of and be surrounded by single-family
residential housing. Further the project is within 5 miles
of the Atlanta Central Business District and three miles
of the Decatur Central Business District.
Practice 3 Mix land uses at the finest grain the market
will bear and include civic uses in the mix.
Land use is mixed to the finest grain of housing above
work space, and civic use is included as park space.
Practice 4 Develop in clusters and keep the clusters
small. This will result in more open space preservation.
This development preserves open space by clustering development.
Practice 5 Place higher-density housing near commercial
centers, transit lines and parks. This will enable more
walking, biking and transit use.
Housing is focused into a dense center above live/work
activities, adjacent to a transit corridor and connected
by pedestrian paths to the surrounding neighborhood.
Practice 6 Phase convenience shopping and recreational
opportunities to keep pace with housing. These are valued
amenities and translate into less external travel by residents
if located conveniently to housing.
A park space and a pedestrian plaza are incorporated in
Practice 7 Make subdivisions into neighborhoods with
well-defined centers and edges. This is traditional development.
The single-family housing surrounding the live/work lofts
create an edge and center in this neighborhood.
Practice 10 Make shopping centers and business parks
into all-purpose activity centers. Suburban shopping centers
and their environs could be improved by mixing uses and
designing them with the pedestrian amenities of downtowns.
The live/work uses integrated into this development face
a pedestrian friendly streetscape.
Practice 11 Tame auto-oriented land uses, or at least
separate them from pedestrian-oriented uses. Relegate
“big box” stores to areas where they will
do the least harm to the community fabric.
Many of the housing units utilize rear lot automobile
access, which separates the automobile use from the pedestrian
space and reduces curb cuts.
Best Transportation Practices
Practice 1 Design the street network with multiple connections
and relatively direct routes.
The previous development had two dead end entrances, and
this development connects those entrances. A connection
limited to pedestrian uses is provided through the sensitive
portion of the site.
Practice 2 Space through-streets no more than a half
mile apart, or the equivalent route density in a curvilinear
A network of closely spaced streets and alleys has been
established to allow separated auto and pedestrian access
to the clustered housing. This development has multiple
connections to major collector roads.
Practice 3 Use traffic-calming measures liberally. Use
short streets, sharp curves, center islands, traffic circles,
textured pavements, speed bumps and raised crosswalks.
Practice 4 Keep speeds on local streets down to 20 mph.
Narrow short streets, pedestrian connections, center islands
and on-street parking encourage slow traffic speeds.
Practice 9 Provide networks for pedestrians and bicyclists
as good as the network for motorists.
Practice 10 Provide pedestrians and bicyclists with shortcuts
and alternatives to travel along high-volume streets.
Pedestrian connections through the greenspace are better
than the auto access and allow connections to adjacent
residential areas. Convenient bicycle routes connect to
the Atlanta-Stone Mountain bicycle path.
Best Environmental Practices
Practice 2 Channel development into areas that are already
The majority of the site had been disturbed by a 90 unit
obsolete apartment complex. Buildings in the previous
development were subject to flooding. These areas were
returned to natural conditions.
Practice 3 Preserve patches of high-quality habitat,
as large and circular as possible, feathered at the edges
and connected by wildlife corridors. Stream corridors
offer great potential.
The woodland habitat is preserved by a conservation easement
with riparian wildlife corridors extending along the drainages.
Practice 4 Design around significant wetlands.
Upland springs were protected and vegetation reestablished.
A new spring discovered during construction (with the
return of normal rain fall) has been protected with a
design that creates an upland bog.
Practice 5 Establish upland buffers around all retained
wetlands and natural water bodies.
Detention ponds were designed with water quality Best
Management Practices and replanted with trees to extend
the forest cover of the riparian areas.
Practice 6 Preserve significant uplands, too.
This project preserves 2.5 acres that includes a stream
and adjoining mature woodland. New development is shifted
away from this area towards existing housing. Formal greenspace
integrated into the new development is also designed to
be visually connected to the preservation area.
Practice 7: Restore and enhance ecological functions
damaged by prior site activities.
The adjacent stream bank will be stabilized and returned
to a natural condition, after the removal of exotic invasive
Practice 8: Detain runoff with open, natural drainage
systems. The more natural the system the more valuable
it will be for wildlife and water quality.
Open swales were utilized wherever possible on this steep
site. Eroded swales were replanted with matting and grasses
and check dams were installed to improve stability and
water quality. Storm water run-off from off of the site
is routed through the detention pond for additional water
Practice 9: Design man-made lakes and stormwater ponds
for maximum environmental value. Recreation, stormwater
management, wildlife habitat and others.
Two detention ponds separate the runoff from impervious
surfaces in the developed area from the preserved green
space in order to maintain water quality in the adjacent
stream. One of these detention ponds will be integrated
into the pedestrian path network as a natural pond feature.
Best Housing Practices
Practice 1 Offer “life cycle” housing. Providing
integrated housing for every part of the “life cycle”.
The range of housing types in this development can accommodate
every part of the “life cycle”, from young
singles in lofts and garage apartments, to starter families
in small single family or town homes, though retirees
in loft units or basement apartments.
Practice 2 Achieve an average net residential density
of six to seven units per acre without the appearance
of crowding. Cluster housing to achieve open space.
This development achieves a gross density of 7 units per
acre, and a net density of 8.7 units per acre, while giving
the appearance of a historic single-family neighborhood
and preserving a 2.65 acre woodland and stream area.
Practice 3: Use cost-effective site development and construction
practices. Small frontages and setbacks; rolled curbs
or no curbs; shared driveways.
Many of the lots in this development utilize shared drives
and rear alleys to reduce impervious cover. By clustering
units on the site the cost of infrastructure and utilities
Practice 4: Design of energy-saving features. Natural
shading and solar access.
All of the single-family homes in this development have
been built to the Earth Craft standard of construction.
Practice 5 Supply affordable single-family homes for
Housing square footage and lot sizes of the singe family
housing and attached units vary to create smaller affordable
units for moderate-income households.
Practice 6 Supply affordable multi-family and accessory
housing for low-income households.
In addition to the multi-family housing many of the single
family detached units include garage and basement rental
units to accommodate low-income housing needs.
Practice 8 Mix housing to the extent the market will
Housing types are mixed to range from multifamily lofts
up to city homes on small lots. Sales have been brisk
thanks to the variety of options available.