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Today’s All About Real Estate guest on Atlanta Real Estate Forum Radio is Bill Tunnell, founding principal with Tunnell Spangler Walsh. A small firm based in Midtown, TSW focuses on planning, architecture and landscape architecture, and it has worked on a variety of different project types, including parks, sports facilities and more.

At TSW, the focus is on community design and working with the building blocks that create our communities. This focus is what the New Urbanism movement is all about, which is a guiding principle for all TSW projects.

New Urbanism started as a movement about 30 years ago, and it is very important in the evolution of how communities are built today. New Urbanism principles are essentially an operating system for how we put together the human environment, also known as the art of town building or place-making. A concept that was mostly forgotten after World War II and the advance of the automobile, this method of building creates the diverse, walkable mixed-use developments that are once again in high demand.

Today, community and town planning is undergoing a rebirth as people think differently about how they want to grow. A large percentage of the market is moving toward this walkable lifestyle, and it is becoming easier and more prevalent to live this way thanks to the popularity of New Urbanism. The two major audiences that real estate developers are focusing on are Millennials and empty nesters, large populations that essentially want the same thing: these walkable, compact communities created using New Urbanism principles that feature activity centers and smaller homes.

Perhaps one of the most popular examples of New Urbanism is Seaside, the Florida beach town made famous in “The Truman Show” starring Jim Carrey. While this is not a primary residence community, many of the concepts and principles embraced by New Urbanism are present and can also be applied to rural, urban and revitalization projects.

Locally, downtown Woodstock’s revitalization project is the one that TSW is most frequently asked about. Using the concept that these old town centers were created for a reason, the company has helped to re-popularize historic downtowns throughout metro Atlanta, including Duluth, Lawrenceville, Suwanee, Doraville and more.

Because TSW handles both the creation of a community concept through planning and the actual development of the community with architects and landscape architects, it understands the process from both ends and handles projects differently than most firms. The experts at TSW know that every process is unique and approaches each one differently. Sometimes projects are born out of a government or community group who wants to create a master plan, while other projects are driven by developers who want to apply New Urbanism ideas independently of a community or town center.

No matter where New Urbanism principles are applied, the popularity of them cannot be denied in today’s real estate market. To learn more about New Urbanism and TSW, listen to the full podcast above. Then, visit www.tsw-design.com to see a portfolio of the firm’s many projects.


Atlanta Real Estate Forum Radio’s “All About Real Estate” segment airs on Fridays and highlights the movers and shakers in the Atlanta real estate industry – the home builders, developers, Realtors and suppliers working to provide the American dream for Atlantans. For more information on how you can be featured as a guest, contact 770-383-3360 or via the contact form on this site.

Please download and subscribe to all of the Atlanta Real Estate Forum Radio podcasts on iTunes. If you like this week’s show, be sure to rate it.


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