Village of Providence

Location: Huntsville, Alabama, USA
Project Categories: UrbanismCodes
Year Started: 2002
Status: Built
Size: 275 acres

As a national leader in aeronautics, Huntsville experienced a great surge of growth in the second half of the twentieth century. However, that growth came in the form of suburban-style development, with housing subdivisions, office parks, and shopping centers — a model that is increasingly unable to deliver the quality of life desired by residents. As the first traditional neighborhood development to be built in the city in half a century, the Village of Providence seeks to reverse the trend of anonymous suburbia and bring back vibrant, pedestrian-friendly communities. The Village is ideally located just north of a large employment center (Cummings Research Park) and within an easy drive of downtown Huntsville. The 275-acre site is crossed by two attractive waterways, Indian Creek and Dry Creek, whose floodplains form a natural greenway through the plan. The plan takes advantage of other natural features, highlighting the dramatic bluff overlooking Indian Creek and terminating streets on the greenways. A mixed-use town center is located around a short stretch of Indian Creek Road, which forms the main street of the village. It is planned for approximately 80,000 sf of retail, 180,000 sf of commercial/office space, a hotel with a wellness center, a mid-size cinema, and a waterfront restaurant. One or two stories of apartments or offices are located above ground-floor shops. A full range of housing types is included in the plan, with the highest density types placed closest to the town center. Smaller, neighborhood-scaled centers are distributed throughout the plan so that all residents are within a 5-minute walk of a community gathering place as well as retail and entertainment opportunities. Last but not least, a new K-8 public school and an expanded church are prominently located in the master plan.

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