Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Community Planning (MCP)


Community Planning and Area Development

First Advisor

Farhad Atash


Conventional suburban design has created sprawl, traffic congestion, and other problems. New urbanists seek to solve these and other problems through the return to design elements found in the early twentieth century American small towns. This research project examines two of the goals of new urbanists: the reduction of auto-dependency while increasing transit use, walking, and biking, and the building of community through architecture, town planning, and design. The study describes the strategies new urbanists propose to achieve these goals, and then examines some reasons why the goals may or may not be attainable. It is concluded that new urbanist techniques should be applied on a case-by-case basis, and that social problems need to be addressed not only through design, but also through public policy. Many of the ideas offered by new urbanists are worthwhile to planners, and recommendations on how to make them work are offered.