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Posted on: August 24, 2021

Norfolk Architectural Review Board Provides Feedback on Preliminary Community Design

NORFOLK, VA – More than three years of resident and community input has resulted in a neighborhood plan that connects residents and provides for healthy living.  Today, the Norfolk Architectural Review Board gave their feedback on the preliminary design for the new family style housing for the St. Paul’s area.   The initial design serves as a starting point.  Multiple community surveys are collecting input on the road network, housing styles and resilient stormwater park that will further fine tune the redevelopment plans. 

The initial design for the neighborhood began with a week-long design process at the Basilica of St. Mary’s in July of 2018, and resident feedback has continued ever since.

The design team had a chance to engage with over 150 Tidewater Gardens residents at the July 2021 “People First Block Party”.  Parents, teenagers, and kids gave their input about what they wanted to see in their neighborhood.  Here’s what they had to say about a few topics:

  • Housing: 
    • Residents want bright, colorful buildings that are a mix of modern and traditional and “don’t look like office buildings”
    • “Lots of porches and balconies”
    • “Brick buildings that feel permanent and secure”
    • “Would like to see future home ownership options”
  • Community Amenities:
    • Computer labs, music classes, yoga, and gardening
    • Park spaces and playgrounds
    • Walking/bike trails

Based on this feedback, the following design goals were set, and the preliminary plans were developed for public feedback.

Design Goals:

  1. Visionary:         Embody the aspirational future of the City of Norfolk and the St. Paul’s residents
  2. Sustainable:    Transformational design that sets a precedent for the most sustainable neighborhood in the City
  3. Comfortable Streetscapes: Every street is designed for people first, providing slow streets that are safe, beautiful, and comfortable
  4. Contemporary Compatible: Architecture responds directly to resident’s desire for a unique, new place that seamlessly blends with a historic city
  5. Family-Centric Design: Every building and block supports the needs of families
  6. Amenity-Packed: Every block has a unique amenity that gives back to the community
  7. Diverse Neighborhood of Choices: Variety of housing types and scales for people to choose
  8. Celebrates History and Culture: Wayfinding by way of historic landmarks acknowledges and celebrates the history of the community as a way to lift the community up and move the City forward

Residents are encouraged to give their feedback on the Tidewater Gardens Vision survey, www.norfolk.gov/TidewaterGardensvision

Watch: 3D flythrough video (Vimeo)

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