Writing & editing
for AIM HIGH PUBLISHING
The New Suburban Dream is the sixth issue of The Design Guide for Aim High Publishing. Andrea Stevens researched, curated, produced and edited local and international design features for the annual publication.
A sample of what we wrote:
Our predominant housing types reflect an historic preference for the detached single-family dwelling. We didn’t get the row or terrace houses of Melbourne and Sydney, partly because we built in timber and had to physically separate our houses to prevent the spread of fire between neighbours. But this separation slowly grew from a practical one to two metres to as much as six metres and more. After World War Two, the ‘American Dream’ and its comfy lifestyle became a focus, and so we pushed further and further out into the countryside, building more single houses, more roads, more stormwater headaches, and all the congestion and costs that come with that.
The acres of bland suburbia – and resultant monoculture of single houses, particularly in Auckland – is not a good fit with the diversity we now have in our communities, and no longer a very affordable or sustainable land development model. Today, we have more single-parent homes, retirees, couples without kids; the nuclear family is no longer the typical resident. And even if it was, they understand that the house needs to be able to adapt to changes in ages and stages: from accommodating a young family to a household with adult children to an empty nest to the need to care for aging parents. How is what we’re building going to handle this need for greater diversity and flexibility?
Graphic designer: Friends of Design