Building a new residential housing development that actually feels like a small town is almost impossible, says Steve Mouzon, the founder of Mouzon Design.
But the founder and developer of Seaside, Florida did just that, using public space to foster a new independent, tight-knit community.
“The developer had the audacity to build a town square, with a post office, a grocery, a bookstore, and a collection of other restaurants and shops with apartments above,” Mouzon explains. “Never mind that the post office wasn’t a sanctioned US Post Office, but rather ganged mailboxes installed inside a tiny civic building. Because the mailboxes wore civic clothing, people behaved in a civic way. And even though Seaside has never been incorporated as a town, people nonetheless behave in neighborly ways.”