The center of small rural communities obviously lack the qualities found in urban suburbs.
On the other hand, suburban communities lack the elements of the centers of cities.
Viewed from a simplest vantage point, we could say that we are speaking of a kind of human intensity both in presence and activity. However, there are some less obvious physical elements that contribute to centers of cities that could be brought to suburbs to add to the quality of centrality.
Old western communities had second story facades to give a perception of height where a second story didn't exist. The distance between both sides of the street in large cities seems to diminish in relation to the excessive height of buildings.
My studies reveal that those suburbs that give a sense of height and lessen the feeling of distance between the two sides of the street also create this sense of urban quality.
One can test this by observing the height of buildings in the Glendale shopping center.
Building elements 30 to 35 foot high provide this required sense of height. There are other ways that the sense of height can be provided. This is by appropriately placed 30 t0 35 foot high sculptures.
These elements do not have the practicality that would require community developers to go in search of them and to pay the price of these art pieces that appear not to give a return.
I've started to design what can be referred to as “solar energy trees” of this height that would generate electricity for lighting of the streets of the community centers. They are not only art pieces but serve practical needs.
Some of the energy produced can be used to heat crosswalks to eliminate snow and ice accumulation.
Appropriately located these solar energy trees can accomplish several business district needs.
After working on this idea for several years, I've found that a type of solar tree has been developed in Europe and has already been put on display in Italy, Austria and Germany.
Ten percent of electrical energy in Europe is being used for street lighting and it expected that these trees may eliminate need of conventional energy for that purpose.
These trees could prove their worth and become an attraction to communities like Shorewood, if developed appropriately.
I'm beginning to seek some young people with whom to develop these art pieces and for the purpose of manufacturing of these energy-producing sculptures as a business.