New Town at St. Charles was planned as a TND and embodies the most advanced traditional town planning principles. This resulted in the design of five compact, walkable and mixed-use neighborhoods surrounding a series of lakes. Each is approximately 1.5 miles across and comprises a mix of residential and commercial uses. Each neighborhood also has a center designated as an open space reserved for public use.
The main focus of this project was the creation of lakes and canals primarily needed to contain 75 acres of storm runoff. However, these lakes quickly became the strong and indentifiable character of New Town St. Charles by providing it with a dramatic and active waterfront. Four neighborhoods will surround a dense, island-like town center neighborhood connected by greens and plazas and entirely surrounded by water.
There are four principal entrances into the site. The most direct entrance is provided from Highway B, along one of hte pipeline easements, in the form of a wide and beautiful tree-lined boulevard that becomes the main thoroughfare or central spine for the entire community, linking the different neighborhoods.
Mixed-use buildings, shops and office uses will surround a main square on the town center island which is the largest and densest part of the community. Larger blocks include interior parking lots to accommodate public parking. The main road passes directly through the town square. It is flanked by two bridges on either side, each leading to a prominent civic green and building terminating those vistas. A small harbor at the eastern edge brings the water right to the main town square in a dramatic fashion and offers wide views of the community.
The remaining four neighborhoods are generally less dense. Roads with picturesque vistas, predominantly lined with single-family homes, meander throughout. The majority of these houses are served by rear laneways, such that the entire street frontage can become a pleasant experience for pedestrians. A system of sidewalks, mid-block pedestrian paths, pocket parks and linear greens and trails connect through the neighborhoods and are planned to extend into the adjacent regional park system.
It is anticipated that several institutions will also want to participate in the development of New Town St. Charles. Such civic uses include: a school, a library, a church, a firehouse, a community building, a clubhouse and assisted senior living.