Mixed use development
The term ‘mixed use development’ refers to development projects that comprise a mixture of land uses, or more than just a single use. In terms of planning permissions, mixed use refers to land or buildings used for different uses which fall into more than one use class.
Mixed use developments can be ‘vertical’, in which a single building accommodates multiple uses, such as a skyscraper that has floors of office space as well as a hotel complex, or a terrace building that has a flat on the first floor and a shop on the ground floor.
Alternatively, they can be ‘horizontal’ mixed use development where a range of different buildings on the same site each fulfill a specific purpose, such as a community area that has accommodation as well as playing facilities, shops, parking and other amenities.
In Britain after the Second World War, town planning tended to focus on large, single-use buildings such as shopping centres. These often faced criticism for disrupting the traditional flow and diversity of town centre areas. More recently, mixed use developments have become a more prominent feature of planning policy, with the aim of revitalizing urban centres and generating benefits for the community, such as reduced demand for transport and other infrastructure, local employment opportunities, more interesting urban fabric and enhanced property values.
‘promote mixed use developments, and encourage multiple benefits from the use of land in urban and rural areas, recognising that some open land can perform many functions (such as for wildlife, recreation, flood risk mitigation, carbon storage, or food production)’
National planning practice guidance suggests that promoting healthy communities should include ‘…opportunities for meetings between members of the community who might not otherwise come into contact with each other, including through mixed-use developments, strong neighbourhood centres and active street frontages which bring together those who work, live and play in the vicinity’
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- Brownfield land.
- Cities as systems - BRE Solutions for urban environments.
- Compact sustainable city.
- Designing smart cities
- Eco towns.
- Garden cities.
- Mixed use property investment.
- Neighbourhood planning.
- Public space.
- Urban design.
- Use class.
- Building - Mixed use city centre schemes
Featured articles and news
The origins, evolution and future of Level 3 BIM.
For new and returning Urban Design students, check out our article list divided up into the modules you'll be studying.
Report states that health of urban dwellers could be significantly improved by rethinking transport design.
The Kremlin, the centre of Russian power, includes some of the country's finest architecture.
Report launched outlining steps for a national infrastructure system that is efficient, sustainable, and delivers until 2050.
A review of Justin Bere's concise and well-presented introductory guide to Passive House.
This article describes in detail the tender process for a typical commercial construction contract.
What is energy storage, what are the different types and what is its future?
MAD Architects reveal their designs for a state-of-the-art concert hall in Beijing.
Take a look at BIG's designs for two twisting towers in New York City.
'The filing cabinet' which was labelled one of the best British buildings of the 21st century.