Upzoned

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February 2, 2022  

Can Corporate Campuses Urbanize the Suburban Experience?

February 2, 2022

Following WWII, many corporations fled from city centers to settle down in the suburbs alongside homeowners. Now, though, it seems that some large companies are pivoting their real-estate models toward building more compact, mixed-use centers, rather than the typical single-user suburban office park for their corporate campuses.

A recent New York Times article by Keith Schneider describes this as the “urbanization of the suburban experience.” It points to several examples, such as Capital One’s 24-acre campus in Tysons, Virginia; Walmart’s soon-to-be 350-acre headquarters in Bentonville, Arkansas; JPMorgan Chase’s regional headquarters in Plano, Texas; and Microsoft’s future 90-acre regional headquarters on the western edge of Atlanta.

Many of these examples have some kind of public-interfacing, mixed-use, residential component to them—a merging of both the modern models for corporate campuses and retail, mixed-use centers as a way of dually anchoring the development project. But is this approach a net positive or a net negative when it comes to suburban development? Find out today as host Abby Kinney and co-host Chuck Marohn “upzone” this story, unpacking and analyzing it through the Strong Towns lens.

Additional Show Notes