Degree Type

Thesis

Date of Award

2016

Degree Name

Master of Science/Master of Community and Regional Planning

Department

Architecture

Major

Architecture; Community and Regional Planning

First Advisor

Nadia Anderson

Second Advisor

Jane Marie Rongerude

Abstract

Suburbia and the American Dream have long, complex history in the United States. As the visual manifestation of the American Dream since the mid-twenty first century, suburbia has been criticized for being placeless, unhealthy, discriminatory, and wasteful. Alternative development methods have been created to combat the growth of suburban sprawl to create “places worth caring about” (Kunstler, 2007). This research study, through the methodology of oral history, uses in-depth interviews and morphological study to continue the narrative of suburbia and the American Dream as it exists in two alternative developments in Central Iowa: Prairie Trail in Ankeny and Glynn Village in Waukee. Through the research process, the role of these development types within the narrative became clearer: Morphology can create a sense of community and belonging; perceptions are shifting away from false conventional wisdom of the past; nostalgia plays a role in decision-making for the future; and there has been a generational shift from an American Dream that prioritized financial security to an American Dream of the pursuit of happiness.

Copyright Owner

Kristen Ann Greteman

Language

en

File Format

application/pdf

File Size

189 pages

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