Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science




Urban sprawl has become an urgent issue in the United States. Cities of different sizes are suffering from different degrees of unfavorable consequences of urban sprawl. As the major contributing factor to the out of control phenomenon, suburban housing developments bring along not only the seeming fulfillment of the American dream but also bring along many undesirable results. As people move into the subdivision homes, they are moving into the programmatic lifestyle. Ames is a small university town in central Iowa. Although being a small town, Ames is already showing some early stages symptoms of urban sprawl. More houses are built at the edge of the city. Planning policies are promoting a more non-integrated society by separating single-family properties from rental properties through zoning regulations. Instead of taking advantage of the potential of the downtown residential area and transform it into a vibrant area, it is being turned into a suburb-like setting.;Among the single-family appearance of the downtown Ames residential area, there are many conditions of personal reconfiguration of the spaces to accomodate new needs and household structures. One of the more obvious conditions is claimed by the zoning ordinance as "non-conforming lots". After studying the potentials of these lots, they become the prototype of the proposal for a plan (double the housing density) to realize the potentials of the downtown Ames residential district. The proposal tries to convert the district into a vibrant pedestrians oriented district and to provide an alternative housing scheme and lifestyle against the surburbs.



Digital Repository @ Iowa State University,

Copyright Owner

Cheung Chan



File Format


File Size

60 pages