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Old 01-22-2013, 07:26 PM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
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For a long time the prevailing policy was to separate residential and commercial uses as much as possible. It seems that in the US, Australia and Canada, shophouses started to fall out of favour as the automobile rose to prominent and cities started to be built for auto-traffic instead of streetcars/trams. However, with the rise of new urbanism, mixed use is in vogue again, and I'm seeing more apartments with a bottom level dedicated to shops. As long as the apartments are properly noise-insulated I like the idea of living on top of a shop.

Now actual shop-houses are different. Buildings which function as both a shop and a residence, often with the residence on the upper level. These were very common in American cities in the past, and are still common in other parts of the world. Do you think they're a good idea? Are there many in your neighbourhoods?
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Old 01-22-2013, 07:37 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trimac20 View Post
For a long time the prevailing policy was to separate residential and commercial uses as much as possible. It seems that in the US, Australia and Canada, shophouses started to fall out of favour as the automobile rose to prominent and cities started to be built for auto-traffic instead of streetcars/trams. However, with the rise of new urbanism, mixed use is in vogue again, and I'm seeing more apartments with a bottom level dedicated to shops. As long as the apartments are properly noise-insulated I like the idea of living on top of a shop.

Now actual shop-houses are different. Buildings which function as both a shop and a residence, often with the residence on the upper level. These were very common in American cities in the past, and are still common in other parts of the world. Do you think they're a good idea? Are there many in your neighbourhoods?
Love the concept in theory, they're building about a dozen in my neighborhood, so ask me in a year or two...
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Old 01-22-2013, 07:57 PM
 
Location: North Baltimore ----> Seattle
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I lived in one that was about 120 years old, I heard no noise from the coffee shop directly below. Hearty Northern New England construction though!
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Old 01-22-2013, 08:37 PM
 
Location: Southern California
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trimac20 View Post
...

Do you think they're a good idea? Are there many in your neighbourhoods?
It's an excellent idea.

[there are none in my neighborhood]
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Old 01-23-2013, 05:13 AM
 
Location: Currently living in Reddit
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I don't know if they ever really went out of vogue in urban areas. These have existed pretty much everywhere I've lived in the Northeast. Lots of pizza places like this, where the owners live above the shop.

The ones I particularly loved were in Sofia, where the old communist block buildings weren't built to accommodate storefronts on the first level, so entrepreneurs started using the basements as shops. It's a common site in Sofia to see pedestrians kneeling down to hand money through a basement window to buy cigarettes and gum.
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Old 01-23-2013, 06:15 AM
 
Location: "Daytonnati"
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I never heard the term shophouse before. We called them corner stores. They used to be all over.

Seems like a lost art when it comes to modern retail development...incorporating residential and retail into the same structure.
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Old 01-23-2013, 07:26 AM
 
Location: Philaburbia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dayton Sux View Post
I never heard the term shophouse before. We called them corner stores. They used to be all over.
Same here, and there are plenty in my neighborhood -- over the laundromat, the convenience store, the little neighborhood bakery -- although some seem to be in dire straits with empty or dingy storefronts. Some are converted single-family homes, but others were designed as first-floor commercial buildings and second-floor apartments.

I lived over a funeral parlor for a few months ... The downstairs neighbors were very quiet. I'd agreed with the owner to be virtually unseen and unheard while services were going on, but otherwise I could make all the noise I wanted.

Would I live over a commercial establishment? Maybe, if I had some private outdoor access, off-street parking and the business below wasn't a dry cleaners or anything else stinky, or a bar that was open until 2 a.m.
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Old 01-23-2013, 09:03 AM
 
Location: Thunder Bay, ON
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What they're buildings quite a lot of where I'm from is live-work units. That means you can essentially control the amount of noise, since you own the retail too. Although control over neighbouring retail is a bit more limitted, I think these are mostly operated as condos, and it seems like mostly the less noisy time of retail, with hair-dressers, professional offices and small shops rather than bars.


From: http://urbantoronto.ca/forum/showthr...-Applications/

They usually has some sort of off street parking at the back for residents, and often have private outdoor access in the form of patios on top of the rooftop or garage access.
These have both, there are a few other similar developments next to it.
Oakville, ON - Google Maps

These have balconies/terraces along the back lane, some bigger than others.
Oakville, ON - Google Maps
Oakville, ON - Google Maps
Port Credit, Mississauga, ON - Google Maps

In this case, it's just a small balcony along the street
Oakville, ON - Google Maps
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Old 01-23-2013, 09:44 AM
 
Location: Philaburbia
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^^ Wow. Talk about cookie-cutter!
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Old 01-23-2013, 09:49 AM
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Location: Long Island / NYC
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I'll like 'em. As long as the next unit over doesn't look the same.
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