The HDSi community design approach is steeped in the art and science of creating long-term enduring communities and destinations. In determining the design solution, HDSi works directly with the client providing tactical professional advice, research and strategies to successfully complete your project by listening, 360-degrees of engagement, data-driven analysis, and integrated design to achieve an implementable vision. To achieve a unified community feel, our seamless design process blends neighborhood design models with planning themes and environmental consciousness within the client’s marketing intent. HDSi’s design philosophy is based upon identifying and incorporating strong natural features as unifying elements of the master plan. These natural features together with streets and trails become the framework for the community. Neighborhoods are independent built environments stitched together by the blue/green open space as well as the streets and trails. This process produces an integrated master planned community that balances creativity with practicality. A successful master plan delivers place-making, resilience, and ultimately, return on investment.
On complex projects, HDSi employs a “studio” approach allowing different disciplines to collaborate as a team. This holistic approach balances creativity with practicality to achieve the most thoughtful and successful design solution. The studio collaboration is an integration between community planners, urban designers, GIS analysts and, as necessary, civil engineers, biologists, architects, and traffic engineers. The collaboration encourages alternative perspectives generating a creative design to bring the client’s goals to reality. Client success is then measured as a “win-win-win” scenario for the client, the public and future users.
Thirty three years ago, my career started in Orlando as an urban designer for a boutique design firm. Trained as a landscape architect specializing in site design, virtually every type of development project has been effectively designed for the client. Large-scale master planned communities, resorts, commercial centers, industrial sites, golf course redevelopment, office parks, schools, and parks have all been designed to meet the development program.
The Urban Design practice is greatly augmented with the corporate alliance with the Libra Design Group. This full-service landscape architecture/urban design firm and HDSi have 33 years’ experience of working together. We completed an assignment for Lennar last year on a new 500-acre master-planned community in Lake County, Florida.
- Community Design
- Street and Open Space Framework Plans
- Community Theming
- Sector Plans
- Small Area Plans and Studies
- Walkable Grid Design Model
- Conceptual Site Studies
- Development Program Testing
- Bubble Plans
Consulting and Permitting
HDSi specializes in consulting on planning, real estate, and entitlement strategies. Having 30 years of central Florida experience undertaking private development projects, we have experienced about every possible real estate issue. This experience covers more than 50 different municipalities processing entitlements and permits. Please refer to the client lists below to see the depth of successful experience for major developers in central Florida. HDSi specializes in the following tasks:
- Planned Development Applications
- Rezoning Applications
- Comprehensive Plan Amendments
- Policy and Code Interpretations
- DRI Rescissions
- Real Estate analysis
- Development Agreements
- Utility Service Agreements
- Transportation Funding Agreements
- School Funding Agreements
- Client Coordination
- Consultant Team Leadership
- Technical Project Liaison
Public Planning Services
HDSi participates in public planning services for local governments primarily on community design objectives. Specialties include writing Form based Codes including Codes for Ocala, Palm Bay and Altamonte Springs as well as revisions and additions to the Apopka Kelly Park Form Based Code. HDSi also specializes in using urban design and consulting expertise to lead small area design studies with residents and commissioners like the Altamonte Springs Sunrail Station Area Transit Oriented Development Plan.
Expert Witness Services
Since 1994, HDSi has provided expert witness services to attorneys across Florida. Experience includes participating in over 800 cases, testifying in Circuit Court over 50 times and giving hundreds of depositions. Primarily working for private real estate interests, cases have involved condemnation, land use appeals, design issues and even a divorce (real estate value issue). This deep experience has strengthened HDSi’s entitlement strategies and our consulting and permitting services provides me with real world examples for testimony. Recent testimony has been for landowners involved in a land use appeals both for and against the government.