Darien, CT | 6.7 Acres
Master Plan & Full Architectural
The re-development of the Corbin District represents an important opportunity to reinforce Darien’s downtown as the vital pedestrian-oriented town center. The Corbin District Master Plan covers approximately 6.7 acres, currently characterized by strip-mall development and surface-parking lots. The master plan aims to re-envision the area into a walkable mixed-use community.
Corbin Drive is ideally suited to take on the role of, “Main Street.” It’s location at the center of the shopping district, and perpendicular orientation to the post road, along with its scale and relatively low traffic count, give it the perfect ingredients. Both sides of Corbin Drive, and the south side of the Post Road are to be lined with two and three-story buildings with shops and restaurants on the first floor and residences above, creating an active streetscape. Residents will live in a truly walkable community in which they can commute to the city, go to the grocery store, clothes shopping or dinner and the movies, without needing their cars.
Within the Corbin District, a variety of outdoor public spaces are to be created to provide a new heart to the downtown district. For special events, like concerts, the functional area of the town green can be more than doubled in area by closing off an interior drive to vehicles. Restaurant uses in this plan are clustered around the central green to bring active uses to the center of the district.
The architectural vocabulary is derived from the simple charm and character of New England towns. The building form does not read as one large structure, but as an assemblage of buildings that were constructed incrementally over time. The design offers both diversity and continuity of architectural form, with the buildings as a backdrop for a vital pedestrian streetscape.