Document Type



Now that most people live in urban places, answering which urbanism best provides citizen well-being becomes increasingly important. After nearly a century of suburban development, the significant drawbacks of urban sprawl are widely documented, namely the unsustainability and social impacts they incur. Many American cities, however, continue to chiefly expand in this way. What if cities were to make decisions not based on the status quo of today’s building codes but instead drew inspiration from great historical cities, applying their lessons to the unique challenges of the 21st century?

The New Urbanism movement aims to identify and incorporate the elements that characterize historic cities beloved worldwide into modern urban centers, with a focus on North America. This means reforms in areas such as walkability, form-based codes, and architecture. This research investigates the potential positive impacts of New Urbanism qualities on the economy and psychological well-being by comparing Arlington, Texas, and Minneapolis, Minnesota. Through a literature review and a comparative case study of Arlington, Texas, and Minneapolis, Minnesota, this research aims to offer detailed insights into the impacts of these urbanism factors, providing useful guidance for today’s urban development. Although direct links between urban qualities and improvements in these areas were not studied, this research identifies significant differences in the outcomes of these cities from 2010-2020. It concludes that these differences were, at least partially, influenced by their distinct urban development patterns.


Economics | Psychology

Publication Date




Faculty Mentor of Honors Project

Dr. Chi-Young Choi and Dr. John Adams



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