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The benefits and challenges of mixed-use facilities

The benefits and challenges of mixed-use facilities

The concept of mixed-use developments has been on the rise over the last two decades. With an increased decline in the availability real estate, particularly land it is no wonder this is the case. Architects and developers are seeking to improve the quality of life within relatively dense areas. In this article we will explore the benefits and challenges of mixed-use facilities.

What is a mixed-use facility?

Mixed-use facilities or developments can either be single buildings or large communities that include residential, commercial and industrial usage. All of this is accomplished within a dense area. To premise is to accord residents of these community’s ease of access to a host of different amenities. The location of mixed-use developments is often strategically worked out in close proximity to a diversity of transport options, schools, shopping malls and other amenities. Moreover, mixed-use facilities are an efficient way to conserve valuable land.

The benefits of mixed-use facilities

Convenience and walkability

The greatest number of modern home buyers are millennials. As such there is a need for architects, developers and builders to cater to their needs. Millennials desire walkability, convenience and ease of living. With this in mind, millennials prefer to live, work and socialise within walking distance.


Mixed-use facilities offer less investment risk through diversification. Remember that these developments are comprised of residential, commercial and industrial units. This means should any downturn occur in any property segment the other segments will keep the development abreast. In addition, mixed-use buildings tend to offer investors higher returns and better cash flow.

Reduction in traffic

Mixed-use facilities allow residents to find al of their needs within walking distance. This translates into a reduced need to drive thereby lessening traffic. In addition, the various public transport options available within close distance reduce the need for resident to use their personal transport. Reduced traffic will also result in reduced car emissions and ultimately less pollution. In the modern era sustainable green efforts are particularly appealing to renters and buyers and this is what mixed-use facilities offer.

Greater exposure to customers

For those in business mixed-use developments can help you generate more business. If your location is idea then you may attract more customers if you receive a lot of foot traffic outside your shop. In addition, local residents will opt to buy from you due to the convenience and easy accessibility.


Living, working and socialising in the same area will allow you to interact with a lot of other residents. This will enable you to have a sense of community and belonging. Being a part of the community is important for building lasting and meaningful relationships with other residents.

The drawbacks of mixed-use facilities


With an intricate mix of businesses and residents in close proximity of each other noise can be a huge problem. This is something that could put off potential buyers and renters. As such it is imperative for developers to seek professional acoustic assistance when designing multi-use developments. The acoustic specialist will be able to advise on how to eliminate and minimise noise. Moreover, the hassle and bustle of pedestrians in addition to traffic noises, all within a congested area could be a recipe for disaster.

Lack of parking

Another scenario that could potentially pose a huge problem is the lack of space for parking needs. This problem applies to both residents and business in the area. Although solutions do exist; for example, underground parking, they are often prohibitively expensive.

From an investment perspective, mixed-use facilities are huge projects that require significant investment. Despite the apparent drawbacks, a lot of developer are viewing multi-use facilities as an extremely viable investment opportunity that is work exploring. Hence, we have witnessed quite a large number of such developments springing up all over the country. In the end, missed-use facilities can be an extremely lucrative investment opportunity. After all they are sustainable, resource efficient and can add life to an area.


Teddy Chibanguza

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