This isn’t exactly the left-handed compliment architect Andres Duany paid High Point a few weeks ago, but it’s not exactly a favorable comparison from fellow architect Tom Low, who’s part of Duany’s team working with city leaders in the effort to bring downtown back to life:

…Low said his company has created consensus in the other cities in which it has been the most successful.

He cited Naples, Florida, which he said was “a gap-toothed, one-story main street a few years ago” but is now a multiple-story main street that has drawn hundreds of millions of dollars in investments.

He cited his hometown of Roanoke, Virginia, where he said the company transformed the city’s market area.

And he cited the redeveloped Southside neighborhood in Greensboro. “As the mayor said, it was the best project in the last 50 years,” he said.

Low repeated the advice of his boss —- if you want to revitalize downtown HP, throw out burdensome rules and regulations.

City planners are indeed rewriting the city zoning ordinance, but as Paul Clark notes it “seems unlikely that the High Point Planning and Zoning Department will come up with fewer rules.”