Created in January 2015, MakingOurOwnSpace (MOOS) is a collaborative effort between Cleveland youth and local design professionals to empower the next generation of placemakers. Led by the CUDC, the project trains middle and high school students as community designers. Over the course of nine months, students will design and construct multiple public environments and outdoor playscapes.
Britt Oval, a large green space across the street from St. Luke’s Pointe, will serve as the site for all the outdoor constructions. Three on-site projects will be built by the students to respond to changing weather conditions and user preferences. Although the projects will be short-term, they are intended to guide future investments in permanent public space enhancements on the site.
Youth participating in the MOOS project include 7th & 8th graders from the Boys and Girls Clubs and high school students from East End Youth Services. The students, along with two adult leaders from the local community, will be paid a stipend for their participation. The project will increase collaboration across community-based organizations, residents, and public/private partners. The CUDC has brought in architect Erick Rodriguez and graphic designer Arlene Watson to teach workshops. As well as, Alex Gilliam of Public Workshop to teach a week long class.
Freshwater Cleveland recently spoke with David Jurca, our Associate Director and one of the leaders spearheading MOOS about the initiative and our upcoming event Splash on Britt Oval that is taking place on August 8th. Here is an excerpt from the article:
“On a sunny Friday afternoon at the park, Jurca asks Streeter and McClain-Ferrell, “What do you hope to get from this?”
“To get people to come and keep coming back. So they want to build things of their own,” says McClain-Ferrell. “I just want to be able to say, ‘I made that.’”
This is their park made to their specifications. And that’s no small feat.
Jurca knows that although community planning often focuses on creating spaces for youth, those very same voices are regularly left out of the actual discussion. The format of public meetings aren’t aligned to make them feel welcome, Jurca says, whether it’s the time, location or questions asked.”
Learn more about MOOS and read the entire article here. Also come out this Saturday and check it out for yourself. There will be music, games, hot dogs and ice cream from 12-2 PM. The event is free and open to the public and will be happening rain or shine. Britt Oval is located across the street from Saint Luke’s Foundation, 11327 Shaker Blvd., Cleveland, OH 44104.
The CUDC partnered with the Cleveland Public Library (CPL) to conduct a planning process with four branch communities, together envisioning the 21st century library. CPL faces a challenge familiar to many institutions serving communities in Cleveland: How can we best meet the needs of our patrons in a changing context of new technologies, aging facilities, and declining population? CPL’s response to this question must be crafted individually for each branch neighborhood, based on the unique demands and opportunities present in those communities. The CUDC’s local knowledge of Cleveland neighborhoods and expertise in public engagement, depopulation research, and physical urban planning provide the complementary skills to enable CPL to take the next step in crafting an equitable Community Vision Plan.
The report articulates a wide-range of community priorities and reveals a clearer vision of the library’s role in each target area. Neighborhood asset maps, programming concepts, and visual renderings produced through this process enable CPL to now conduct a finer grain analysis of the operational costs, interior architectural feasibility, and financial investments required to commit limited resources appropriately. The CPL150: Community Vision Plan provides a road-map for actions worthy to celebrate in 2019 and beyond.
The CPL150 Community Vision Plan | Group 1 report includes recommendations for four initial branch communities:
- Fleet Branch Slavic Village neighborhood
- South Branch Clark-Fulton and Tremont neighborhoods
- Sterling Branch Campus District and Central neighborhoods
- Woodland Branch Central and Kinsman neighborhoods
The branches in the Community Vision Plan have been selected by CPL and their order of participation in the process has been determined through conversations with local public officials. The planning process is expected to be refined and expanded beyond this first group to include additional CPL branch neighborhoods.
Final recommendations for the current target neighborhoods were developed by the CUDC in close partnership with CPL and Enlightenment Consulting Group (ECG), through a carefully designed engagement process for each of the targeted branch locations. ECG’s previous work gathered feedback from residents that promote community building and address community deficits. Building upon this initial engagement process, the CUDC advanced the community conversations into the realm of physical planning. Gathering abundant feedback, the CUDC led 6 focus group sessions, 8 public meetings, 12 advisory committee meetings, and collected over 280 surveys in English and Spanish. In order to stay connected with people unable to attend meetings in person, the design team shared frequent updates on the process through a project website at www.CPL150.org.
The CPL150: Community Vision Plan articulates a wide-range of community priorities and reveals a clearer vision of the library’s role in each target area. Neighborhood asset maps, programming concepts, and visual renderings produced through this process enable CPL to now conduct a finer grain analysis of the operational costs, interior architectural feasibility, and financial investments required to commit limited resources appropriately.
The Cleveland Botanical Garden has a special exhibit on display called Branch Out. They invite you to explore a series of magical, interactive tree houses throughout the garden. Its a chance for kids (and adults) to put away technology and let their imagination run wild. Each tree house explores a theme connected to learning and fun including art, music, reading, math and play.
The tree houses were designed by local architects several of whom are CUDC alums. Two Teams of CUDC alums participated ThenDesign Architecture who built Jack and the Giant Pulpit and Sap +Iron Design|Build who built Acoustic Canopy and Seasons.
The team from ThenDesign Architecture included CUDC alums Wade Kratzer, Mia Katz, Claire Markwardt, Steve Bell, and Scott Alleman. Jeff Henderson of Ohio State University and Ed Parker of Kent State University were also on the team. We spoke with the team about their design, Jack in the Giant Pulpit. Here is what they had to say about their design process and working with the Cleveland Botanical Gardens.
“We surround ourselves with design; it is our livelihood. All of us find ourselves in nature whether it’s exploring on our own, or designing within, so when the Cleveland Botanical Gardens released a Competition to design a Treehouse, it was something that we could not pass up. It combined the opportunity to design with nature in the most literal way. During the competition process, we challenged ourselves to understand what a treehouse was and what a treehouse could be. Is it a shelter? Is it a private getaway? Is it a platform to overlook nature? Could it be all of these and more?
Our love of nature skewed us to think of what nature is. How big in reality it is compared to humans and how our imagination always leads us to get lost within it. We began thinking of folk-lore and Science-Fiction and other childhood tall tales that involved nature. This led us to expand upon the tale of Jack and the Beanstalk, giving us the opportunity to work a Giant Jack in the Pulpit into the story, so that adults and children alike could have the opportunity to participate in the tale.”
The team from Sap + Iron Design|Build consisted current and former CUDC students including Mykie Hrusovski, Alan Hipps, Jessie Hawkins, Adrian Marti, and Charles Fredrick who is an Assistant Professor and Interim Director of the Master of Landscape Architecture Program. Of the five projects that ultimately got selected for construction via a juried competition, two of their submissions were accepted. Of note, the jury was headed by Pete Nelson, the Tree House Master!
The houses each have a particular theme, Acoustic Canopy being a tree house that has built-in, bespoke musical instruments that encourages children to make and discover noises within the tree canopy, and Seasons being a small outdoor reading room for children. Both houses have a lot of custom details and features that were either planned from the beginning, or evolved as the project progressed. Another important note to emphasize is that Sap + Iron’s contractor was unable to commit to the project as it was beginning, so their team ended up constructing, rigging and installing everything by themselves.
- The Acoustic Canopy project weighs well over 2.5 tons, and was lifted manually by only four people over the course of 2 days.
- The tree that supports it is a Dawn Redwood which is a species thought to have gone extinct many millions of years ago, but was rediscovered and introduced to the U.S. only about 50 years ago as seeds and saplings. It’s already about 160′ tall.
- The Seasons Reading Room’s exterior is wrapped in Western Red Cedar that was hand-charred with a torch. This gives it its iridescent black color which serves a couple of purposes; a pleasing aesthetic, weather protection, rot resistance and insect repellency, (bugs don’t enjoy the taste of burnt wood).
We’re pleased to see our students working on such creative endeavors. The tree houses will be on display from now until August 23rd. Go out and explore the tree houses today!
All are invited to check out our Summer Graduate Studio’s final work on display at our upcoming public reception:
Wednesday, July 30
5PM – 6:30PM
Kent State University’s CUDC
1309 Euclid Avenue, Suite 200
The reception will begin immediately following the studio’s final review. All of the presentation boards will remain on the walls and attendees are encouraged to speak with our students to learn more about their design ideas.
Light appetizers and drinks will be provided. RSVPs are not required, so feel free to stop by and bring a friend!
Nine CUDC graduate students have worked through the Summer Semester to develop urban design proposals for Cleveland’s Opportunity Corridor. They met with stakeholders in the neighborhoods, Opportunity Corridor project leaders, and out-of-town design experts to explore a range of approaches to this significant planned redevelopment.
Early in the semester, students met on-site with Jason Minter and Jeff Sugalski from Burten Bell Carr Development Corporation (BBC) to walk the neighborhood. The E. 79th Street Rapid Station and Urban Agriculture Innovation Zone were areas of particular interest for BBC and the students.
Chris Ronayne and Debbie Berry from University Circle Inc. met with the students to share the Opportunity Corridor’s long history and current goals.
Students spoke with Opportunity Corridor Partnership‘s Executive Director, Marie Kittredge, to gather the most up-to-date plans for construction and discuss an overall vision for the project.
Stormwater and green infrastructure issues grew in importance for several students as their projects developed over the semester. Joseph Danyluk from Cincinnati-based Human Nature is currently working with the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District on projects within the Opportunity Corridor and graciously offered his time to visit our studio.
Although unable to join us in person, Elizabeth Ward from Perkins+Will shared her students’ recent work from Georgia Tech via WebEx. The Mission Zero Corridor graduate studio proposed design concepts for creating a regenerative, restorative, and sustainable highway, supported by the Ray C. Anderson Foundation.
Rounding out the range of possible design approaches from large to small-scale, Mike Lydon met with the students to share his research on Tactical Urbanism. His recent book on the topic includes a case study from a previous CUDC studio, Pop Up Rockwell.
We hope you can join us for the public reception to see the students’ work for yourself. Please feel free to contact the CUDC with any questions at (216) 357-3434 or email cudc(at)kent.edu
The Chris Connell Lecture has been cancelled. We will updated your when it is rescheduled and apologize for any inconvenience.
Join AIA Cleveland for a lecture by Chris Connell of Foster + Partners, Partner in Charge of the Health Education Campus, a joint venture with the Cleveland Clinic and Case Western Reserve University.
When: Wednesday, August 5th 6:00pm – 8:00pm
Where: CUDC, 1309 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44115
Cost: $5 for AIA Members (Must provide valid AIA #)
$15 for Non-Members
Free for all Students
Drinks and snacks will be provided for those in attendance. This program is worth 1.0 HSW CEU. Seating is limited and advanced registration is required.
The CUDC would like to welcome our new office manager, Ellen Schneider. Prior to joining the CUDC, Ellen worked as an Advising Office Assistant for the College of Urban Affairs at Cleveland State University for three years. Ellen holds a B.A. in Classical and Medieval Studies from Cleveland State University and is currently pursuing a Master of Library and Information Sciences and a Master of Science in Information Architecture and Knowledge Management from Kent State University.
We are excited to have Ellen on our team and please contact her for any administrative inquiries.
3D Rendering of Downtown Elyria
The CUDC in collaboration with Streetsense and Partners for Economic Solutions recently completed a plan for the City of Elyria. A Western Reserve town thirty miles west of downtown Cleveland, the City of Elyria asked the project team to develop a strategy for revitalizing three of its core areas: its historic downtown, the Midway Mall area, and the Cleveland St. corridor. These areas are rich with natural amenities and attractions. The downtown is cradled by the two forks of the Black River, creating two sets of waterfalls while the town is linked regionally through the North Coast Inland Trail, as well as a recently renovated light rail station in downtown.
Despite these abundant amenities, Elyria has seen more prosperous days. In 2012, the New York Times’ Dan Berry reported on Elyria in a series of articles and interviews titled “This Land,” painting Elyria as a quintessential American city full of heritage and hope, but not immune to the effects of decades of disinvestment and economic decline.
The CUDC and partners proposed a series of tactical policy, design, and economic development strategies as part of the Transportation for Livable Communities Initiative program. Emphasizing the benefits of infrastructural and transportation improvements coupled with economic development, the plan seeks to leverage existing efforts and projects to maximize benefits for the city. The plan, titled “Jumpstart Elyria” was recently featured in Cleveland Magazine’s “Rating the Suburbs” issue.
Our Post Graduate Fellow, Matt Provolt, will be leaving the CUDC after his year of service. The CUDC created the one-year position for graduates of KSU’s Master of Architecture, Master of Urban Design, or dual MArch/MUD program. Matt shared with us some of his thoughts about his time here at the CUDC and what he was able to accomplish. We wish him well in his next adventure!
What did this year-long Fellowship mean to you?
Initially, when I accepted the post-graduate fellow position, I was excited to return to the CUDC because I was remembering the time I had here in the past. I was a CUDC intern during my time in graduate school, and that experience opened my mind to so many different ways of looking at the city; gave me the opportunity to forge lasting friendships with my fellow students and staff; and connected me with people who have significantly influenced and shaped my life and professional trajectory in the time since. Coming back here for this fellowship, then, meant working with my former colleagues again and getting involved with more of the interesting projects I so enjoyed during my internship. Over the course of the year, though, this position has turned into something much more than that. It has been an amazing learning experience which has helped me mature as a person and as an urban designer. I have been able to have my hand in many thrilling and meaningful projects, and this has given me the foundation I need to take a strong step forward in my career. I am very grateful to have had this wonderful opportunity.
What were some of the highlights of the Fellowship?
One of the most enjoyable things for me was my involvement with the Elyria TLCI, a project which I saw from start to finish. It gave me the opportunity to explore and get to know an entirely new place; one with a fascinating history, beautiful building stock, and a distinct set of exciting challenges. I also got to work closely with the city’s Mayor, so that was an exciting experience as well. Additionally, I got to pick up the reins from a former fellow on a project that sought to improve the grounds of a men’s homeless shelter and create for them a recreation + garden space. That project was my first experience in being able to design and physically build (with the help of my colleagues) an outdoor garden space that then was used by the men staying at the shelter. That one was pretty rewarding, and it’s still continuing on and growing to this day! And of course, toward the end of my year, I got to utilize my interest in pedestrian-friendly street design. I did this in conjunction with a climate change mitigation project, wherein I created a set of user-friendly illustrations that show how various types of streets should be designed to mitigate the negative effects that extreme climate days have on people; namely pedestrians. For that I drew from personal research and my own daily experiences within the pedestrian environment in Cleveland.
What will you miss most about working at the CUDC?
It’s truly difficult to decide whether it is the people or the projects I will miss most, so I suppose it’s a combination of both. The project work here has been really exhilarating, and the wide range of its scope and the impact it has on our region is truly remarkable. It is why I loved my internship and is what has inspired me most during this fellowship year. What additionally makes the project work so enjoyable, however, is my colleagues with whom I am able to share ideas, ask questions, and just goof around on a regular basis. They have definitely added another level of fun into the mix, and I’ve had countless great conversations with everyone here. I’m certainly going to miss this group of people.
What’s next for you upon the conclusion of the Fellowship?
This fellowship has greatly strengthened my desire to build a career in which I can design at a large scale and affect meaningful change in our cities. To continue pursuing that goal, I have recently accepted a position as an urban designer + planner at a local community development corporation. This new position will allow me to continue growing as a designer, to further develop my skills in planning and community engagement, and to affect some of the meaningful change which motivates me to be a better urban designer. I’m very excited for this new challenge!
Can new design and construction ideas breathe life back into some of Cleveland’s houses?
We believe that design brings value, and may help others re-envision the possibilities for Cleveland’s undervalued housing stock. Every year Cleveland loses thousands of houses to demolition.
In 2014 a 3rd year Kent State University architecture studio led by Chris Maurer examined design possibilities for radically renovating an existing vacant brick house, 1045 E 67th St. Over the summer, CAED/CAEST students worked on-site every afternoon to realize their collective design vision.
In 2015, we’re returning to the house to finish construction with the aim of selling it in the fall and using the funds to renovate another house in 2016. And we’re looking for volunteers to join us!
Five Saturdays in 2015 – July 11; July 25; August 08; August 22; and September 05 – we’ll be on-site working 8:00AM-4:00PM at the house. If you’re interested in volunteering please reach out to Kristen Zeiber via email: kzeiber[at]kent.edu – we’ll put you on our list and email out the to-do tasks the week ahead of every Saturday. Earn Community Outreach IDP hours, bring tools for the day if you have them, and come as you can, whenever you can.
Thanks in advance for all your help! For more information on the design/REbuild house visit here.
AIA Cleveland is bringing back their annual summer festival that will bring architecture and design firm personnel and their families together with the public to celebrate design and enjoy the beach! The AIA Cleveland Sand Castle Competition and Beach Volleyball Tournament will take place at Edgewater Beach on Saturday, July 18th and feature a competition of more than two dozen sand castle and volleyball teams populated by Cleveland architecture, engineering, and construction firms.
When: Saturday, July 18th
Where: Edgewater Beach
10 AM – Castle Competition / Volleyball Tournament Begins
5 PM – Parade of Castles, Jury
6 PM – Championship Volleyball Match & Awards Presentation
Registration closes Friday, July 3rd. Register HERE to build collegiality within the architectural community and raise design awareness across Cleveland.
Unfortunately at this time we are going to have to cancel the upcoming lecture with Miguel Coyula. We are planning to reschedule in September and will keep you posted of the exact date. Apologies for any inconvenience.
Miguel Coyula is an architect, urban planner, and professor at the University of Havana. He will give a comprehensive overview of Havana from its origins to the present, ending with an open question shared by many people these day: What kind of city will Havana be in the coming years?
Professor Coyula will be introduced by Ronn Richard, President and CEO of the Cleveland Foundation.
The event will be held at:
Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative
Kent State University
Euclid Avenue, Suite 200
Cleveland, Ohio 44115
Directions to the CUDC
Following Professor Coyula’s talk, there will be a light dinner catered by Earth Bistro Café featuring contemporary American cuisine with a Cuban flair. This event is free and made possible by KSU President Emeritus Lester Lefton, but registration is required.
For any inquiries regarding the event, please contact the CUDC.
Please join us for a brown bag lunch talk with Cuban agronomist Isis Salcines along with a screening of the film, Tierralismo.
This free event will take place at the CUDC (1309 Euclid Avenue, Suite 200) on May 27 from noon-1pm. Please bring your lunch–we’ll provide drinks and snacks.
About the film…
TIERRALISMO A film by Alejandro Ramirez Anderson
On the outskirts of Havana, sandwiched between highways and public housing, a revolution is taking place. Here, in the district of Alamar, a 26-acre farming co-op provides employment for dozens of workers, while producing vegetables and medicinal plants for the local community and beyond.
Following the collapse of the Soviet Bloc in the early 1990s, Cuba was no longer able to access machinery and agricultural chemicals from its former Communist allies. In this difficult environment, the government relaxed economic rules and allowed the formation of cooperatives like the Organopónico Vivero Alamar.
What began as necessity—farming without pesticides and chemical fertilizers—has become a source of pride to coop members. They fertilize with compost and cow manure, raise their own insects for biological pest control, and have even created a fully biodegradable alternative to the plastic bag for use with seedlings.
Tierralismo introduces us to everyone from agronomists and senior management to workers who plant, plow, and propagate. The film also covers non-farming aspects of the operation, such as human resources and accounting practices where transparency is paramount.
Lovingly photographed, TIERRALISMO offers a behind-the-scenes portrait of the Organopónico Vivero Alamar and a stirring defense of the importance of farm work and sustainable farming practices.
About the speaker…
Following the film, Isis Salcines, Projects Coordinator in the Projects and Investments Office at the Organoponico, will give a presentation about her work. Ms. Salcines holds an advanced studies degree in Agricultural Engineering and has been with Organoponico since 1998. During her time at the cooperative, she has launched a new food preservation project and has focused on the marketing and distribution of local organic produce to domestic and international markets.
For more information about the event, please contact the CUDC here.
Congratulations to Kent State CUDC graduate student Alena Miller who took 3rd place in the 2015 Cleveland State University Real Estate Market Analysis Competition. Alena competed in a field of 20 students. Her project focused on the design of a community to support an influx of immigrants and refugees, in accordance with resettlement criteria outlined by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. Using a site in Cleveland (E. 61 Street, just south of Chester Avenue) she developed a plan for 180 apartment units plus 156,000 SF of urban agriculture. The inclusion of urban farming generated 25 on-site jobs for the refugee community.
Alena’s project is especially timely, given the large and growing numbers of people who are forced to flee their homelands each year due to political conflicts and violence. Greater Cleveland receives approximately 600-700 refugees a year—a number that could grow if planning, policies, and programs are in place to support these populations.
Her work represents a unique investment opportunity that advocates for the future of Cleveland. Congratulations, Alena!
Happy Arbor Day 2015!
Today is Arbor Day (April 24th this year), a holiday dedicated to planting and caring for trees. Could there be a more worthwhile activity? As many Subaru bumpers proclaim, Trees Are The Answer to many problems. This is especially true in our neck of the woods.
We all know one of Cleveland’s nicknames is The Forest City, but what can we do as residents to better live up to this title?
Be a good Forest Citizen and check out these opportunities to show some love to the leafy friends that make our city a better place:
- Get your hands dirty at the Adventure Tree Planting at Whitesburg Park in Chagrin Falls on Sat., April 25, 9am. Learn more on the Facebook event page here.
- Did you know the City of Cleveland will plant 1,000 trees in the next two years? Learn more about the Cleveland’s urban reforestation plan.
- Check out Cuyahoga County’s Tree Canopy Interactive Map to see how your home’s tree canopy compares to surrounding communities.
- Learn more about the Western Reserve Land Conservancy‘s Reforest Our City initiative, which offers Tree Steward Trainings and grant programs: http://www.wrlandconservancy.org/ReforestOurCity.htm
- Did you know roadside trees reduce nearby indoor air pollution by more than 50%? Learn more about the health and economic benefits of having leafy neighbors with these Tree Facts.
- Attend the Arbor Day 2015 event at The Holden Arboretum tomorrow, April 25th from 10am-4pm, which includes tree seedling giveaways, kids guided tree climb, and Great Lake Timber Show.
- Search all of Ohio for a volunteer opportunity or create your own event. Visit Arbor Day Foundation’s Volunteer Center.
Enjoy your Forest City!
Join AIA Cleveland and the Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative for the next lecture in the Emerging Practitioners Series as we welcome visiting designers Keith Hayes and Nikole Bouchard. Based in Milwaukee, Keith and Nikole are currently working in Cleveland’s St. Clair Superior neighborhood on the matireal landshape project. Focused on creating an up-cycled public plaza, the project will reuse discarded tires to construct topography and engage residents to build community.
In Version: The Mistaking of Placemaking
A first hand perspective on the amalgam of forces at work (Keith) and the role of architecture in the field of public interest design (Nikole).
Friday, April 24, 2015
CUDC, 1309 Euclid Avenue, Suite 200
Cleveland, OH 44115
Lecture is free and open to the public.
Visit the Facebook event page here.
As a designer and social entrepreneur, Keith Hayes is informed by interfacing with resources, landscape, and language.
ln 2010, he launched beintween, a social and spatial organization improv(is)ing leftover spaces, based in Milwaukee, WI. Noteworthy accomplishments include a successfully funded Kickstarter for matireal, an 8 acre linear corridor known as the artery, a guerilla installation known as the swing park, and the organization of a design/build coopetition. He is now actively pursuing partnerships to develop a takerspace, the reclamation of a double lot + vacant home in Milwaukee, in addition to a plaza proposal in Cleveland. Hayes informs his practice through the application of relationships, resources, and research through a process he refers to as sp/acement, whereby arts and cultural development become a retainer of community rather than a token to displace it.
University of Wisconsin Milwaukee, MArch
University of Miami, BArch
Nikole Bouchard’s research focuses on how the intersection between architecture, landscape, and infrastructure can stimulate ecologically sensitive and culturally relevant design interventions.
Nikole has previously taught at Syracuse University, Cornell University, The University of Waterloo and The University of Toronto. While teaching in Canada, Nikole collaborated with Toronto-based InfraNet Lab/Lateral Office on various design competitions and exhibitions. During this time, a number of award-winning projects were produced, including the 2011 Holcim Gold project Regional Food-Gathering Nodes and Logistics Network in Iqaluit, Nunavut, Canada. Prior to joining InfraNet Lab/Lateral Office, Nikole worked at the offices of Steven Holl Architects and Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP in New York City.
Princeton University, MArch
Cornell University, BArch
For more information, contact the CUDC at cudc(at)kent.edu or call (216) 357-3438.