02-09-15

CUDC Fall Studio Teams Compete in MidTown Design Competition

nykamp and gates image_cropAerial rendering of a development proposal for Cleveland’s MidTown District created by CUDC graduate students Matthew Nykamp and Heather Flick. The concept, named “Deeply Rooted,” proposed a public green space network overlaid on broadband data infrastructure.  

First year graduate students at the CUDC kicked-off their urban design studio experience this fall with a local design competition. Focused on a segment of Cleveland’s Health-Tech Corridor, the competition involved several local partners and offered a $1,000 cash prize provided by Geis Companies.

Stretching along three miles of Cleveland’s Euclid Avenue, the Health-Tech Corridor (HTC) served as the geographic scope for the studio. The HTC is a 1,600 acre swath of near east side neighborhoods, including healthcare institutions, business incubators, academic centers, and over 123 high-tech companies, all anchored by a bus rapid transit (BRT) line.

AU14 Studio Syllabus-3

The competition’s primary focus sites lie within the broader Health-Tech Corridor, clustered between E. 55th Street and E. 70th Street in the MidTown neighborhood. Students were given a tour of the area by knowledgeable community partners, including: Jeff Epstein, Director of the Health-Tech Corridor; Maura Maresh, Development Director at Geis Companies; and Will Warren, Finance Analyst at the City of Cleveland’s Department Economic Development.

Five student teams competed in the studio’s design competition. Each project employed a unique perspective on the opportunities presented by the site. Although all teams produced strong proposals for the jury to consider, ultimately Team RED was selected as the prize winner.

Students will present their work again at an event organized by Heath-Tech Corridor at JumpStart on February 26, 2014. If you’re interested in learning more about the upcoming event or the student projects, please contact studio instructor David Jurca.

Final slide presentations from all teams are shown below:

 

From Grey to Green | Clarisse Gates, James Lennon

Graduate students Clarisse Gates and James Lennon envision a holistic development strategy focused on improving the health of MidTown employees and surrounding residents. From Grey to Green identifies measurable goals for green infrastructure, providing attractive and functional amenities to spur new development.

 

MidtownLink | Said Abiakl

Exploring the site’s potential to connect adjacent neighborhoods, MidtownLink weaves a multi-use trail through variously scaled public spaces. Said Abiakl conducted a rigorous analysis of climatic conditions, storm water strategies, and programmatic arrangements to arrive at an iconic circular form to anchor the mixed-use development.

 

Mi[xe]d Town | Tyler Middendorf

Through research on the district’s historic development patterns, Tyler Middendorf derived the insight that past developments were too focused on a single industry. Comprised of businesses primarily based on the automotive industry, the district fell victim to volatile global market forces, resulting in the vacancy we see today. In an effort to prevent similar collapses in the future, Mi[xe]d Town diversifies entertainment, mobility, and employment opportunities, creating a resilient community.

 

MidTown Beat | Brittany Ballish, Andrew Foster

Building on existing assets within MidTown, Brittany and Andrew aim to grow the various rhythms of activity in the neighborhood. A proposed music therapy facility leverages the area’s music identity, punctuated by the nearby Cleveland Agora. Public spaces create areas of respite while integrating multiple levels of entertainment. Transit-oriented design elements reconnect Midtown with Downtown Cleveland, universities, and healthcare campuses. Streetscape enhancements and public arcades respond to the need for north-south connections to enable future growth and neighbor relations.

 

Deeply Rooted | Heather Flick, Matthew Nykamp

“The Deeper the Network, The Greater the Community” is the tagline for Matthew Nykamp and Heather Flick’s proposal, which aims to grow rich digital and physical social spaces. Leveraging the area’s broadband fiber infrastructure, Deeply Rooted attracts both new technology businesses and current neighborhood residents to interact in a dynamic public realm.

 

RED | Turki Alosimi, Mykie Hrusovski, Katelyn Milius
* Competition Winning Project

RED‘s goal is to create a technology-focused environment that promotes healthy living, celebrates diversity, fosters collaboration, and provides opportunities for growth on site. The project team addressed this goal by creating a flexible design strategy, rather than rigid master plan, which empowers nearby residents to climb up the ladder of success.

Team RED also created a stop-motion animation, which portrays an engaging story of two people working in the neighborhood.

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