11-14-17

Associate Director, David Jurca, Wins AIA Activism Award

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The AIA Cleveland Activism Award recognizes local emerging leaders who are influencing a sustainable future of the profession by making architecture/interior design accessible and relevant to the public while both educating and learning from the broader community.

David Jurca has dedicated his professional career to enhancing the built environment through meaningful engagement with the local community. As Associate Director of Kent State University’s Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative, David guides the office’s professional practice, research projects, and graduate teaching with a commitment to equity.

David is a relentless advocate for his students. He aims beyond expectations to create recognition opportunities for aspiring leaders in Kent State’s Cleveland programs. Students led by David received Honorable Mentions in the International ULI Hines Competition, Second Place in Miami’s DawnTown Mobility Competition, the Excellence in Student Planning Award from the American Planning Association, as well as Merit and Honor Awards from AIA Cleveland.

In 2013, David launched COLDSCAPES.org to spur creative design in winter cities. He also co-founded Design Diversity, an initiative to promote people of color in architecture and design professions in Northeast Ohio. Design Diversity has organized local networking events, national speaking engagements, and the soon-to-be released Design Diversity Index, an online tool to track diversity data for design schools and professional affiliations in Ohio. In support of Design Diversity’s mission, David leads Making Our Own Space (MOOS), a youth design program that trains students to envision and build their own public space improvements. MOOS was awarded the 2017 Place Planning Award from the Environmental Design Research Association.

Beyond his professional commitments, David contributes to the Greater Cleveland community through dedicated volunteer service. He served on the Franklin-West Clinton Landmarks Advisory Committee, Friends of the Romanian Culture Garden Committee, Bike Cleveland advocacy campaigns, and the Gateway District Public Realm Advisory Committee. David has been a member of the City of Cleveland’s Near West Design Review Committee for over four years, currently serving as Committee Chair. This year, David was also appointed to the Board of Directors for Canalway Partners.

Congratulations David!

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11-14-17

2017 Midwest Urban Design Charrette: North End Narratives

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Each year, Kent State University partners with graduate students at Lawrence Tech University and Ball State University for our Midwest Urban Design Charrette, a weekend-long design workshop where we collectively tackle an urban design project. Last year the CUDC hosted our visiting universities here in Northeast Ohio, working on the Akron Innerbelt redevelopment site. This year, we were all excited to caravan up to Lawrence Tech’s beautiful facility in Midtown Detroit.

Over the weekend of October 20th through the 22nd, CUDC staff and students, plus a few Cleveland State University planning students, teamed up with our counterparts at Lawrence Tech and Ball State, working collaboratively between design disciplines. Three teams generated distinct ideas for the future of the Oakland Avenue Commercial Corridor in Detroit’s North End neighborhood.

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The North End is known for its Motown past, its rich and collaborative arts culture, and its recent forays into large-scale urban agriculture. As development pressure increases in the Midtown neighborhood to the south, the North End could face new market demand and resulting development opportunities; however, many community members have specific concerns and ideas about what shape those opportunities should take. The students’ task across the weekend was not merely to generate realistic design ideas, but to do so while navigating a complex social fabric already existing in the neighborhood.

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Over an intense 48 hours, the students visited the site, including unique neighborhood assets like a schvitz (a historic public bathhouse) and an urban farm. After a team dinner, we all rolled up our sleeves and got to work. Saturday afternoon each team presented their initial ideas to the community, who had useful and specific feedback; the teams were able to take their input into their final design proposals. The final presentations, on Sunday afternoon, found a receptive community heartened by the incremental and pragmatic ideas for how to move their existing commercial corridor into a new and inclusive future.

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The final design ideas will be shepherded by our Lawrence Tech University partners, and assembled into a report with ideas for implementation. We look forward to revisiting the North End again the next time we’re fortunate enough to visit our neighbors to the north (maybe to check out the Schvitz now that it’s open again!). Thanks to Lawrence Tech for hosting another successful Midwest Urban Design Charrette!

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group3_afterGroup 3 design idea.

 

10-17-17

Cleveland Public Library: Community Vision Plan Wrap-Up!

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We’re happy to announce the final publication of our CPL150 Community Vision Plan!

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For the past three years, CUDC staff have been working with the Cleveland Public Library (CPL) on their Community Vision Plan. One of CPL’s strategic priorities is to prepare the library system for its 150th anniversary, in 2019. CPL150, the name of the engagement process, involved 13 of the system’s 27 branch communities to ask what they need from their local library branch.

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? How can each branch custom-tailor its library experience to meet the specific needs of its community?

For each group of branches, the team engaged community members in a series of public meetings, surveys, open houses, advisory committee meetings, and targeted focus groups, for a three-year total of over 1,500 points of engagement. The team then produced a report for each group, summarizing the engagement feedback and the final recommendations. These recommendations included physical improvements, like interior reconfiguring or exterior seating areas, but also ideas for improving services, as well as larger neighborhood connections which can better integrate each branch into its surroundings. We summarized this overall branch experience into four distinct, nested levels: library building; library grounds; neighborhood; and library services.

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The final reports, from all three years, are on our CPL150.org site, available for perusal or download:

Group 1 (2015): Fleet, South, Sterling, and Woodland branches (Purchase report on Amazon)

Group 2 (2016): Brooklyn, Mt Pleasant, and South Brooklyn branches (Purchase report on Amazon)

Group 3 (2017): Eastman, Hough, Union, Walz, and West Park branches (Purchase report on Amazon)

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In addition, we’ve assembled a Summary Report which outlines some of the major themes we heard across most or all branches studied (Purchase Summary Report on Amazon). The design team found that far from becoming obsolete, our neighborhood libraries are more important than ever for the many ways they continue to serve their local population. Our library branches are information centers, community work spaces, workforce assistance centers, after-school gathering spots, and more.

Please visit cpl150.org for more information on our three-year collaboration with the Cleveland Public Library!

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09-27-17

Greggor Mattson Lecture | September 29

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Lecture: “Who Needs Gay Bars? Why Planners Should Care And What You Can Do”
Greggor Mattson
Friday, September 22nd
12(noon) — 1pm
CUDC, 1309 Euclid Avenue, Suite 200
Free and open to the public

RSVPs encouraged on Facebook event page: www.facebook.com/events/118361948853908/

The high profile closures of gay bars over the last five years have brought to public attention what the gay press has worried about for years: the geographical focus of LGBTQ life is changing. Popular and scholarly attention have blamed our “untethered,” “ambient,” “post-Gay” landscape on two factors: geolocating smartphone apps such as Grindr or Tindr, and the growing social acceptance of LGBTQ people. This talk challenges these assumptions for all but the most metropolitan gay cities. Almost everything we know about LGBTQ placemaking in the U.S. comes from four major cities with iconic gay neighborhoods, global financial institutions, international tourist draws—and only 15% of the U.S. population.

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This talk examines the gay bar as an institution in its own right, focusing on the role it plays in secondary cities such as Cleveland, Fresno, or Oklahoma City, and outpost bars that are the only gay bar within an hour’s drive of another. In these small cities, often in red counties of red states, smartphone apps are of little use and social acceptance is more elusive. Data include 50 interviews with gay bar owners and managers, site visits to over 80 gay bars in 27 states, a new national dataset of gay bar listings from 1977-2017, and a longitudinal study of San Francisco’s three gay bar districts. Mattson shows that bars in general have been squeezed in recent years, and that gentrification, changing leisure patterns, and corporate chain competition are more relevant to the challenges facing gay bars than narratives of technological or social progress. Mattson reports on several ways that urban planners, municipalities, Chambers of Commerce, and Convention Bureaus could support gay bars, and argue why they should start doing so. And he argues that we need to abandon planning stereotypes of LGBTQ people as the shock troops of gentrification or canaries of the knowledge economy, and start treating regional gay bars as social institutions in their own right.

Greggor Mattson is Associate Professor of Sociology at Oberlin College and the Director of the Program in Gender, Sexuality, and Feminist Studies. With degrees in sociology from Oxford University and the University of California, Berkeley, his research lies at the intersections of the sociology of sexuality, culture, and urban studies. The author of The Cultural Politics of European Prostitution Reform: Governing Loose Women and Before It Was Hingetown, listed among the best writing from and about Northeast Ohio from 2016 by the Cleveland Scene. He is currently working on a book about changes in American gay bars over the last twenty years. He blogs at greggormattson.com and @GreggorMattson on Twitter.

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09-22-17

Publication Release: NEW LIFE FOR OLD HOMES

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We’re happy to announce the publication of New Life for Old Homes: Design Guide for the Low-Cost Rehab of Vacant & Affordable Housing!

New Life for Old Homes is a user-friendly guidebook of low-cost, high-impact ideas for the rehabilitation of vacant and abandoned houses that would otherwise be demolished. The project was conceived in tandem with our Design/REbuild initiative, a vacant brick home in the St Clair-Superior neighborhood that was rehabbed by students from KSU’s College of Architecture and Environmental Design (and lots of community volunteers). While Design/REbuild could only address one house at a time, New Life for Old Homes captures the larger design ideas around refreshing Cleveland’s vacant houses to make them vibrant again.

Cleveland’s historic neighborhood fabric is threatened by the 1,000+ demolitions that take place every year. These houses form the basis of our traditional city neighborhoods and, while they may not have dramatic architectural or historic significance, they contribute to the familiar scale and character of Ohio’s cities. The goal of New Life for Old Homes is to repair, rather than demolish, and to rediscover the unique appeal that older houses have to offer. We hope the guide inspires Clevelanders to look again at our sturdy homes that are too good to throw away.

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New Life for Old Homes was generously sponsored by the Ohio History Fund, which supports innovative historic preservation projects across the state. We’re deeply grateful for the support of the OHF in creating this publication.

Please feel free to browse the publication below, and if you’d like to purchase a print-on-demand copy for yourself, you can find our Amazon link here. We also have copies of the printed book available for free at CUDC. If you’d like to pick up a copy, just stop by the CUDC office between 9am – 5pm and ask for the New Life for Old Homes book.

 

09-20-17

Ben Herring Lecture | September 22

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Lecture: “Source Material: Identities in Architecture”
Ben Herring
Friday, September 22nd
12(noon) – 1pm
CUDC, 1309 Euclid Avenue, Suite 200
Free and open to the public

RSVP on the Facebook event page.

Join us at the CUDC this Friday, September 22nd for a talk by Ben Herring, project manager at redhouse studio architecture. His interactive presentation will explore meaning through materiality in architecture. The applications of architectures are no longer simple, nor simply for providing shelter. The uses of architecture include identities as concrete as defining the face of business (Facebook Headquarters, Gehry Partners), as personal as defining home (Incremental Housing Complex Quinta Monroy, Elemental), and as controversial as redefining our memory (Vietnam Memorial, Maya Lin). These projects are young. However, architecture is prehistoric. In turn, many well established views on the state of the art of architecture have been declared and deconstructed throughout architectural history.

The aim of this presentation will be to review an abbreviated collection of these influences on architectural history. This survey of trademark architectural definitions, agendas, and identities will then be used to provide a groundwork for discourse on how we approach architecture today.

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Clifford Benjamin Herring is a designer specializing in new materials and architectures for public good. Ben was administered various honors at Ball State University where he received degrees in Architecture and Economics. He has previously served as a board member for PBS and NPR member stations in Southern Indiana and is currently seated as the executive board treasurer for the Refresh Collective (the organization responsible for the Fresh Camp). Ben is a project manager at redhouse studio architecture where his work includes new material developments and various non-for-profit and commercial architectures. As a workshop director for the CUDC’s Making Our Own Space (MOOS) program, Ben works with youth throughout Cleveland, Ohio to influence their neighborhoods through design and construction.

Let us know you’re coming. RSVP on the Facebook event page and please spread the word!

View the CUDC’s full 2017 Fall Lecture Series.

 

09-11-17

Jacinda Walker Lecture | September 15

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Lecture: “Design Journeys: Strategies for Increasing Diversity in Design Disciplines”
Jacinda Walker
Friday, September 15th
12(noon)-1pm
CUDC, 1309 Euclid Avenue, Suite 200
Free and open to the public

Join us at the CUDC this Friday at lunch for a talk by Jacinda Walker, the second event in our 2017 Fall Lecture Series. Jacinda Walker will discuss the objectives of her research work, “Design Journeys: Strategies for Increasing Diversity in Design Disciplines.” This solutions-based thesis presents fifteen strategic ideas to expose African-American and Latino youth to design-related careers. The interactive talk will reveal her research approach, illustrate the problems, share the design principles needed to close the diversity gap, and include the first groundbreaking updates on the Design Diversity Index project. Attendees will leave with a clear definition of this complex problem and a deeper appreciation of what is required from educators, parents, organizations, and designers of all disciplines to diversify our profession.

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The Design Journey Map, created by Jacinda Walker, is a tool to guide progress towards increasing diversity in the design fields.

Jacinda Walker is the founder of designExplorr, an organization that celebrates design learning by creating opportunities that expose African American and Latino youth to design. She also serves as Chair of AIGA’s Diversity & Inclusion Task Force. Walker has over 20 years of industry experience as a designer, entrepreneur, and instructor. Jacinda earned her BFA in graphic design from the University of Akron and an MFA in Design Research & Development with a minor in Nonprofit Studies from The Ohio State University. Her future goals include working with organizations to establish design education initiatives and to develop design programs for underrepresented youth.

For more information about the upcoming talk, please contact the CUDC at (216) 357-3434 or cudc[at]kent.edu

 

09-08-17

Watermark Project Summer Finale

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The CUDC, with partners Neighborhood Progress, artist Mimi Kato, and archaeologist Dr. Roy Larik, recently held their summer finale of events surrounding the Watermark project. The project seeks to evoke the memory of the Giddings Brook, a waterway buried and culverted in the early 20th century. Dee Jay Doc and Fresh Camp provided hip-hop entertainment, improvising lyrics about the history of the Giddings Brook, problems concerning lead in their neighborhoods, and other stories. Food, a rain barrel give-away, and an installation of the Watermark beach and pool also brought people out to the site.

 

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Giddings Brook is one of several waterways buried as the city developed in the early 20th century. The Brook holds history as a recreation, entertainment, and restorative place of gathering. Luna Park, a theme park, a Fresh Air Camp, and multiple healthcare facilities were located along the path of Giddings Brook before its ultimate burial. Watermark seeks to ask how else we might consider the use of existing waterways today, as well as those now buried in so many neighborhoods throughout the city.

 

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Watermark is made possible through a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.

05-31-17

WATERMARK: Summer 2017

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Did you know that Giddings Brook runs underneath the Hough neighborhood? About 100 years ago, the brook was buried in a pipe so that houses, streets, businesses, schools, and churches could be built on top.

This summer, there will be events and programs to help remember Giddings Brook. Councilman TJ Dow is supporting an effort by Cleveland Neighborhood Progress, Kent State’s Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative, and artist Mimi Kato to mark the path of this invisible brook the following events. All will be held at the intersection of Giddings Road and Superior Avenue (right across the street from the Addison Library).

Mon, June 12, 2017
1-3 PM
WATER, PLANTS & WILDLIFE WORKSHOP This free workshop is open to all, especially neighborhood kids who are home on summer break. We’ll learn about rainwater and where it goes after it falls on streets, sidewalks, and rooftops in the neighborhood. We’ll also learn about native plants and invasive species. Participants will receive seed packets they can plant. We’ll also make and install animal sculptures to remember the wildlife that used to live along Giddings Brook. Free refreshments for all!

Thurs, July 20, 2017
1-3 PM

TEMPORARY WATER PARK AT WATERMARK 100 years ago, people could swim in Giddings Brook when the weather got warm. Now that the brook is hidden underground, we’ll try to recreate the experience of water with sprinklers, wading pools, and a sandy beach on the site. Come cool off with Watermark!

Sat, Aug 26, 2017
noon-4 PM

WATERMARK WALK & COMMUNITY COOKOUT A free event where residents can learn about Giddings Brook and enjoy lunch. This event may also include a rain barrel workshop with the City’s Office of Sustainability.

For more information: https://www.watermark-giddings.org/

Or call Jeff Kruth at the Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative, 216-357-3433

03-23-17

Mapping the Design Journey

by Jacinda Walker
Founder, designExplorr.com 

Design Journeys: Strategies for Increasing Diversity in Design Disciplines from Jacinda Walker on Vimeo.

The journey to a career can be met with great success or great struggle. When a traveler is prepared for the journey, they typically cover more distance and the experiences they encounter become quick stops along the way— moments of pause that, with rest and refueling, allow them to begin again. However, for a traveler who is less prepared to face the bumps, twists, and turns of the road, minor challenges become major roadblocks. Those minor challenges become permanent barricades that ultimately inhibit travel and one’s likelihood to continue on the path of success. Unfortunately, the latter path described here is all too common among young African American and Latino youth who seek a design-related career.

This line of inquiry led me to visualize what the journey to becoming a designer looks like and analyze what tools are needed to obtain a design-related career. My research work entitled, Design Journeys: Strategies for Increasing Diversity in Design Disciplines (2016) explores diversity in design disciplines and presents fifteen strategic ideas to expose African American and Latino youth to design-related careers. This solutions-based thesis introduces a map charting a design career from grade school to a seasoned professional. The “Design Journey Map” contains four color-coded passages: foundations, proficiency, workforce, and influence. The passages overlap with career competency components to cultivate soft skills together with the hard skills youth learn along the journey to a design career.

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Figure 1: The Design Journey Map in full

The Design Journey Map is a simple navigational tool that can be used as a framework to better inform students, parents, professionals and organizations which strategic ideas are needed and where to place them along the career path to increase diversity in design disciplines.

This framework is important because it shows the journey to become a designer and provides four principles of a strategic solution for closing the diversity gap in the design industry. The principles address the complex problem of a lack of diversity in design by identifying characteristics of a strategic solution needed for helping to close the diversity gap in design. They are labeled as comprehensive, collaborative, local, and scholastic. These Design Principles help to ensure long-term success for programs and initiatives whose intent is to expose African American and Latino youth to design-related careers.

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Figure 2: The four Design Principles for a strategic solution

Read more…

01-26-17

Macy Nordhaus Banghart | Feb 03

We’re very excited about our Spring 2017 Lecture Series. We start off with Macy Nordhaus Banghart from Aerotek. Marcy is a recruiter for Aerotek Architecture & Engineering.  She specializes in full-time permanent placements in the field of Architecture.  She works with firms all over Ohio to fill their open positions. She has been recruiting for just over 3 years and graduated from Kent State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies.

Macy will be speaking about hiring trends in the field of architecture, what firms are looking for in a candidate, and helpful interview tips that aren’t so obvious. If you are a recent graduate, graduating this spring, or just looking for tips from a professional recruiter this is a lecture you will not want to miss.

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“Over the past three decades we’ve built an unrivaled culture and our unique, people-focused approach yields competitive advantage for our clients and rewarding careers for our contractors. Today we serve virtually every major industry, and we’ve placed exceptional people in hundreds of thousands of roles and positions. Everything we do is grounded in our guiding principles to build and nurture quality relationships that allow us to place quality people in quality jobs.” -Aerotek

Join us, Friday, February 3rd, from 12 -1 PM. As always, this lecture is free and open to the public.

Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative
1309 Euclid Ave., Suite 200
Cleveland, OH 44115

 

09-29-15

The Public Library: Designing a Community Asset

Recently, HBM Architects received national attention for their leading-edge library projects. The CUDC’s new Post-Graduate Fellow, Sam Friesema, worked for the firm and had a hand in the recognized projects. This is his story about his involvement and how he plans to bring his expertise to our work with the Cleveland Public Library and their CPL150 Community Vision Plan.


Before joining the CUDC, I had the privilege of working for HBM Architects for 4 ½ years. HBM specializes in library planning and design and has worked with over 300 libraries throughout the country. Libraries are in an exciting period of exploration where traditional library services are transitioning as technologies rapidly alter information access in our society. Libraries are becoming community centers and neighborhood technology hubs. Instead of housing books they now house activities, workshops, cafés, performance spaces, interactive learning areas for all ages, and yes, still a few books.

Libraries are an integral part of any city. As a public amenity, libraries build upon input from the community to construct spaces which meet local needs. While we can only guess what the library of the future might look like, several new projects give a glimpse into cutting edge library design. Four HBM projects recently received national attention for their innovative architectural visions of the contemporary library. I was fortunate to work on all of these projects at varying capacities.

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Click on project name for more images and information:

  1. EAST ROSWELL BRANCH LIBRARY – ATLANTA-FULTON PUBLIC LIBRARY
  2. NORTHSIDE LIBRARY JEFFERSON – MADISON REGIONAL LIBRARY
  3. SOUTHEAST DAVIDSON LIBRARY & COMMUNITY CENTER – NASHVILLE PUBLIC LIBRARY
  4. WARRENSVILLE HEIGHTS BRANCH LIBRARY – CUYAHOGA COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARY

Projects range in size and scope, from adaptive reuse to new construction. While each project is very unique, themes start to emerge as to where library services are headed: Open floor plans, flexible meeting spaces, technology saturation, less book shelves, casual seating areas, maker spaces, interactive early childhood literacy areas, all act to inspire the next generation of public library users.

Looking ahead, I am excited by the CUDC’s involvement with Cleveland Public Library’s CPL150 Community Vision Plan and hope to continue contributing to the library world in my new role here at the CUDC.

-Sam Friesema, Graduate Fellow

05-14-15

EASTSIDE HUB multi-family living for a multicultural population

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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.

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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 yeara 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!

04-15-15

Lecture 4/29: Richard Kennedy of Field Operations

AIA Cleveland JCFO April Event

AIA Cleveland and the Kent State CUDC are pleased to host an evening lecture from Richard Kennedy of James Corner Field Operations. As Principal In Charge of the Public Square project, Richard will discuss the aspirations of the redesign of Cleveland’s most prominent public space. The two part event will start at the CUDC, then continue at the new AIA Cleveland Center for Architecture & Design, nearby.

Richard Kennedy Lecture
Wednesday, April 29th
5:30p -6:30pm
CUDC, 1309 Euclid Avenue, Suite 200
Cleveland, OH 44115
Directions here

AIA Cleveland Center for Architecture & Design Grand Opening Party
Wednesday, April 29th
6:30pm-8:00pm
AIA Cleveland, 2059 East 14th Street
Cleveland, OH 44115

Space is limited to 100 seats for the event, so attendees must register. Tickets are available for $5 for all AIA Members and $20 for Non-Members.

Drinks and hors d’oeuvres will be provided at the AIA Cleveland Center for Architecture & Design during the Grand Opening Ceremony. This program is approved for 1.5 HSW Learning Units.

To register for the event or obtain more information, please visit: AIA Cleveland Lecture and Launch

 

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A recent rendering of the current plan for Cleveland’s Public Square, designed by James Corner Field Operations.

11-05-14

Monica Ponce de Leon | November 13 | CWRU

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Thursday, November 13, Case Western Reserve Baker-Nord Center for Humanities will welcome Monica Ponce de Leon as part of The Richard N. Campen Lecture in Architecture and Sculpture: Across Art and Architecture.

Using examples from her own creative practice, Monica Ponce de Leon, Dean and Eliel Saarinen Collegiate Professor of Architecture and Urban and Regional Planning at the University of Michigan, will discuss the ever-shifting relationship between artistic production and the architectural project. At the center of the lecture she tackles pre-conceived notions about design, creativity, and the power of imagination.

Pre-lecture reception begins at 5:30 pm in the lobby of the Allen Memorial Medical Library.

Date: 11-13-2014
Time: 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm
Location: Ford Auditorium, Allen Memorial Medical Library – 11000 Euclid Avenue
Registration: Free and open to the public, registration recommended

You can find out more details about Monica Ponce de Leon and the event here.