Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space

"A community’s physical form, rather than its land uses, is its most intrinsic and enduring characteristic." [Katz, EPA] This blog focuses on place and placemaking and all that makes it work--historic preservation, urban design, transportation, asset-based community development, arts & cultural development, commercial district revitalization, tourism & destination development, and quality of life advocacy--along with doses of civic engagement and good governance watchdogging.

Friday, December 06, 2013

Institute without Borders Connecting Divided Places program

Borders are interesting demarcations to consider.  I think about this in terms of planning in the DC metropolitan area, where you have three "states", Maryland, Virginia, and DC, that ought to be coordinating better what they do.

Of course, many other metropolitan regions cross state borders.  And in some places you have multistate agencies like the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

At the same time, there is the general city versus suburb issue, in a variety of dimensions.  And the fact that "suburbs" are urbanizing and beginning to offer "urban" lifestyle choices--this started some time ago, beginning with Federal Realty's creation of Bethesda Row in Bethesda, Maryland more than 10 years ago.

There is the issue of the US and Canadian border, a line I used to cross a lot when I lived in Michigan, which borders Canada, and the US-Mexico border, which creates interesting planning issues in states like California, Texas, and Arizona.

And because I have been writing articles about culture based revitalization efforts in Europe and the European Union, I have become a lot more conscious of the "one market" and borderless region that Europe is for European citizens, but also the close proximity of the various nations, and how some metropolitan areas cross national borders, and how the EU is motivated to improve less well off areas is to reduce population migration from poor areas to comparatively wealthy areas.

Also, I attended a program a couple weeks ago at American University on arts-based revitalization in South America, and learned about the Miami Observatory on Communication and Creative Industries at the University of Miami, and how it raises border crossing issues as well.

So the fact that Toronto's Institute without Boundaries has released a call for "curriculum partners," for a new project, Connecting Divided Places, to investigate social, economic, environmental, and cultural divisions in cities throughout 2014 and 2015, seems very interesting to me.

If you have some ideas for projects, you should check it out.

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At 3:47 PM, Anonymous Christopher said...

Worked with Institute without Boundaries, Chicago's Illinois Tech (ITT) and the Parsons DESIS lab on a charrette weekend in October. IwB is an interesting group, they have a very specific process but strong.

At 5:15 PM, Blogger Richard Layman said...

I wondered about that. I saw mention of that program on their website, they are supposed to be sending me info. That's cool you participated in it.

At 9:16 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Basle is in 3 countries


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