kelly heyer | October 6th, 2011
In 2005, Hurricane Katrina transformed the Lower Garden District of New Orleans, Louisiana (NOLA) from a vibrant, eclectic community into a blighted, desolate no-man’s land. A group of students from Washington University discovered that a new chicken coop for the Sixth Street Baptist Church was a great design opportunity to stimulate the community and create positive change in the community. Who would have thought that a small but well designed building for chickens would create such a positive impact on a devastated community struggling to rebuild itself?
[ chicken coop, Citybuild, Design Activism, God's Vineyard, New Orleans, slow food, Washington University ]
kelly heyer | September 20th, 2011
What’s so great about gated communities?
An anonymous design group, Heavy Trash, exemplifies how suggestive design and innovation can shed light on the problems areas of the current built environment and instigate positive change. Ed Blackely in the book Fortress America: Gated Communities in the United States states, “… The quality of community is no different in gated communities, even though residents have moved to gated areas believing that they would find their nostalgic idea of community, they have not. In fact, these communities promote privacy within privacy: residents tend to stay in their own backyard and do not visit on porches or front lawns.” How and in what ways can design begin to address this issue? With the power of design activism, Heavy Trash has found a way to do just that. //
[ Design Activism, gated communities, Heavy Trash, orange stair ]
kelly heyer | September 6th, 2011
Every year, on the first Friday of September, parking spaces are transformed into temporary urban parks that inspire people to rethink how we should use public space. PARK(ing) Day is a worldwide event to showcase how design can communicate much more than form and style and how it can be a catalyst for positive change. Several organizations, including Georgia Tech’s School of City and Regional Planning, have continued this tactical urbanism by utilizing design processes as a creative method for activating change and advocating for more livable cities. //
[ Design Activism, PARK(ing) Day, Tactical Urbanism ]