Detoxifying “The Triangle”
Team Energy intended to bring clean energy resources to the Bay Area’s “Toxic Triangle.” Residents in these predominantly lower income neighborhoods of the triangle (formed by Richmond, Oakland and San Francisco), constantly suffer environmental injustice due to effects of abandoned industrial plants and military defense facilities. Even when voicing the dire concerns for their health, these people are not heard. But with their efforts combined in an Urban Energy Center on Treasure Island, their voices can become one. With the resources the space would provide for students, activists, kids and residents, the at-risk community could gain strength through numbers and knowledge.
CITY:San Francisco, CA
The “Toxic Triangle” of San Francisco imprisons residents of lower income areas to the brunt of pollution from industrial waste. How can residents of the triangle and surrounding areas take a step toward freedom from these toxins?
- Tess Fish, Academy of Art University
Translating Public Radio
After asking Madeleine Brand some of her specific desires for the challenge, Amy Martin saw a demand from radio listeners that had not been tapped into. LA is an extremely diverse city and for many people who live there English is their second language, or they don’t speak it at all. If KPCC reached the top eight non-English speaking languages in LA, they could nearly double their potential listenership. Although broadcasting in that many languages would cost a lot of money, podcasts in those languages are a more practical approach to inform this mass population of non-English speakers in their native language. Publicizing the change with posters, billboards and bus ads in these languages could spread the word of this masssive addition to public radio as well as a new slogan, “ Your City. Your Stories. Your Language.”
CITY:Los Angeles, CA
Bettering Local Business
Student Orlando Sanabria found that in his community of El Sereno, there was a significant increase in the number of liquor stores, fast food joints, and other businesses which can have a negative impact in bulk. He researched the levels of approval business owners have to go through in order to open a business, and he found there wasn’t much. First, he thought kids could be part of the approval process as they’re the most impressionable. He also pitched an idea for a show which he wanted to pitch to FOX, called CouncilSwap. City councilmen from one area would switch with another, where they would have to deal with issues they’re not accustomed to. Going from a place where the main issue is parking to a place where the main issue is violence could give representatives different perspectives on what goes on in the communities around them.
CITY:Los Angeles, CA
Simplified Housing Process
Tanya envisioned the tangle of LA freeways as a metaphor for the bureaucracy that’s involved in housing the homeless. Using this visual, she devised a game in which people consider all of the current steps of housing the homeless, and go through the system trying to eliminate as many steps as possible. Becky Kanis of 100,000 Homes brought together people from organizations who focus their efforts on helping the homeless (100,000 Homes Campaign, Gett Love, Home For Good, Americrops, Housing Works/a>Common Ground/a>) to play the game themselves. It was a success! The team narrowed the system down in order to determine exactly which steps were crucial. The game is going to be mobilized to different cities in the form of a whiteboard with magnetic cards for each step as a way for cities to personalize their own system. This method not only benefits the staff, but is also a visual tool to show homeless clients progress and the steps of the system so they can better anticipate their own success.
CITY:Los Angeles, CA
The 100,000 Homes Campaign paired with Home for Good, aims to house the most at-risk homeless people in America. Muddied by bureaucracy, this process can take as many as 44 steps during two years. How can housing staffs be trained to quicken the process?
100,000 Homes Campaign: Becky Kanis
Listening to Community
Natalie Jeremijenko fed her curiosity of how people discover and share information and incorporated her findings to the challenge she received at NYC 311. First, she pitched the idea of solving the problems of people in the community by showing them that that they may not have one at all. For example, someone calling to get a tree removed, may not realize the benefits that the tree is doing for the air around their home. Further, Jeremijenko suggested a requirement, like jury duty, for NYC residents to answer phones at NYC 311 and address their community’s complaints. This would give them an idea of what’s happening in their community while possibly making them more empathetic to the issues in their own neighborhood. This challenge was submitted as part of the Institute for Urban Design’s By the City/For the City competition.
CITY:New York City, NY
From neighborhood problems to personal complaints, NYC tries to address people’s issues, but could the process be improved?
NYC 311: Chenda Fruchter
Bridges Between Neighborhoods
The separation between neighborhoods in St. Louis has created social segregation as a result of difference in wealth and race. Arch City Revival focused their plans for convergence on the needs of the people instead of just on infrastructure. They’re solution is hubs strategically placed where clashing neighborhoods meet. The hubs would offer a place to rest, read information about the neighborhood, look at photos of past events and check out local art. These structures would be built in a way to bring people together. The mission goes beyond these structures and on to community programs: block parties, community recipe books, youth music programs. The possibilities are endless. Tied to the mission of the structures, all of these ideas could bring people together who would otherwise not cross paths. By pairing up with community programs, schools, and youth groups Arch City Revival can start from right inside the community and find out the needs of the city and what people already offer. Their mission is not only to build a place to gather, but to motivate people to go there and know their neighbors.
CITY:St. Louis, MO
Throughout the city there are streets and public spaces that serve as dividing lines which segregate communities. How can we design the borders between our communities to act as bridges between our neighborhoods?
- Arch City Revival: Katy Mike Smaistrla, Emily Hemeyer, Joyce Gorrell, Amy Lampe, Sarah Paulsen, David Burnett, Michael Allen, Kara Clark Holland
Trailnet: Jennifer Allen, Grand Center: Vince Schoemehl
Waterproofing Sunset Park
After proposing several solutions to heed the possibility of flooding (like a NASCAR track on a series of floating barges), Colin Brice and Caleb Mulvena of MAPOS said that those are reactionary solutions. Much like Venice, Italy, they proposed to just do nothing at all. Create a line of Do Nothing (dN) waders and get all of the stars to wear them on the streets on NYC. It’s a funny image that shows what could happen if nothing is done. Right now, the streets aren't flooded, but right now is the time to prepare for the danger that could come from Sunset Park's waterfront. This is the first step in getting support behind a solution for Sunset Park and the city. This challenge was submitted as part of the Institute for Urban Design’s By the City/For the City competition.
CITY:New York City, NY