Sponsor News Briefs

The University of Miami School of Architecture today announced a plan to bring “third places” – community spaces, marketplaces, incubators and training centers – into two underserved Miami neighborhoods with $650,000 from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. The Third Place Project will create spaces that provide resources and support to entrepreneurs, creatives and civic leaders in these neighborhoods, as a way to foster their ideas and break down barriers. It will also help transform these neighborhoods and create opportunities for local businesses, by establishing inexpensive spaces for startups and hubs for arts, culture and entertainment.

GREENPRINT 2015/2040, the final plan of the Mid-South Regional Greenprint and Sustainability Plan initiative, has been awarded the Excellence in Sustainability Award for a Plan. This prestigious award comes months after the Greenprint Plan was completed by a tri-state regional consortium of partners and formally released in February 2015. The plan effort was led by the Memphis-Shelby County Office of Sustainability. LRK and Team LRK Greenprint planning members Alta Planning, Placeways LLC, the Trust for Public Land, and Powers Hill Design congratulate consortium partners and the Office of Sustainability on the award-winning work that was accomplished.

TSW, an Atlanta-based planning, architecture and landscape architecture firm has been honored by Georgia Commute Options for the company’s commitment to clean commuting (carpooling, walking, cycling, taking public transportation, telecommuting, etc.). TSW won in the Best Overall Program category, and Alex Fite-Wassilak, TSW community planner, was recognized in the Road Warrior category for his commitment to commuting to and from work via bicycle.

Urban Design Associates (UDA) hosted a discussion of Innovation Districts at this year's annual APA Convention, held in Seattle. Innovation Districts are geographic areas in cities where leading-edge anchor institutions and companies cluster and connect. They are compact districts served by transit and they offer mixed-use housing, office, and retail. In a well-attended session, three districts were presented. John Rahaim, Planning Director of San Francisco presented the rapidly emerging South of Market Area in San Francisco.

MissingMiddleHousing.com is a new online resource dedicated to helping planners, architects, and builders implement a diverse range of housing types for the walkable communities of the future. Opticos Design's Daniel Parolek coined the term "Missing Middle" in 2010 to define a range of housing types that provide a solution to the mismatch between the available U.S. housing stock and shifting demographics combined with the growing demand for walkable urban living. The website features clear definitions of the types of mid-density housing that are most effective for creative walkable neighborhoods, and pin-points the market demographic that demands them. There is an extensive photo catalog and documented examples from around the country with illustrations and tables.

The Seaside Institute is teaming up with other non-profit organizations in Seaside to sponsor the Seaside Writers Conference from May 11-17. The Seaside Writers Conference is an annual gathering of creative writers from all the nation, and features award-winning writers in poetry and fiction and screenwriting who will offer a full week of intensive writing workshops, on day seminars, school outreach programs, and social events. A limited number of affordable places to stay are available for registrants in the Seaside Academic Village.

Jerry Spangler, Director of TSW's Architecture Studio, recently talked with the Atlanta Business Chronicle about his passion for church design and the recently completed ChristChruch Prebyterian project, an intown renovation of an office building into a church sanctuary, fellowship areas, and classroom space.

Opticos Design, Inc., the Berkeley, CA-based urban planning and architecture firm has launched a new website dedicated to Missing Middle Housing. “We felt it was important to create an online resource to help people understand these housing types and what housing planning, zoning, and financing changes are needed to make it possible for these types of homes to be built again,” Opticos’s founder, Daniel Parolek says.

The Bryan, Texas Health and Wellness Plan was unveiled Thursday afternoon at the City of Bryan Council Chambers. The  purpose of the LRK-designed plan is to promote healthy, active lifestyles and to support area businesses, St. Joseph Regional Health Center and Blinn College. 

 The Crosstown redevelopment project reached a ceremonial milestone as it officially broke ground this past Saturday. After five years of planning and designing, the project team shares more of their vision of the revitalization of this iconic building to the Memphis community.The building, thought of as a "vertical urban village", will house arts, education, healthcare, retail, commercial, and residential spaces in 1.5 million square feet. The project is expected to be complete in 2017. Meanwhile, see more renderings of what's to come on the LRK Crosstown project page or the Crosstown Concourse design page.

The Seaside Institute is offering a series of Arts & Architecture related
classes this spring. Architectural Photography with Steven Brooke, Plein
Air painting with Kathie Odom and an intensive drawing class with Brian
Bomeisler. A limited number of affordable places to stay are available for
registrants in the Seaside Academic Village.

Bill Tunnell, a founding principal at TSW, was featured on the "Around Atlanta"
edition of Atlanta Real Estate Forum Radio in February. Bill explains to host Todd
Schnick what New Urbanism is and how the principles can be applied to redevelop
small towns, including some of the communities surrounding the city of Atlanta.

Both hotelier Ian Schrager and developer Richard LeFrak see great things in the future for Miami real estate. Schrager and LeFrak spoke at the University of Miami Real Estate Impact Conference 2015, held Februrary 18 at the JW Marriott Marquis hotel in downtown Miami. Hosted jointly by UM’s School of Architecture and School of Business Administration, the Real Estate Impact Conference brings together the biggest names in South Florida real estate and development, both as speakers and participants. The 2015 conference featured a keynote session by LeFrak, moderated by UM President Donna E. Shalala, and a session on the future of the hotel industry with Schrager and Steve Witkoff of the Witkoff Group.

Walk Score is used by the real estate profession to measure the number of nearby amenities to a particular location.  This method of scoring has become a leading indicator of whether people walk. Urban Design Associates decided to apply the algorithms developed by Walk Score to professional sports facilities for MLB, NFL, NBA, and NHL and rank each team by their Walk Score. UDA also included the transit and bicycle ranking if available for those facilities. 

Save substantially while visiting dynamic Dallas Fort-Worth (DFW), a laboratory for placemaking ideas and tools. DFW is a microcosm of New Urbanism coast to coast and has a surprising number of hip,  walkable neighborhoods. CNU is the best chance to join with the nation's brightest minds focused on Meeting the Demand for Walkable Places. Don't miss it. Early bird registration for CNU members and nonmembers ends March 27. Further discounts are available for public officials, nonprofits, and students.

“Making and Remaking America’s Downtowns” is the focus of the National Town Builders (NTBA) Spring Roundtable in Little Rock and Conway, Arkansas, from March 20-22, 2015.

As part of the Greenprint Midtown streetscaping project in Midtown Atlanta, TSW was asked by the Midtown Alliance to improve the aesthetics and function of Juniper Street. Although Juniper Street is home to some of the city's most popular restaurants and theaters, and is part of the Midtown Business District, the street has sections that were in need of repair and weren't pedestrian or bicycle-friendly.

The first-ever 2015 Michigan Missing Middle Housing Design Competition challenges architects, designers, and urban planners nationwide to come up with innovative solutions for affordable housing options that offer a walkable lifestyle. The competition will be judged by an elite group of jurors, including  Daniel Parolek of Opticos Design.

The Village of Providence, featuring home designs by designer Robert Martignoni/Building Science Associates, Inc. receives Best in American Living Community of the Year award. The Village of Providence is a large-scale, pedestrian-oriented traditional neighborhood development near major landmarks, employers, and amenities in Huntsville, Alabama.

Easton Gateway will add 13 tenants to its lineup in the coming months, with some moving over from nearby Easton Town Center. With the additions, Easton Gateway is moving rapidly toward filling its 54-acre site.“We expect by the end of the year we will fill all the space,” said Beau Arnason, executive vice president at Easton operator Steiner + Associates. “There are probably a handful (of spaces) in the 12,000- to 15,000-square-foot size — medium box size — that are still available, but not a lot."