Turning Suburban Blights into Community Hubs

Natalie Ross (MLA '11) was shortlisted for her project "Combat Concrete" in the Strip Appeal ideas design competition. An online vote is taking place now through January 16th to decide the Public Choice winner. Architects, creatives and the general public were asked to propose innovative ideas for the aesthetic reinvention and adaptive reuse of small-scale strip malls in their local neighborhoods. Ross submitted work inspired by an Urban Design Studio class where she investigated a strip mall located in North Minneapolis along Broadway Avenue. Ross worked with Juxtaposition Arts – a local non-profit promoting art and entrepreneurship among youth in North Minneapolis – to understand the space better. Juxtaposition's concern about the lack of fresh food in their neighborhood,…

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College of Design Students Driven To Discover

College of Design students are competing for scholarships with 30-second videos illustrating what they're driven to discover. The competition, open to all undergraduate students and majors, asked participants to explain how the University influenced their search for knowledge and self-discovery. All submitted videos are posted on the University of Minnesota's Facebook page. Voting runs now through January 17th. A total of 16 scholarships ranging from $5,000 to $1,000 will be awarded to the videos with the most "Likes" on Facebook. Good luck to participating students from the College: Caitlin Dippo Marilena Mihai Oana Mihai Hannah J Preble Jordana M Reece Kiley J Schmidt Joel Valdez Sondra Vine Nathan S Wong Yichu Wu Learn what inspires them here!…

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Landscape Architecture Students Reinvigorate University Avenue with the Starling Project

The project's name is a metaphor: starlings are birds that use existing nests. In an effort to revitalize vacant storefronts along the Central Corridor light rail line, students in the Landscape Architecture program are playing matchmaker. The Starling Project aims to bring property owners and local community organizations together for month-to-month opportunities while University Ave is under construction. "The economic downturn has led to a surge of entrepreneurial thinking in all fields," says co-founder Ben Shardlow in a press release. "Many individuals and groups are nimble and flexible enough to benefit from having a space month at an attractive price, and new enough to prefer that to a longer contract." The project organizers, including Landscape Architecture student Kristen Murray…

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