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Thursday, September 18, 2014

#ThrowbackThursday Thoughts

What defines your neighborhood? Are people lingering, is it a vibrant hub?
When you hear the word ‘neighborhood’, what thought first pops into your head? Is it defined within a social context or is it geographical as in denoting a specific location? Now do the #ThrowbackThursday thing and go back a few decades or a century if you wish. How you thought of a neighborhood twenty to fifty years ago might be quite different than how you might define it today. Now ask yourself after thinking back, how do you define that same word, ‘neighborhood’ as you repeat it again? Is your definition different or the same?

Of course there’s an Annie tie-in, a direction on this #ThrowbackThursday post that parlays into the aspect of design. It requires a quick read on an interesting article, ‘Eastern edge of campus to become pedestrian-friendly.’ In a snapshot, this piece talks about “transforming urban streets…into vibrant hubs.”  What is specifically of design interest - how the United States is thinking a bit more European in its current neighborhood designs. As this article points out, “Since cars became the focus of landscape design in 20th century American cities, urban streets have acquired “hostile environments that are only conducive to getting people from point A to point B.”  What drove American landscape design for cities (cars) is now revisited and revamped for pedestrian-friendly revitalization.  The end goal of this particular revitalization project is to create more than just a ‘means to an end.’ It’s an attempt to draw people back into the street scape and create a social and vibrant hub.
So that’s the #ThrowbackThursday thought; intended to throw you back just far enough to encourage your own design food for thought. What do you notice as you drive, pedal or walk through your own neighborhood or those areas you pass to get from ‘point A to point B?’ Are people lingering, is it a vibrant hub?
© Image by Ann Bilowz - #ThrowbackThursday image of Florence, Italy
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© 2009 Ann St. Jean-Bilowz/Bilowz Associates Inc. (including all photographs, unless otherwise noted in Annie's Gardening Corner are the property of Bilowz Associates Inc. and shall not be reproduced in any manner nor are they to be assigned to any third party without the expressed written permission and consent of Bilowz Associates Inc.)