Recently found this video of Michael Van Valkenburgh giving a background to MVVA and their initial approach to the North Grant Park at a community meeting. It is always interesting to see landscape architects presenting their company. The video does have a few edits and is not complete presentation but still worth a watch and will interesting to look back at in 10-20 years.
The White House launched the Office of Urban Affairs website including a blog and Innovations and Ideas page where US citizens can submit ideas and best practices. This is a follow up to the Urban Tour which included 9 city centers and the Inter-Agency working group on urban policy.
The OUA blog states that the launch of the website is to
This effort is an important addition to our ongoing conversation on the Future of America’s Cities and Metropolitan Areas. We have already met with many urban stakeholders, elected officials, and academics; and we’ve been around the country visiting places that are on the cutting edge of urban innovation. But today we are establishing a more direct relationship with you – the American people. You are the ones that are innovating every single day – you are the innovators. You tackle government bureaucracy with creativity and leadership; you overcome a slow economy with public-private partnerships; and you turn distressed neighborhoods around with determination, hope and, above all, hard work.
The President knows that government doesn’t have all the answers. He knows that the best solutions come from you in places like Auburn Gresham in Chicago, South Lake Union in Seattle, and the small city of Flagstaff, Arizona – just to name a few. We know there are many more out there and we want you to share them with us.
Billing the effort as light on study and heavy on action, environmental leaders say they’re seeking to heal the Great Lakes ecosystem from “150 years of abuse” and to ensure that “fish are safe to eat; the water is safe to drink; the beaches and waters are safe for swimming, surfing, boating and recreating; native species and habitats are protected and thriving; no community suffers disproportionately from the impacts of pollution; and the Great Lakes are a healthy place for people and wildlife to live.”
What made the recent groundbreaking for the new park at Adams and Sangamon Streets, currently known as Park 542, so “exciting” is “the new design,” said Chris Gent, deputy director of planning and development for the Chicago Park District.
Landscape architect Ernie Wong from Site Design Group was on site for the groundbreaking, along with Aldermen Robert Fioretti (2nd) and Walter Burnett Jr. (27th) and several other City and neighborhood leaders.