St James Plaza | Melbourne Australia | ASPECT Studios

ASPECTStudios_StJames_13
A rejuvenated urban plaza is the core to improving the retail and commercial viability of this renovated 1960’s building.
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Main Street Square | Rapid City USA | Rundell Ernstberger Associates

Main Street Square | Rapid City USA | Rundell Ernstberger Associates

Image Credit | Robert Specht

Main Street Square is a vibrant year-round destination for outdoor concerts, festivals, and markets located at the corner of 6th and Main Streets in downtown Rapid City, South Dakota. Formerly a one-acre impervious asphalt parking lot, this professionally-managed urban plaza showcases, through art, the natural and cultural history of the Black Hills region. The heavily programmed square fulfills a critical function as an outdoor gathering place, which the city previously lacked, and provides an activity, event and entertainment venue for local residents as well as the four million tourists who travel through the region annually.
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Erie Street Plaza | Milwaukee Wisconsin | Stoss Landscape Urbanism

Erie Street Plaza

The variegated surface extends into the steel marsh, which collects and cleans stormwater from the site. ©Stoss Landscape Urbanism

Erie Street Plaza is a small urban plaza in the Historic Third Ward district of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The 13,000-square-foot plaza lies at the point where the Milwaukee River meets the Federal Channel as it empties into Lake Michigan. It is the final link in a series of public space activators along the Milwaukee Riverwalk, a three-mile pedestrian and bicycle corridor that connects downtown Milwaukee to the emerging and redeveloping Third Ward, Beerline Districts, and the lakefront beyond. At the beginning of the project’s design, the future of Erie Street Plaza – its users, its function, its programming, even its necessity – were undecided. The urban context was generally one of infrastructure and industry; the site lacked neighbors and potential users. The site itself was a surface parking lot, subject to harsh environmental conditions, including high winds off the lake. Who is it for? How will it be used? This uncertainty, this open-endedness, was at the core of its design.

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