MIT Research & Paper on Placemaking

The white paper I recently published through MIT has gone viral!  I am so pleased with all the coverage…and pleased the paper can help spread the word about the benefits (and challenges) of placemaking.  The paper, titled “Places in the Making” has been featured in Forbes, the Project for Public Spaces, Next City, Planetizen, and Parksify and the news release can be found here.  The PDF is available for download on my MIT research page.

Our research included Corona Plaza in Queens, NY; Better Block in Norfolk, VA; Eastern Market in Detroit, MI; Discovery Green in Houston, TX; Guerrero Park in San Francisco, CA; City Repair in Cleveland, OH; Shreveport Common in Shreveport, LA; TAXI in Denver, CO; Streets Alive in Fargo, ND and Moorhead, MN; and Kentlands New Urbanist community in Gaithersburg, MD.

At the October 22nd preview event, our panelists included Aaron Naparstek of MIT (and special advisor for the white paper), Wendy Jackson of the Kresge Foundation, PPS President Fred Kent, Better Block co-founder Andrew Howard, and myself.  Also working on the paper with me were MIT research assistants (and recent graduates) Katie Lorah, Rebecca Disbrow, and Anna Muessig. And of course, this paper wouldn’t have been possible without the generous support of Southwest Airlines and the assistance of MIT’s Department of Urban Studies and Planning.

In the coming weeks we will post research for the paper that didn’t make the final cut, such as character sketches of our favorite “zealous nuts,” further info on some of the case studies, and ongoing reflections about what some of us learned about placemaking from this experience.

The hashtag for the paper is #placesinthemaking.  Please use it if you discuss the research on social media so we can find you!  Also, for updates on the paper and other interesting, relevant industry information follow me @susansilberberg and my company @civicmoxie on Twitter.


Norfolk Better Block August 2013

Participants in a Community Walk, Norfolk Better Block August 2013