Even impending ice storms didn’t keep residents of Houston, Mississippi from participating in the Citizens Institute on Rural Design hosted in their community February 22, 23, and 24. One of only four such events to be held in the US in 2015, the Carl Small Town Center partnered with the Chickasaw Development Foundation to pair local passion with expert knowledge from around the country in the fields of bike and pedestrian transit, signage and wayfinding, and community development. Many thanks to Project for Public Spaces and the National Endowment for the Arts, the organizations who brought this much-needed program to life.
Over the course of three days, social, environmental and economic factors were all considered as the team discussed the terminus of the Tanglefoot Trail (just minutes from downtown Houston), and design implications for the city as a whole. The CSTC will continue to develop the design with the community throughout the spring and summer, so images are still to come, but here are a few of my favorite quotes from our expert panelists at the event.
“Building a park or a building and then thinking you can just walk away is like thinking you will never need another hair cut.” – Cynthia Nikitin, Director Citizens Institute on Rural Design
“Even the most expensive mile of bike and pedestrian infrastructure is about 1/50th of the cost of a mile of car infrastructure.” – Heather Deutsch, Sustainable Transportation Planner, Toole Design Group
“Our task is to hear what this place is all about. Let’s create a singage kit of parts based on the unique crafts and craft people here.” – Andrew Barresi, Principal, Roll Barresi & Associates
The most important quotes come from local residents though. Two images of our Houston Candy Chang-style “photo booth” are below. More of these to come as well.