Make It Paradise

On the morning of November 8th, the Town of Paradise and the unincorporated communities of Concow and Magalia were forever changed by the Camp Fire. It was the most destructive and deadliest wildfire in California history. The Town and County immediately affirmed their commitment to rebuild.

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Design Guidelines Go Digital

With the world’s first Digital Pattern Book,, the Chattanooga Design Studio sought to create a web-based tool to help builders, developers, city officials, and neighbors to understand the important aspects of Chattanooga’s historic neighborhoods and architecture, in order to maintain that character and quality while the city undergoes growth and change. 

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Lori Sipes
Urban Design Elements for Cities in the MENA Region

Cities in North Africa, the Saudi Arabian peninsula, and the Levant face unique challenges from the tremendous heat and dusty winds of the surrounding desert and high humidity along coastal areas. These environmental forces along with social and cultural norms have resulted in unique cities created over the past several centuries. Built in the pre-industrial era, these old cities offer many lessons for designing dense urban districts that are environmentally responsive and sustainable. There are many fine examples of modern cities influenced by international planning techniques but adapted to the unique environmental challenges of the MENA region.

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Neighborhood Suppers

Last century's general attempt to tidy up cities unintentionally removed many of the ways that we celebrate outdoor places, the fruits of our collective labor and the joy of living in neighborhoods. Thankfully, that is all starting to change. A rediscovered demand for sharing a meal together in both known and undervalued spaces has people clamoring to pop-up dining tables in cities around the world. It is proof positive of a shift from conventional thinking about urbanism to a more experience-based model as a core driver in building vibrant places and creating added value for cities. Farm-to-table has reached a new level. 

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Urban Design Associates
Everyday Squares

Memorable neighborhoods, towns, and cities are composed of specific types of places that share a unique ability to spark and continuously energize their communities. We have come to call this type of place Everyday Squares. As part of Urban Design Associates’ annual summer program, our Urban Researchers have immersed themselves in Pittsburgh to document, measure, and interview the curators of the Everyday Squares that are leading and sustaining the regeneration and vibrancy of the City’s many great neighborhoods.


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Meet Me In The Strip

One of the great things about living in Pittsburgh is the Strip District – the city’s version of a working market district. In our city, many people still shop for their pastas, olive oil, meats, fish, breads and pastries from local merchants, butchers and bakers. The traditions of Eastern Europe, Italy, Asia, and South America are alive and well there, albeit in a uniquely Pittsburgh way. It’s hard to find perogies, haluski, asiago and piave, locally made wines, homemade biscotti, fresh Italian pizzas, cannoli, South American treats like the Peruvian Pollo a la Brasa, old fashioned candy, Asian bbq chicken from a hot grill, and Italian espresso, side-by-side along the street in other U.S. cities.


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