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allynwest

Rice Design Alliance 2014 Design Charrette

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“Visions for the Village,” this year's design charrette, will challenge participants to imagine how Rice Village will evolve within Houston’s continuing evolution. Considered one of the city’s most desirable areas, Rice Village is poised for growth, but issues with mobility, walkability, and accessibility remain. Charrette participants will receive the full program that details these issues and presents further challenges when they arrive at 9 a.m. on Saturday, August 2, at Hanszen College at Rice University.

 


 

Organized by rdAGENTS, the young professionals group of the Rice Design Alliance, “Visions for the Village” will run from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Architects, designers, artists, and other individuals, as well as teams of up to five people, are invited to register. Fees range from $25 to $35 and will cover the cost of breakfast, lunch, and refreshments throughout the day.

 

A guided site visit on Saturday, July 26, will precede the competition. Results of the charrette will be on display and jurors will announce awards in the commons of Hanszen College at a reception on Monday, August 4, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. The reception is free and open to the public.

 

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I can't wait to see what comes out of this.  In another topic I spent a lot of time griping about the bourgeois-ization of the Village, so I think it will be fascinating to see how others would like it to develop.

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@Subdude, there'll be a reception on Monday, August 2, if you want to take a look at the boards and drawings (and drink some wine).

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Thanks.  What makes it an interesting is that these design charrettes generally try to end up with some sort of unified vision for the area in question.  To me, in this case the challenge is maintaining and/or bringing back a sense of charm and unexpectedness - qualities that tend to me missing in unified design visions.  

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That's a good point. As much as the new Hanover buildings bring to the Village, they are somewhat monolithic. As is the Village Arcade. At the same time, I wouldn't mind a "unified vision" when it comes to the sidewalks and streetscapes. You know: It might be a good thing if the intersections matched. And ramps led to ramps, say, not steep step-up curbs or storm drains. Or sidewalks were continuous. 

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At the same time, I wouldn't mind a "unified vision" when it comes to the sidewalks and streetscapes. You know: It might be a good thing if the intersections matched. And ramps led to ramps, say, not steep step-up curbs or storm drains. Or sidewalks were continuous. 

 

It would be a good thing, but this is Houston.  Forget "Houston is Hot" or "No Limits" - the slogan ought to be "Planning, Schmamming..." or "Coordination Is For Wimps."

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@allynwest

 

Embarrasing I know, but I don't know a whole lot about the Rice Design Alliance. What exactly is it? Just wondering. I could visit the website, but wanted to know from you :P

 

My favorite slogan would be: "The Urban Planning Wild West" lol

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@Luminare: Well, RDA is different things for different people, but the overall mission is to help to put as many people as possible in a position to do or say something about the built environment in Houston. We're a nonprofit, so most of what we do means to be educational and experiential — like this design charrette.

 

And we also curate an architecture tour every spring, put together civic forums, work with the Rice School of Architecture faculty to organize lecture series in the fall and spring, and publish Cite and OffCite.

 

And of course there are the membership parties and galas and things like that so people can network, etc.

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RDA is having a couple of events this week for the charrette. On Thursday, we're meeting at 6 p.m. for a happy hour at Punk's Simple Southern Food in the new Hanover apartment building in Rice Village.

 

And on Saturday at 9 a.m. we'll have a site visit and walk around the Village. 

 

 

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Well looks like I won't be going to this :/ I have another obligation for a friend which will take up the whole weekend. I'll probably come to see the results on Monday though!

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Sadly I wasn't able to attend :/ I'm sure it was very productive though. I'm wondering when they will post the results.

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