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GOOD IdeasForCities in St. Louis — Creative Teams Deadline Tomorrow

January 5, 2012 Events/Meetings, Planning & Design Comments Off on GOOD IdeasForCities in St. Louis — Creative Teams Deadline Tomorrow

GOOD Magazine is bringing their IdeasForCities event to St. Louis on Thursday March 8th but the team registration deadline is tomorrow:

GOOD Ideas for Cities is coming to St. Louis! Apply here to be chosen as a creative team for the event. Selected teams will be paired with a challenge issued by a local urban leader, and work with that leader to create a potential solution. The teams will present their solution at the event in front of a live audience, engage in a discussion with their urban leader and GOOD Ideas for Cities editor Alissa Walker, and have their work showcased on GOOD.is

Answers to questions you may have:

  •  A team can consist of as many people as you want, but only one or two people can present at the event
  • All team members must live and work in the St. Louis metropolitan area
  • Team members can work at different firms, or all at the same firm
  • You must be able to be at the event Thursday, March 8 in order to participate
  • We will contact selected teams shortly after the deadline
  • Deadline is January 6, more details here http://www.good.is/post/good-ideas-for-cities-is-coming-to-portland-and-st-louis/

One reason St. Louis was selected this year, along with Portland OR, is editor Alissa Walker grew up in St. Louis.

St. Louisans groan when local, creative 20-somethings take their talents elsewhere. But the fact that 1995 Parkway West grad Alissa Walker moved to Los Angeles may be a boost for our town. (St. Louis Beacon — article highly recommended!) 

I look forward to seeing teams tackle their assigned challenge. UrbanReviewSTL, along with numerous other media outlets in St. Louis, is serving as a media partner for this event.

– Steve Patterson


Sustainability Summit Featured Majora Carter

Last month I attended a two day sustainability summit. The keynote speaker was the inspiring Majora Carter from the South Bronx NY.

ABOVE: Majora Carter opens the Sustainability Summit at the Missouri Botanical Gardens

Carter’s TED profile explains why she is important:

Majora Carter is a visionary voice in city planning who views urban renewal through an environmental lens. The South Bronx native draws a direct connection between ecological, economic and social degradation. Hence her motto: “Green the ghetto!”

With her inspired ideas and fierce persistence, Carter managed to bring the South Bronx its first open-waterfront park in 60 years, Hunts Point Riverside Park. Then she scored $1.25 million in federal funds for a greenway along the South Bronx waterfront, bringing the neighborhood open space, pedestrian and bike paths, and space for mixed-use economic development.

Her success is no surprise to anyone who’s seen her speak; Carter’s confidence, energy and intensely emotional delivery make her talks themselves a force of nature. (The release of her TEDTalk in 2006 prompted Guy Kawasaki to wonder on his blog whether she wasn’t “every bit as good as [Apple CEO] Steve Jobs,” a legendary presenter.)

Carter, who was awarded a 2005 MacArthur “genius” grant, served as executive director of Sustainable South Bronx for 7 years, where she pushed both for eco-friendly practices (such as green and cool roofs) and, equally important, job training and green-related economic development for her vibrant neighborhood on the rise. Since leaving SSBx in 2008, Carter has formed the economic consulting and planning firm the Majora Carter Group, to bring her pioneering approach to communities far outside the South Bronx. Carter is working within the cities of New Orleans, Detroit and the small coastal towns of Northeastern North Carolina. The Majora Carter Group is putting the green economy and green economic tools to use, unlocking the potential of every place — from urban cities and rural communities, to universities, government projects, businesses and corporations — and everywhere else in between.

“We could not fail to be inspired by Majora Carter’s efforts to bring green space for exercise to the South Bronx. We need more ideas like these to bring solutions to minority communities.”


Most likely you weren’t at this summit to here her speak. Her presentation was an updated version of her excellent TED presentation, well worth 20 minutes:


Over a decade ago Carter founded Sustainable South Bronx:

Sustainable South Bronx (SSBx) has been championing hope and opportunity for the people of the South Bronx and other urban communities since 2001. Our unique and comprehensive approach delivers integrated economic and environmental solutions, resulting in more prosperous and revitalized communities.

  • We specialize in pairing economic and environmental solutions.
  • We prepare workers for jobs in the growing green collar field while laying the groundwork for healthier urban communities.
  • We inspire the members of our community to improve their economic conditions, and back it up with education and job training.
  • We’re public advocates, determined to provide a strong voice for our neighbors.

We accomplish the following aims through innovative Green Collar Workforce Training, Environmental Education, and Community Greening Initiatives:

  • Attacking rampant un- and under-employment in a community where nearly 30% of the population is unemployed.
  • Creating access to jobs with living wages that offer opportunities for growth.
  • Adding to the growing (local and national) green-collar workforce.
  • Increasing residents’ consciousness of the community’s environmental degradation.
  • Raising local awareness of the benefits of greening the community, and the many opportunities for citizen participation.
  • Remediating environmental threats, through the activities of BEST and BEST for Buildings trainees and FabLab participants.
  • Developing awareness of Environmental Justice issues, so workers and other residents can mobilize to protect and preserve their community.

Carter isn’t anti-development and says she has embraced her “inner capitalist” which has allowed her to bring sustainable projects to the South Bronx. Sustainable from an economic perspective, creating profit for investors and employing members of the community, sustainable from an environmental perspective by using green materials and techniques rather than the status quo. Hopefully we will see some real change in St. Louis.

– Steve Patterson


Numerous Venues Add Variety To NYE 2012

December 31, 2011 Events/Meetings, Featured 2 Comments

All over this city exciting venues will help ring in 2012.

ABOVE: Patrons leaving an event at the Peabody

A quick review of the Riverfront Times New Year’s Eve Guide shows we have lots of choices tonight, although some places may be sold out at this point.

No matter what you do tonight please be responsible. What are you doing tonight?

– Steve Patterson


Urbanists & Preservationists Will Support Pevely Dairy Today

ABOVE: The historic Pevely Dairy maintains the building line at both Grand & Chouteau. Click image for my post from last month

The Preservation Board usually meets on the 4th Monday of each month but due to the holidays will instead meet tonight. On the agenda is Saint Louis University’s proposal to replace the historic structures with a lawn. And probably a fountain.

The conclusion of the staff report (see agenda):

The proposed subsequent construction of the Ambulatory Care Center cannot be evaluated at the time these comments were prepared and needs to be considered once presented at the Preservation Board meeting. The Cultural Resources Office recommends that the Preservation Board approve the demolition of the milk plant at 3626‐80 Chouteau and the garage at 1101 Motard, as the loss of these Merit buildings would have an acceptable effect on the urban design and the streetscape. The Cultural Resources Office also recommends that the Preservation Board uphold the denial of the demolition of the office building as it is a sound, High Merit resource and has reuse potential, and the iconic smokestack. These two structures on the parcel with the address 1001‐03 S. Grand, are prominent in the streetscape and their loss would have a noticeable effect on the physical fabric of the neighborhood and urban design.

Many have expressed the viewpoint the corner structure and smokestack occupy a tiny portion of the total site and therefor do not impede plans for new construction on the rest of the site. I’d love to see a drawing with Saint Louis University’s proposed building superimposed over the corner structure and smokestack.

– Steve Patterson


Walk The Path The Homeless Do, Saturday 11/19

For those of you that think the homeless have it easy, with meals and other services handed to them, have I got the event for you!

To conclude National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week The Bridge takes you on a walk for a couple of hours:

The Bridge invites you to the 4th Annual Walking Home event on Saturday, November 19

Doors open at 9:00 a.m, Event starts at 10:00

Lunch following The Walk

Music by The St. Louis Big Band

Experience a small part of the journey traveled every day by hundreds of residents of downtown St. Louis who are currently without a home.

Walk in their shoes. Hear their stories.

Learn how you can make a difference.

The Walk is a no-fee event. Free-will donations are welcome.

ABOVE: The Olive St entry to The Bridge, click for map.

Lunch is provided after the walking tour, donations are accepted but not required. This event will take place rain or shine! Parking is available but the #10 Gravois/Lindell MetroBus has a stop at 16th & Olive. Numerous other bus lines are nearby as is MetroLink light rail (equal distance from Union Station & Civic Center stations).

– Steve Patterson