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Posts tagged ‘Placemaking’

A FREE Intro to Placemaking Course Series at HARP

Starting September 13th – a placemaking design course taught by Michael Cook. Don’t miss it!

From the City Repair blog:

Come learn the basic elements of placemaking, and become empowered to spread the word! After getting our basic overview of placemaking (what, why and how) along with discussions and group activities, class participants will learn how to give a basic City Repair slideshow. Also, we’ll provide those who show up with training in how to give a tour of past VBC sites.

Each class features Michael’s entertaining and informative power point presentations, group discussion, and a hands-on activity to feed your creative soul.

With Michael moving to the mid West this winter, we’re needing to grow a crop of placemaking superheros. The free Tuesday night course this fall will be focused on these skills.


What : Introduction to Placemaking

When : Tuesdays, 6:45-8PM, Sept 13 – Nov 1, 2011

Where : HARP, 2926 NE Flanders, lower level (enter from rear)

Who: final class led by Michael Cook before he moves!!!

Tentative course topics:

• Social Context and Indigenous Roots of Community Placemaking

• Scope of Placemaking

Universal patterns we draw from, insights for creating human-scale places in our neighborhoods. Understanding and contrasting the particulars of community placemaking. Understanding it’s reasons, scope, and goals and why it works. Grokking Placemaking.

• Gatherings and Group Process

Neighborhood outreach, meeting prep, basics of facilitation, decision making models (and their place), overcoming challenges, nurturing leadership.

• Social Capital and Community Asset Mapping

Seeing the Matrix. Seeing the Village. Understanding social capital and its stages. Making and utilizing community oriented asset maps. Building trust and nurishing potential.

• Collaborative Design

Identifying values, determining functions, setting priorities, while maintaining inclusivity in the design.

• Placemaking Modalities (Natural Building, Permaculture, Community Art, Community Building)

Models of inspiration. The many ways in which placemaking manifests and how we can make our places more sustainable. (Share your own ideas!)

• Making it Happen: Community Workparties

Pre-event site prep, materials, volunteer coordinator, education and site leaders, safety, having fun.

• Celebration and the Future

The importance of celebrating work, process and progress. Storytelling (mythmaking), traditions of upkeep.

Time for a village building rhyme!

Broken glass everywhere!
Mosaics on the sidewalk
Kids playing foursquare
If it ain’t about my hood ya know we just don’t care

Localities by the score
Get tight and unite next door
The volunteer core got a sing-alive vibe word is born
Rhizomes find home in your rhyme-zone, singularities punching
Compass Junction, the hacked triple-stack laced the function
Heads bumping


Saint Johns crew with the biggest and the baddest
Backyard bamboo lattice with the asset map status
I’m in the attic with the raddest and the bombest
Planet Repair Insta-troupe
Brewin’ up a sick tight song list

Shit hits the fan, the plan: my neighborhood glue
Canned foods for land feuds in the 2012 Coup
When sibyl-eyed minds redesign time for human truth
And poets float notes to civilized youth:
Placemake the blank space, show the globe slowly
You’re free So are we, pounding feet into adobe

Medicine is the weapon
Intersections spinning out the needles
Love-kissed alchemists and music for the people
The myth cried insurgence
Emerging from observance
Collides citywide in the Indra-net convergence
We stomp grounds and pound footprint in solid rock
You got it locked
Terra- forming like ant hives
On my hottest block



Written by the editor of Village Alchemy, Joe La Sac.

How do we live in a modern-day village?

Working on this movie has lead me to ask many questions, both of myself and those I am interviewing. Mainly, why is something like Placemaking important?

You would think I would have that answered before making the movie, however, that is, I suppose, why I am making the film.Some might even ask, “What is Placemaking?” – the short answer is the reclaiming of spaces and turning them into places where people can experience a deeper connection and sense of enjoyment. It may come in the form of a bench, a kiosk, a garden, or an intersection that is painted by neighbors.


Driving on the South East side of Portland yesterday, I passed one of the many cob benches that have been built during the last 11 years of the VBC. I saw a group of teenagers seeking refuge from the sun and sitting in the cool shade of the living roof which covered the bench. Seeing their smiles and the pleasure in having a place to hang out made me understand what is being done here.


More then just benches to sit on or pretty paintings in the streets, the projects of the Village Building Convergence leave a lasting legacy of community. It takes community to create them, to up-keep them, and to enjoy them. Providing more Places for people to gather and get to know each other helps lead to less crime in a neighborhood, less isolation, and less fear of the unknown neighbor.


The importances of a modern-day village go much deeper. And the steps to get there are the focus of this movie. It is intended to be like a recipe book for other communities to cook up their own village magic. For more inspiration, please check out the movie when it is done! Follow along on the web site, or “Like” Village Alchemy on Facebook for up dates.

~ Hannah ~

Olympia Village Building Convergence!

This year we have been seeing many placemaking convergence pop up in the Northwest. This weekend — August 11th – 14th — Olympia, Washington is putting on their own Village Building Convergence.


Olympia Village Building Convergence


For more info go to the website for the Oly VBC –


The schedule as printed on


The Olympia Village Building Convergence will be taking place at Fertile Ground August 11-14. We will be hosting work parties during the day to transform the commons, and events during the evening to transform the community.

Work parties will be from 10a-5p each day of the OlyVBC… come for a few hours or the whole day, however much you would like to participate. Learn new skills, share your own, and meet some fine folks along the way.

Projects include:
• Community welcome gate
• Living roof for the cob pizza oven
• Intersection mandala painting
• Chicken tractor lounge

Evening events begin at 7p. The main event on Saturday night will cost a $5-$15 donation, all other evenings are free!

Thursday, August 11:
Compassionate Communication
Nonviolent communication workshop with Liv Monroe

Friday, August 12:
Food Security in the South Sound
Food Summit update with TJ Johnson

Saturday, August 13:
Main event! $5-$15
Mark Lakeman and Mighk Simpson of the Planet Repair Institute
Followed by music with the Erev Rav Klezmer Orchestra

Sunday, August 14:
Community celebration!
Come down to Fertile Ground and check out the energy, love and transformation

Mark Lakeman’s the 14-part series chronology of the City Repair Project

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