• Rebuilding a block at the heart of the city

    Saving historic facades and modernizing buildings were key to revitalizing an important downtown square.
    Pittsburgh’s Market Square was historically a bustling hub of locals and street merchants at the heart of downtown. Heavy cast iron buildings and fire-brick masonry gave the neighborhood a unique architectural charm. But by 2000, most stores that front the square had closed. Crumbling facades added...Read more
  • Grassroots public art connects people, past and present

    Today, many hundreds of the city’s horse rings are adorned with small horses and the like, placed by countless, random individuals playing their own small role in something larger than themselves.
    There’s nothing new about the subject of today’s post. In fact, that’s kind of the point. It’s an ongoing grassroots public art initiative that simply exists, and has for quite some time. Many have had the pleasure of experiencing it but many others have not. That’s the nature of artistic cultural...Read more
  • The walkable, urban world of Pokemon

    The game celebrates art, architecture, and culture, so businesses near cultural landmarks have a better chance of having PokéStops, which is what you need to be able to place a lure.
    “Mom, I need to walk 10k today,” coming from my 11-year old this morning almost gave me whiplash, as I turned to look at him to ensure an alien wasn’t inhabiting his body. In fact, there was one, if you view Pokémon as other-worldly. The playful new video game, Pokémon GO, is distracting kids and...Read more
  • Creative placemaking: Knowing when to get out of the way

    It seems everywhere I turn lately I stumble my way into a conversation on creative placemaking — people looking at the activation of public space as a way to further their personal and collective passions and pursuits. It’s heartening. I’m a firm believer that our taking of emotional ownership over...Read more