Neighborhood Sustainability

MUD students honored by Missouri Chapter of the APA

Posted by Katherine Welsch October 23, 2014

The West End Neighborhood Sustainability Plan, produced by Master of Urban Design students from the Sam Fox School, is the recipient of this year's Outstanding Student Project Award from the Missouri Chapter of the American Planning Association.

The plan was produced for the spring 2014 course Contemporary Practices of Sustainable Urbanism, taught by associate professor John Hoal, with Colleen Xi Qiu (MArch/MUD12, MSAS13) serving as a teaching assistant. Students were challenged to analyze St. Louis' West End neighborhood—which faces high rates of foreclosure, vacancy, and crime but has been spurred by recent revitalization efforts—and envision its potential to foster a more sustainable community.

Through in-depth site investigations and analysis, students meticulously examined nine elements of sustainability systems for the neighborhood: History & Governance; Mobility, Connectivity & Transportation; Climate & Energy; Neighborhood Form & Building Typology; Public Realm & Open Space; Food & Neighborhood Services; Demographics, Equity & Safety; Blue, Gray & Green Infrastructure; and Neighborhood Economy. They defined and mapped out issues of existing conditions for each element, allowing them to reveal ongoing sustainability efforts and propose new policies and design initiatives as improvement opportunities.

The West End Neighborhood Sustainability Plan has provided the neighborhood with an unprecedented level of comprehensive documentation on sustainability. The hope is for this research to serve as the basis for future efforts to build a sustainable community by integrating infrastructure, public transit, housing, jobs, public space, amenities, and cultural arts.

The following MUD students worked on the plan, which was honored at the MO-APA annual meeting in mid-October: Kirti Ahluwalia, Matthew Bernstine, Zachary Carson, Carolyn Creemers, Sachin Daga, Zhe Fu, Kirsten Goedeker, Andrew Houston, Courtney Johnson, Yifan Li, Yuan Liu, Taokai Ma, Thuy-Tien Mac, Elizabeth Miller, Yiming Pan, Deena Saeed, Yang Su, Xu Zhang, Wenjing Zhu, and Zheng Zhu.