"People need to understand why we exist." - Tanya debose

Independence Heights Black Towns Matter Mural

Working in collaboration with Tanya Debose of the Independence Heights Redevelopment Council the CDRC brought together over 60 young designers, artists, and activists to plan, design, and implement the BLACK TOWNS MATTER street mural. The mural commemorates the powerful history of Independence Heights as the first Black Town in Texas. The mural was unveiled on Juneteenth 2020.

Summer 2020
University of Houston
College of Architecture

CDRC Project Team: Susan Rogers, Mario Lopez, Angelica Lastra, Cynthia Cruz, Maria Noguera, Katherine Polkinghorne

Independence Heights Redevelopment Council:

Tanya Debose

Special thanks to Marie Martinez for her generosity


Shata Abushaikha, Arica Bailey, Austin Baldwin, Samantha Callender, Camila Castro, Claudia Cepeda, Michael Chang, Ashley Chenevert, Ulises Contreras, Ariana Cuvelier, Desmond Davis, Krissy Diaz,

Dario De Leon, Answesha Dubey, Avnika Dubey, David Espinoza,

Luis Garcia, Brittany Griffin, Jeremy Griffin, Jonathon Griffin,

Rahma Hassan, Danielle Jones, Donna Kacmar, Maheen Khizar,

Terrain Little, Danielle Lossangoye, Cody King, Isabel Martinez,

Marie Martinez, Melvalean McLemore, Davone Morgan, Rami Namani, Khang Nguyen, Nhi Nguyen, Alejandro Nunez, Sheridan O’Neal, Daniela Olivera, Michael Ortega, Constanza Pena, Hung Pham,

Kristie Pham, Marcela Ramos, Eli Rebellon, Ana Sevilla, David Salas,

Jasmine Small, Cynthia Suarez, Florence Tang, Angela Tran,

Ben Tonthat, Nyx Valerdy, Fiama Villagrana-Ocasio,

Paula Villagrana-Ocasio, Ashley Villalta, Princess Villalta,

Charnice Williams, Lindsey Williams, Mario Yang

University of Houston NOMAS, Houston NOMA, Prairie View A&M University, Women in Architecture

Featured in: 

Houston Chronicle

Rice Design Alliance 

Photo Credits: @repfletcher, @faithxdanielle, @cgesbaileyplanning, @madmanmario, @iseenit_rubens