The Collaborative Community Design Initiative is founded on interdisciplinary problem-solving, community engagement, and broad-based partnerships that provide a model for new ways of acting in and thinking about our communities

iSLANDS

Collaborative Community Design Initiative No. 2

To support and strengthen communities across Houston the Collaborative Community Design Initiative (CCDI) brings together citizens, professionals in the fields of design, planning, real estate, and community development, elected officials, and faculty and students to work together through a yearlong partnership. The program, in partnership with four communities, is a compilation of activities that build on each other, and result in comprehensive community design tools and strategies. 

 

Each Initiative is focused on a specific design challenge and is completed in partnership with four Houston neighborhoods. The second Initiative, Islands, focused on re-thinking and re-connecting islands of singular land use and user groups in the communities of Alief, Golfcrest/Bellfort/Reveille, Greenspoint, and Mid-West. Islands are a product of too little planning, where development occurs piecemeal, one parcel at a time, disconnected from the surrounding context by form, use, parking, or users. Infrastructure contributes to this division, weaving through the city's backyard and providing little or no amenities to the adjacent landscape. The impact is that communities become fragmented, driving becomes the only reasonable choice for moving about, and single purpose land uses dominate the landscape, minimizing the diversity of uses and users that create active and sustainable communities.      

 

The project is sponsored through generous grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Houston Arts Alliance, and the Architecture Center Houston Foundation, with additional support from the Local Initiatives Support Corporation Houston, the Urban Land Institute Houston District Council, and the Gerald D. Hines College of Architecture at the University of Houston.  

Locations: Alief, Golfcrest-Bellfort-Reveille, Greenspoint, Mid-West


Design Team:  Susan Rogers, Rafael Longoria, Andrea Gonzales, Alex Lara, and Maria Oran


Student Team: Dennis Alvarez, Mervyn Austria, Jennifer Branham, Ross Charba, Zhu Chen, Mike Cutulle, Pratik Emon, Carolyn Glenn, Nahid Haimonty, Alejandro Lara, Kim McGrath, Janine Nunfio, Poonam Patel, Sana Rehman, John Rezsonya, Sidney San, Josh Sawyer, Jenny Seim, Courtney Widacki

2012