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Imagining Complete Street Initiatives

In the College Park Neighborhood of Orlando, Florida

Imagining Complete Street Initiatives

Landscape architecture firm Dix.Hite + Partners created renderings to show how a certain neighborhood could be changed to be safer, more user-friendly and more attractive to residents and visitors.

Dix.Hite + Partners, a landscape architecture firm in the Orlando, Florida suburb of Longwood, recently completed a marketing initiative - going out into the local community with renderings of popular public spaces and talking about their possibilities with residents - essentially looking at how spaces could be better utilized to maximize their potential.

Taking a cue from PARK(ing) Day, the team, "wanted to portray an implementable concept that would serve to improve Edgewater Drive, utilizing complete street initiatives, and its centerpiece space, Albert Park."

They recognized the attainments of the 2009 Edgewater Vision Plan but attempted "to explore ideas that could go beyond the plan in order to create an authentically vibrant main street environment true to the College Park neighborhood."

So over the course of seven days, Dix.Hite + Partners designed, fabricated, and painted a mobile, temporary installation showing before and after scenes of various views of the neighborhood, and spoke to hundreds of people from all walks of life; asking questions and getting feedback.

The team's ideas included: giving Albert Park more interaction with its surroundings by blurring the edges between the park and the adjacent sidewalks; elevating the intersection of Edgewater and Vassar to create a flush street condition - making it a venue for street festivals while providing traffic calming and slower speeds; creating separate bike paths to produce a safer, more practical route; adding dining and shopping opportunities to the park, as well as artful elements that could serve as signage, seating, interactive play and visual attractions; and narrowing Edgewater Drive, allowing more space for people on foot and bicycle to shop and dine.

"Our team has an innate desire to better our world, and the 'What If' initiative allowed us to impact our community in a unique way," said David Hoppes, PLA, principal, Dix.Hite + Partners. "Engaging community members in creating a healthier, more accessible and more prosperous public realm helped us generate new ideas that will ultimately allow us to impact Central Florida at an even higher level."

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November 12, 2019, 5:06 pm PDT

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