The 36-hour charette has come and gone, and we are beginning to understand the pros and cons of the decisions that we have made upon our site. Working with an interdisciplinary team of architects and a landscape designer, we were able to pursue some goals and develop an overall theme for site #1 and the Victory Hotel. Our plans to introduce a social club and enhance the arts in that area through the development just north of City Hall, and we began to think about the art trail in a broader context that would include linkage to the Smith Center for the Performing Arts and the Symphony Park development across the train tracks. We also thought of the site in a different way than usual- proposing the main circulation and activity to occur along the alleyway through activation of it.
The 36-hour design charette was exciting and difficult at the same time. It was exciting to go “full throttle” for a small period of time, but it became difficult not going too into designing the spaces already. The goal of solving what we wanted the site to do is what ultimately held us back from going too far, but it didn’t stop us from dipping our detail-brains into trying to make a space feel a certain way.
Moving forward, I am remaining on the Victory site because I feel it has the opportunity to become a great catalyst for the downtown region in moving people back there and spurring development along Main Street. I believe we have strong ideas and I am excited to push them further and see what this project can truly become. I am especially excited to see how the social club and alleyway act together to really draw people into the site and give the mayor something nice to look at from above.