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Environmental Studies

The Build a City Workshop: City Planning Made Fun

October 13, 2011

  • Students talk about their cities in the Build a City Workshop.  Photo by James Rojas.
    Students talk about their cities in the Build a City Workshop. Photo by James Rojas.

Undergraduate Campus

On Monday, October 10, Lewis & Clark students, faculty, staff, alumni, and guests took part in a special workshop held as part of the 14th Annual Environmental Affairs Symposium: Citisphere.  James Rojas, an urban planner and the founder of the Latino Urban Forum, led this group of beginning city planners in constructing planned spaces out of hair rollers, pieces of yarn, Lincoln Logs, corks, bottle caps, and much more.

The workshop was aimed at cutting directly to what people desire in cities by first allowing people to build what they would want in their own individual space and later by adding individual spaces together and building upon them.  By actually doing city planning, the participants got to know how to plan spaces in a more relevant way and personal way than they would if they’d been in a lecture about technical parts of city planning.

Monday’s workshop brought visions of spider web supported bridges, water canals as major transportation routes, self-referential monuments, aliens from outer space, geodesic domes, breweries, and universities.  Themes of environmental justice, responsible resource management, and alternative transportation kept the newly formed cities bound.  

Click here to see the slideshow from Monday’s workshop.

Click here to read more about James Rojas and his work with the Latino Urban Forum.

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