Docstoc

Power of Place_ OSH_ April 2 Notes Exec Summary

Document Sample
Power of Place_ OSH_ April 2 Notes Exec Summary Powered By Docstoc
					                      The Power of Place in Connecticut
                          A Community Conversation
                April 2, 2014 / Debrief Discussion April 10, 2014
                               The Old State House

Summary:

The Power of Place conversations involve a lot of moving parts – from facilitator
training, to post conversation debriefing, to note takers reports and live tweets of the
introduction and commentary.

One comment stated simply that “the upcoming workshops will be thematic. Merging the
results to get us to a placemaking vision?

Below are highlights from the various components of the process – for the 1st Power of
Place in Connecticut discussion.

Problems, Prospects & Possibilities:
(all bullet points derived from table or debriefing discussions among 100+/-
participants)

Need to Foster Exploration & Discovery among residents. We don’t our way around
enough for a state this size:
 The invisibility of CT’s treasurers…increasing their visibility is a reason to explore
   other places, e.g., through trails
 need for trails and contexts that get folks out and exploring where they are

Need to Foster State Pride and a Welcoming Attitude:
    Some places in CT are not very welcoming to newcomers, others are
    People in CT have pride in their community, but not pride in the state
    Lack of boosterism; we don’t think we are best at anything except basketball
    People in our state don’t think about “going to CT” for fun, adventure, culture.
    Need to build forward-looking positive narratives. Need to tell stories that others
       can engage with. Narratives connect people and build place.
    Change of attitude of residents toward tourists/visitors (we aren’t friendly enough)

Need to Counter Geographical & Cultural Fragmentation:
    Fragmentation of state: one participant said most fragmented place ever been
    People are proud of their town, but don’t have such a sense of the whole state.
       Parochial, fragmented perspective and world view…. no regional perspective.
    Big grandiose projects aren’t what is needed – lots of small things are what is
       needed
    CT Culture is Car Culture & Car Culture is Not Social
      Silos.... The lack of mechanisms which actively foster inter and intra-sector
       collaborations.

What Creates a Strong Sense of Place:
   Young people want sense of place where they can walk for a beer, to the
      bookstore. Mystic—restaurants, stores, independent bookstore.
   Historic preservation is critical to sense of place-- Boston is Faneuil hall, etc.
   Growing up in the ‘50’s through ‘70’s – neighbors watched children. Children
      given more freedom to roam and explore.
   Churning towns are the towns that make way for new things. Sense that standard
      rules and relationships can be set aside. Requires trust in people.
   Land and landmarks are guideposts. …Landmarks create dimension, color and
      meaning – emotionally, intellectually, and spiritually.

Why a Sense of Place Matters:
  Great places breed intense interconnectivity.
  Exploring – and a sense of curiosity – are at the center of discovery – both of place
    and self.
  A sense of community emanates from a strong sense of place – held by both
    individuals and the group.
  Faith and trust are more likely to result if people are properly in communion with
    place. A strong sense of place is an anchor ... And essential ingredient of social
    cohesion.

Need to Strengthen Neighborhoods and Counter the Effects of Car Culture:
  Today’s focus on magnet schools has removed neighborhood schools as geographic
    hubs, to the detriment of neighborhood connectivity.
    Bring back neighborhood schools
    Welcoming parks, community gathering places that were welcoming and invite
       exploration.
Connecticut Assets & Advantages:
    Places that are nearly perfect lose the excitement of solving problems
    Cultural assets and architecture are intact in the cities
    Culture, arts, intellectual climate, and access to all three.
    Chance to have an impact “make a difference.”
    Highlight the intimate connections between culture and nature in our places.

Good Ideas:
   Learning about the history of Connecticut deepened my sense of place.
   Contribution is welcomed because not too big a place
   Develop compelling day-trip itineraries connected to history and architecture;
      thematic, like with barn trail, freedom trail, etc.
   Connecticut education to engage students with cultural resources and history of
      this place
   Airport is gateway to CT (there are other gateways too) and doesn’t seem to be
      used to promote us very much at all.
      Commission artists to design exteriors and partial interiors for 5% of the State
       buses…. capture something uniquely CT in their designs. A focus would be on
       encouraging interaction of the riders with unexpected stuff and stories about CT
      Capture the story generating potential of the CT Open House Day
   

PROCESS NOTES HIGHLIGHTS:

NOTES FROM MARCH 24TH FACILITATOR/NOTE TAKER TRAINING
Amy Wynn, Bill Hosley, Ronna Reynolds, Casey Pickett, Helen Higgins, Kristina
Newman-Scott, Kip Bergstrom (Facilitator/Note Taker)

Great places are places that enable exploration and discovery
 Much of our formative experience of place was about exploration, discovering
   ourselves through exploring our places
 How are we engaging today’s young people who are exploring today’s places?
 What mechanisms would nurture exploration of place?
 How to get people out of the virtual world into authentic places?
 How do we use digital technology to get people to explore the real world?
 The invisibility of CT’s treasurers…increasing their visibility is a reason to explore
   other places, e.g., through trails

Places need to be welcoming
    The places that shaped us were welcoming/gave us a sense we belong there…they
       seemed to say to us: THIS PLACE IS FOR YOU
    Some places in CT are not very welcoming to newcomers, others are
    To be welcoming, a place has to love itself
    We need to stop focusing on creating shiny new stuff vs. deepening our
       awareness/connectedness to things that are indigenous/already here

NOTES FROM MARCH 26TH FACILITATOR AND NOTE TAKER TRAINING
Matt Fleury, Ed Schmidt, Lisa Scails, Randy Fiveash, Tim Sullivan, Walter Woodward,
Fritz Jellinghaus, Margaret Bodell, Will Wilkins, Rod Frantz, Chalie King, Topher
Pollack, Kip Bergstrom (facilitator and note taker)

Making good places great
   People like to be asked to help… Are people invited to add value?
   Is there an opportunity to make a difference…is there a need for my contribution?
   Do I feel free to be the person that I am? Is there access by and inclusion of the
      “unseen population”?

Leadership
    Need to overcome indifference/apathy

Pride of Place
    People in CT have pride in their community, but not pride in the state
      Part of this is a New Englander’s natural reticence…Southerners are fiercely
       proud

Lack of welcoming
    New Englanders don’t want to pry…this gets misinterpreted as a culture of
       isolation
    We tend to do a lot of things by ourselves, in our back yards, in our cars…we
       need to overcome this by creating a strong public realm, with lots of events and
       festivals, and other opportunities for volunteering
    Being an outsider in someone else’s place… An outsider brings to a place the
       incredible gift of Beginner’s Mind
   
NOTES FROM MARCH 28TH FACILITATOR AND NOTE TAKER TRAINING
Christine Castonguay, Katherine Kane, Jody Blankenship, John Simone, Dan Forrest,
Lee Kuckro, Sally Whipple, Kip Bergstrom (facilitator and note taker)
Place is About Surprise
• The places that made us had an element of mystery, of discovery, of surprise
      Enhancing the Non-Car Experience
• We need to encourage creative redevelopment of mixed-use places with sidewalks and
street trees...fill empty store fronts...have lots of concerts and plays that encourage people
to come into places
• How to package the CT visitor experience for folks without a car?
• What about bikes?


Shaping Places from the Bottom Up
• The rediscovery of places has to be bottom up
• Shaping it for them is bad, having them shape it is good
Places are hubs of passion where like minded people work together on something that
matters to them.

Place is what you leave behind when you die.

If you were going 2 explain CT 2 someone - where would U take them & what would
you show

Capture the story generating potential of the CT Open House Day

When I have a relative visit - what unique thing do we want to show and tell

A graveyard can be public realm

the 3 upcoming workshops -be thematic Merge results to get to placemaking vision
#CTCultureTourism #placemaking CT – a marriage of nature & culture –places have
many stories, nuance makes state more complex



Highlights: Tweets from Power of Place Intro – April 2, 2014 @Old State House

#Placemaking #PowerofPlace #CommunityConversation #GovMalloy architecture in CT
greatly underappreciated #Norwich

#Placemaking #PowerofPlace #CommunityConversation #KipBergstrom - where our
souls inhabit the soil. Make a place and be made by it

#Placemaking #PowerofPlace #CommunityConversation #KipBergstrom stories of our
predecessors are etched in our buildings & what we leave behind

#Placemaking #PowerofPlace #CommunityConversation discussions in break out
sessions What places shaped you. How to nurture sense of place

#Placemaking #PowerofPlace #CommunityConversation need for trails and contexts that
get folks out and exploring where they are

#Placemaking #PowerofPlace #CommunityConversation challenge of being siloed -
incentives for collaboration

#Placemaking #PowerofPlace #CommunityConversation Place - is what you leave
behind when you die


Break Out Sessions:
Each group was asked to discuss:
      What places shaped you?
      What is it about that Place that helped shape you?
      How do we nurture sense of place, what are the opportunities for
       placemaking?

Table 2

John Simone (facilitator), Sally Whipple (note taker)
    In great places, people feel connected to one another, with good results
   When people feel connected, they feel safe, free, independent, proud, a part of
     something larger.
   We need to create structures for today’s young people so that they can feel the same
     freedom and independence that many adults felt as children.
        Great places breed intense interconnectivity.

Real neighborhoods are great places
  We should draw upon remembered neighborhood experiences to identify building
     blocks of great places.
  Waterbury is a city of neighborhoods where people self-identify by the areas they
     live in.
  Small Waterbury neighborhoods were the fabric of the city and downtown was the
     place that connected them. We used to be able to walk downtown in a city of
     100,000 people and have people call out, “How’s your mom?”
  Today’s focus on magnet schools has removed neighborhood schools as geographic
     hubs, to the detriment of neighborhood connectivity.

The benefits of authenticity
  Theme parks do not make great places. Great places emerge when people create
     something for themselves. If a place is authentic to those who created it and use it
     daily, it will be appealing to tourists.
  A great authentic place can make you feel like you’ve been transported to a
     different world.
What are some solutions?
    Downtown revitalization: Blue Back Square is a good example of a place that is
       now walkable.
    Consider the pros and cons of regionalism.
         We all compete against one another.
         Farmington Valley works together a lot with great success (health districts,
            bike trails).
    Bring back neighborhood schools

     From Table 3
     Helen Higgins & ?
      Challenges to Placemaking
      Lack of boosterism; we are not forward thinking; we don’t think we are best at
        anything except basketball
      Fragmentation of state: one participant said most fragmented place ever been;
      People in our state don’t think about “going to CT” for fun, adventure, culture.
      We do not have a lot of statewide institutions; no major city; no unifying entity



     Table 4
      Casey Pickett – facilitator Bill Hosley - notetaker
      What places shaped you?
      Dad was interested in place – loved Sunday drives – dad showed us all over the
        place in CT
      New Haven = grandfather was pastor in a church there; walked house to house, to
        go downtown was a big event – Liggetts for ice cream – still there.
     
      What is it about that Place that helped Shape You?
      Boston – strong sense of civic pride
      local identity, to have a name – a place where people know your name
      foodways- Caribbean, New Haven defined by neighborhoods –with identities.
      Muthersbaugh – experience telling people why I like CT – always said – CT is
       perfect location – topography, beaches, Litchfield Hills. CT River - but so close
       to everything else – so much within reach
      proximity to NY & Boston a comfort rather than anxiety
      Living in Vermont in the 70s inspired my sense of a place as living history and of
       the importance of the natural and cultural environment. These are also qualities I
       value here
   
      How do we nurture sense of place, what are the opportunities?
      hard for single people to connect – for dating – if you’re single its hard to find
       social networks
      Older folks talk about move out to reduce taxes. Need to make it conducive to
       create businesses. Starting a business here is very hard – our infrastructure is bad.
      Pickett – dating – lived in NY during 20s, now 30 w 2 kids – friends school,
       instant community –
      capitalize on things we’re good at.
      Places that are nearly perfect lose the excitement of solving problems
      White – 169 towns a challenge balkanized and fragmented
      cross disciplinary conversations – connecting the arts, preservation
   
TABLE 5:
Charles King (Facilitator), Tilly Hatcher (Note Taker),

What makes a community or lack thereof?
   Smiling at and speaking to people I pass on the sidewalk
   Pomfret grew me. Everyone knew each other. All were role models.
   A place to explore my passions and values and find connections with the passions
     and values of the place
   Learning about the history of Connecticut deepened my sense of place.
   Need to avoid homogenization

Empowered to create opportunity for self and others
   Contribution is welcomed because not too big a place
   Space to try out own ideas

Adversity can also lead to community building and problem solving
    Finding press coverage insufficient, 30 great cultural institutions of Connecticut
      have come together to make a magazine – Connecticut Explored
    grew up in place where leadership stifles change – realized not true of all places –



Table 6
Summary of ideas/observations
Frustrated by community fragmentation and CT parochialism which results in lack of
pride for the whole state, fear of visiting diverse communities. 169 towns aggravates,
Promote the diversity of our communities rather than ignoring or viewing difference as a
barrier.

Place becomes what you make, not where you’re from

Need to maintain the sense of authenticity—that the place is real, accessible size,
walkable. Scale is important. Don’t confuse the building with the place.

Need to build forward-looking positive narratives. Need to tell stories that others can
engage with. Narratives connect people and build place.

THE PLACES that made you
Raising family in New Haven – sense of community, friends, liveliness, connection

Community is not place-based but profession-based. Place becomes what you make, not
where you’re from

Young people want sense of place where they can walk for a beer, to the bookstore.
Mystic—restaurants, stores, independent bookstore. West Hartford is too canned, too
family oriented.

Where you’re from makes you. He grew up in the south and the tradition of southern
hospitality prepped him for the hospitality business. Also learned the importance of
tradition – who you are, where you came from, what it really means. To be true to
yourself and your family you have to be true to tradition –storytelling, family stories.

What about the place helped you shaped you?

Creative communities –like New Haven -- have an openness, opportunity. Cheap studio
space, dialog, activity is organic. Yale helps create an intellectual environ

HOW TO SELL THE ATTRACTIONS IN CT
Challenge of siloed experience. In Stamford, our neighbors speak 56 languages, but we
don’t all live in that community. You can be living in a place and have no clue about all
the other worlds right around you.

In Fairfield County many towns look a certain way – then you go to Bridgeport,
incredible diversity, the weight of all that layered onto that town

People are proud of their town, but don’t have such a sense of the whole state. Parochial,
fragmented perspective and world view…. no regional perspective.
Historic preservation is critical to sense of place-- Boston is Faneuil hall, etc. Hartford’s
old buildings gone.


TABLE 7

Can pick up a sense of the past in Connecticut

Cultural assets and architecture are intact in the cities

Need to invest in what we have and not put culture in the suburbs

Lots in Connecticut that isn’t well known

Develop compelling day-trip itineraries connected to history and architecture; thematic,
like with barn trail, freedom trail, etc.

Big grandiose projects aren’t what is needed – lots of small things are what is needed

Table 8

Our group had several members in the 25-35 age demographic, at least two of whom had
made conscious decisions to move to Connecticut from other places. As a result , our
questions focused on the specific draws of place, and factors in their decision to come
here.

Culture, arts, intellectual climate, and access to all three.

Chance to have an impact “make a difference.”

Connecticut is a place with “small, deep ponds” of artistry, creativity, and intellectual
capacity.

A place where a newcomer can acquire a sense of “belonging through participation”

• the 169 towns are both a plus (diversity) and a minus (parochial, fragmentation,
isolation, lack of critical mass.)


Opportunity: Connecticut education to place engage students with cultural resources and
history of this place

TABLE 9:
Lee Kuckro (Facilitator), Dan Forrest (Note Taker)


CT Culture is Car Culture & Car Culture is Not Social
Surprised when I moved to CT and learned that “we don’t take the train…anywhere”

Trains, buses, etc. are social – shoulder-to-shoulder relationship.

Surrounded by conversation and potential conversation. Eavesdropping is a window into
local culture and people.
Rich transportation options encourage exploration and reward curiosity

San Francisco is not just rich in cultural sites and places – those places are readily
discoverable AND accessible to people.

Highlight the intimate connections between culture and nature in our places.

Midwestern small cities are islands in fields – central courthouse and downtown pattern.
You discover the horizon at the outskirts where everything changes.
CT is more chaotic and challenging – continuous landscapes.


Growing up in the ‘50’s through ‘70’s – neighbors watched children. Children given
more freedom to roam and explore. Watched, but monitoring was not hovering.

Sense that children could manage themselves on weekends and that’s when discovery
happened.

Requires trust in community – sense that children are protected throughout our
neighborhoods.

Have to trust enough to let go – allow children to take risks and learn from mistakes.

Shared experience of discovery makes it “stickier”.

Sense that people can engage meaningfully with decision makers and BECOME decision
makers.

Churning towns are the towns that make way for new things. Sense that standard rules
and relationships can be set aside. Requires trust in people.


Mistake to see village/neighborhood focus as solely detrimental – it is who we are.

Create chances for each town to invite others to experience what makes them unique.

Table 11 – Ronna Reynolds

      Exploring – and a sense of curiosity – are at the center of discovery – both of
       place and self.
      Belonging to a space creates identity.

      Memories are intertwined with place – both general and specific. Important
       figures in our life – Family, friends, and schoolmates are imprinted onto the
       backdrop of place.

      A sense of community emanates from a strong sense of place – held by both
       individuals and the group.

      Land and landmarks are guideposts. Land is foundational to our …definition of
       space and boundary. Landmarks create dimension, color and meaning –
       emotionally, intellectually, and spiritually.

      Faith and trust are more likely to result if people are properly in communion with
       place. A strong sense of place is an anchor ... And essential ingredient of social
       cohesion.

Key Challenges
    Silos of activity.... The lack of mechanisms which actively foster inter and intra-
      sector collaborations.

      The first challenge dis-enables us in the place making sector – from developing a
       "critical mass" which attracts awareness, participation, and support.

      ….need for multilevel strategic planning to engage a variety of different
       constituencies.

      Inadequate optimization of media platforms to elevate the Connecticut brand...
       With a unique and strong sense of place at the brands core.

Table 12 Kristina Newman Scott & Amy Wynn


What Place Shaped You?
      Taverns/Bars – places to congregate as a young adult
      Bike paths leading to exploration, offering a sense of freedom
      Ball parks – they each have town pride, steeped in history
      Welcoming parks, community gathering places that were welcoming and invited
       exploration.
What was it about the place that shaped you?
      Welcoming – inviting
      Sense of community
      Accessibility – getting there, “going” without difficulty
      Community pride and commitment to community
Key challenges and opportunities to Placemaking:
       Collaboration – the making of community; collective impact; shared pride
       Signage/information/marketing
       Opp: Airport is gateway to CT (there are other gateways too) and doesn’t seem to
        be used to promote us very much at all.
     Challenge: Change of attitude of residents toward tourists/visitors (we aren’t
        friendly enough)
Challenge: Accessibility – if our destinations were more accessible (transportation) to
our residents, they might actually have “regulars” coming, instead of mainly tourists

Highlights of Posted Note Readers Online Response:

Re. Table 9’s discussion of Social Transportation - What if the State commissioned
prominent artists to design exteriors and partial interiors for 5% of the State buses. Artists
could capture something uniquely CT in their designs. A focus would be on encouraging
interaction of the riders and unexpected stories or experiences in CT

NOTES FROM MARCH 28TH FACILITATOR AND NOTE TAKER TRAINING
Christine Castonguay, Katherine Kane, Jody Blankenship, John Simone, Dan Forrest,
Lee Kuckro, Sally Whipple, Kip Bergstrom (facilitator and note taker)
Place is About Surprise
• The places that made us had an element of mystery, of discovery, of surprise


Enhancing the Non-Car Experience
• We need to encourage creative redevelopment of mixed-use places with sidewalks and
street trees...fill empty store fronts...have lots of concerts and plays that encourage people
to come into places
• How to package the CT visitor experience for folks without a car?
• What about bikes?


Shaping Places from the Bottom Up
• The rediscovery of places has to be bottom up
• Shaping it for them is bad, having them shape it is good


Reflections from Robert Leaver, New Commons -
First Community Conversation on 4-2-14

Places are hubs of passion where like minded people work together on something that
matters to them.
Place is what gets inside the psyche/soul of people. When you are in a place that
matters...
     Sparks of curiosity fly; there is discovery of the unexpected; you are surprised
     Memories are evident
     Connections and access to choices are present
     People have faith that other people will do the right thing and not let you down

Place is what you leave behind when you die.

Highlights of Tweets from Debrief Among Facilitators – April 9th

#CTCultureTourism #Placemaking #CTPowerofPlace If you were going 2 explain CT 2
someone - where would U take them & what would you show

#CTCultureTourism #Placemaking #CTPowerofPlace Capture the story generating
potential of the CT Open House Day

#CTCultureTourism #Placemaking #CTPowerofPlace When I have a relative visit -
what unique thing do we want to show and tell

CTCultureTourism #Placemaking #CTPowerofPlace Broken Umbrella theater Co in
New Haven use local stories in theater

#CTCultureTourism #Placemaking #CTPowerofPlace A graveyard can be public realm

#CTCultureTourism #Placemaking #CTPowerofPlace will the 3 upcoming workshops -
be thematic? Merge results to get to placemaking vision

#CTCultureTourism #placemaking CT – a marriage of nature & culture – #DavidLeff
places have many stories, nuance makes state more complex

				
DOCUMENT INFO
Shared By:
Categories:
Tags:
Stats:
views:0
posted:5/21/2014
language:English
pages:14