Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Ovid / Design Connect 2014

In Fall 2014, Design Connect took on a number of exciting projects. For the project below, a group of planning, architecture and engineering students got together with STEPS (Seneca Towns Engaging People in Solutions) to initiate and engage in a re-envisioning process for Ovid, New York. Below are some of the details of the project. Enjoy!

The Village of Ovid is located at the center of Seneca County, about 40 miles north of Ithaca.  Design Connect was tasked with helping the community to revision the village's main street after a fire destroyed several buildings in the spring of 2014.  The main Client was STEPS, who sought "expertise that will help residents envision what the neighborhood could look like and develop plans that may be able to be implemented in years to come."

The burned down building site.

The team started with the vacant lot at the center of the village that has since been cleared, and began collecting information and feedback from community members, business leaders, and municipality officials.

Community Meeting activities.
We held two community meetings in November at Ovid's municipal building.

Overall, community members spoke about the value of their village's character and history. Many people mentioned a need for youth resources and support for local businesses.

In the mapping activity, participants marked up large-size maps of central Ovid.  The team combined this information onto one map to provide an overview of where priorities lay geographically in the community.

Compilation of feedback from the community mapping session
From gathered feedback the team prepared a series of renderings in line with mentioned values to get people thinking about different types of streetscaping and landscape changes that might be possible with community backing.  These were then presented for feedback.

Concept street

Possible use for vacant lot.

Possible renewal ideas

November 18th Community Feedback meeting.

Feedback on macro design ideas.

At the end of the project the team prepared a report that will be left with STEPS and the village of Ovid.  We crafted this report with an aim of providing usable recommendations and funding sources.

Special thanks to STEPS' Theresa Lahr and Ave Bauder, the people of Ovid, and village of Ovid officials.