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Placemaking: A Special Meeting with Special Guests

2013 March 16
by Michael
Click to download Poster

Click to download Poster

 What: General Meeting of the HPNA
When: Tuesday, March 26, 2013
  6:30 pm (Socializing)
  7:oo pm (Presentations)
Where:   Olmsted Lodge in Highland Park
 171 Reservoir Avenue, Rochester NY
Topic:   Placemaking in the Neighborhood and Rochester: with Special Guests:
Mike Governale & Bill Schwappacher   
Invited:  Everyone: Residents and General Public 


Was it all about a visit from the Tree Peddlers?  (Click for Larger Image)

Placemaking in the 1800s:
Was it all about a visit from the Tree Peddlers?
(Click for Larger Image)

At the next general meeting of the Highland Neighborhood Association, we will review  historic, recent and future efforts at Placemaking within our neighborhood and Rochester.    Along with the HPNA’s Michael Tomb,  two special Guest Speakers will share the story of their own efforts to create projects that enhance the Community’s quality of life

When did Placemaking come to the Highland Park Neighborhood?   The term may have first been used in this linked document , which repeats a definition from CityRepair.org :

“a multi-layered process within which citizens foster active, engaged relationships to the spaces which they inhabit, the landscapes of their lives, and shape those spaces in a way which creates a sense of communal stewardship and lived connection.” 

Placemaking: The Aerial View.  BoulevART 2012 captured by Pictometry

Placemaking: The Aerial View. BoulevART 2012 captured by Pictometry (Click for Larger )

But, while the word is so new that it is not yet in the dictionary (!), similar concepts and local accomplishments are at least 125 years old.   When a group of Rochester leaders decided to sidestep the political consensus, ignore popular myths, and create this city’s park system in 1888, they were surely practicing  “placemaking” in a grand fashion.    For if placemaking can also be defined as a grassroots effort to redesign the quality of life in the urban experience, then, yes,  they were far ahead of their times.

Speaking at this Meeting:

Mike Governale is a resident of Irondequoit, a father of two, and works for an ad agency in the High Falls neighborhood.  Mike regularly shares stories about local history and urban development on his web site, RochesterSubway.com. He considers a well-balanced transportation system central to civic progress, and in 2010 he founded a transit advocacy group called Reconnect Rochester. In 2012, Reconnect Rochester organized an event called ROC Transit Day as a way to encourage drivers to go car-free for one day. The 2nd annual ROC Transit Day will take place on Thursday, June 20, 2013.

Wide Water GardensBill Schwappacher is a Graphic Artist and owner of  HoliMoli Media. He is also a Community Leader with a distinguished resume that includes serving as President of the Upper Monroe Neighborhood Association until 2012 as well as current Director of the South East Area Coalition (SEAC).   Working within the UMNA, Bill  led efforts to create and sustain  Wide Water Community Gardens which is now the largest and most heavily used community garden in the City of Rochester.

Virtual Scrapbook of the Highland Park NeighborhoodMichael Tomb is a Software and Application Designer, Graphic Artist and owner of Informatica ECS, Inc.  He is also the  Communications Coordinator of the HPNA as well as the chair of it Arts & Cultural Team.  For the past few years, he has worked with the  Neighborhood Association and several of its teams on multiple projects related to Ellwanger & Barry Park, including the design of a sculpture  and kiosk as well as BoulevART 2012.  Michael also serves as the designer and webmaster of this site as well as the curator of The Virtual Scrapbook.



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