Payette will be hosting its annual Day of Service on Monday January 20th, 2020, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. This is a wonderful opportunity to support a variety of community organizations through design excellence, utilizing our staff’s time and creative abilities. Last Friday December 6th, participating community partners and their teams attended a kick off meeting at our office in preparation for the Day of Service.
This year, we received many great proposals and are pleased to announce six selected projects. These six projects are located throughout the greater Boston area (map below).
The MLK Day of Service is an exciting event at Payette, when people from different roles or teams come together to work on projects that serve local communities. This year 56 people have volunteered to participate, making up 34% of the firm. The Day of Service also provides a great opportunity for young designers to take on leadership roles. Each eight to nine member team includes Payette staff members from different groups throughout the office, including:
Operations / Administration
The six projects cover a wide range of design typologies, varying from urban planning to interior renovation to landscape design. Below is a summary of the projects for the Day of Service this year:
#1 The Overpass Under Way | North Adams, MA
Capture and revitalize the space below the overpass to create a place of community gathering, creative place-making, and connectivity between the city’s major cultural institution and the downtown economy.
#2 Tim White Way Path | West Roxbury, MA
Improve a city path to make it a welcoming space to residents and visitors of all ages and create a prototype for a system of pocket parks along the commercial length of Center St. to enhance private and public green spaces
#3 Nature Inspired Maker Space, Design Workshop & Art Studio | Canton, MA
Transform an underutilized space into a cutting edge and innovative exhibit, makerspace, and design studio to attract new visitors.
#4 The Green Median Project | Grove Hall, MA
Explore ideas for landscaping a median to meet the aesthetic desires of the community and improve sustainability.
#5 Cultural District Asset Map | Somerville, MA
Develop a Cultural District Asset Map for the proposed Cultural District of East Somerville and help identify areas of opportunity for creative place-making and future streetscape improvement.
#6 One-Bedroom Apartment Conversion | Somerville, MA
Renovate two floors of a six-story building into one-bedroom apartments to provide homes for over 100 low-income seniors and disabled.
The MLK Day of Service provides us with great opportunities to use our creative skills to solve the needs of different community groups. It inspires us to think and push our design boundaries further. As architects, we constantly think about our role in influencing the living environment around us. Working on projects of different scale and with different user groups raises interesting questions for discussion:
What is an architect’s role in creating an impact on local communities?
How can public space shape the culture of a neighborhood?
How can the design of the city scape improve the experience of the residents and visitors?
How can urban planners influence the future development of a city?
In the coming weeks we are excited to see the design solutions teams generate and look forward to discussions with community partners and the audience at large around the questions posed above, among other topics.