Co_creation a la LYNDSEY

Cherokee ComeUnity Hub

Architect Jessica Deem sketched a concept of what form the plaza could take

The Hub project was the fruit of a a community-wide charette held November 15, 2008.  This neighborhood-wide gathering, facilitated via the Open Space Technology technique  was prompted by Sister Jean Durel’s “Heart and Soul”-inspired neighborhood empowerment organizing and funded by The Incarnate Word Foundation .  In short, the charette produced three ideas voted on over two months by residents of Cherokee street neighborhoods via online and hardcopy ballots.  The concept for a public plaza garnered the most interest, and I became the coordinator for The Cherokee ComeUnity Hub.  Immediately the  Where? became a primary question; plaza supporters favored the empty lot across from Globe Drug at Texas and Cherokee, which was naturally used as the hang-out spot.  Energetically it already was a plaza.  From my point of view, creating an influx of traffic with architecture to shape the type of interaction could, with wisdom, invite the ‘traffic’ to step up or find another site.    But LRA lots require the alderman’s approval, and Ken O. was not a fan.   I wrote about the dilemma on CSt News: Says Who? And the RFT blogged the standstill too.   The project team suggested lots of in-motion experiments — from gardening on the lot to hosting temporary projects to test what variables we needed to learn about — action over theory.  Yet our alderman declined an invitation to the Incarnate Word mediation, and found no room compromise — insisting that he wanted to plant grass on the lot and wait until “someone” came along to build on it — in essence rejecting $25,000 and hundreds of professional volunteer hours.  Meanwhile, Incarnate Word retracted the funding, and the lot is still dirt.   Yeah for STL politics!!   I felt so much sadness about our inability as adult humans to connect on shared goals despite unique means of working toward them.  And in the big pic – - it made a lot of sense for the lot to function as ‘homebase’ for the current sidewalk/streetlamp renovation project.  And now with Globe Drug closed, what eventually fills that space will largely affect the fate of its neighbor.  Que sera sera……  I hold space for a righteous, quirky public space to grow up there in the perfect time . . . .

Notes from the first community design meeting on desired plaza qualities

I can be just as ridiculous as you! Dressed up 'canvassing' for the plaza talking to the Gravois Park president who wrote a smear letter claiming that I am a criminal grafitti artists with pie in the sky ideas! Love it.

I thought these two icons were super cute as me and Sister Jean for an imaginary hub story animation.

3 Responses to Cherokee ComeUnity Hub

  1. and on the other side of cherokee-the OTHER alderman sees us as not capable or worthy of alley recycling containers —really-thanks for all your efforts…maybe take a break-maybe a long bike ride

  2. Pingback: » Archive » P L A Y @ S U P E R H E R O – I N G

  3. Pingback: » Archive » STL^sHaPeS

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About me
Educated as a painter, learning as a yogi, and playful as a baby monkey: I am a willing human being __ emphasis on the Be. I am traveling-learning, designing projects to feed my inquiries while attracting adventures and connecting with tribes that grace my journey with experiential wisdom in creative healing and joyful sustainability. My passions are catalyzing radically simple + beautiful + fun intentional community, sparking spontaneous collaborative singing and dancing, acroyoga, permaculture, and loving children.