The BurgFinder Project
Transportation is the largest single source of air pollution in the United States. It causes over half of the carbon monoxide, over a third of the nitrogen oxides, and almost a quarter of the hydrocarbons in our atmosphere in 2006. With the number of vehicles on the road and the number of vehicle miles traveled escalating rapidly, we are on the fast lane to smoggy skies and dirty air. Bicycling for transportation is making up a growing share of all bicycling, increasing from 43% of all bike trips in 2001 to 54% in 2009. In large cities, bicycling growth is highly concentrated in central cities, but it is still very low in most suburbs. Western states have the highest bicycling rates, while southern states have extremely low levels of bicycling.
A few members of the Access Team met with Urban Planner Mike Lydon a few weeks ago and he discussed with us the recent and exciting phenomena of Tactical Urbanism. We shared our DFA project with him and he talked about it in his recent lecture at the City Works Expo in Roanoke. The BurgFinder is at about 18 minutes in.
More information on the BurgFinder can be found here.
Design 101: Kickoff Worshop Success!
This Sunday Industrial Design Professor Larry Fenske will give DFA’s first Design Discussion Series: Human Centered Design + Research. Come join us and learn about how design is being used in our lives every day! We will also be forming teams for the semester. DFA meets Sundays in the Burchard Hall Kiva at 7:00 PM.
Last Sunday, September 23 Design for America at Virginia Tech held it’s inaugural Design 101: Kickoff Workshop! The workshop was an afternoon looking at issues of Hunger, Illiteracy, and Community Access within Blacksburg and the New River Valley. Seven different teams of students joined with a community partner, who had unique insight into our community, to think about one of the issues. Students came from from majors in Architecture, Engineering, Environmental Resource Management, Political Science, and more.
Groups thought about personal experiences and stories related to the issue, did background research, brainstormed, and made quick mock-ups of their ideas to address the issues.
A few ideas that were generated from the workshop included:
Healthy food school classes where kids of all grades learn about different ingredients and recipes, create cookbooks with shopping/pricing lists to use with their families, then use to make tasty meals while bringing the family together for reading time.
Mobile book carts that go from business to business and allow people to pick up and drop off new books throughout town.
Traveling swap meets where people could bring food, goods, or services to trade with their fellow community members and tents where social services/community groups can bring their services directly to the people who use them.
Everyone at DFA is energized by the ideas and dialogue that has been created through our design workshop. Beginning this Sunday we will be forming teams that will tackle a local issue of interest to them. Some of the ideas generated from the workshop are already generating tons of excitement and this will be invaluable when the teams go out into our community itself and begin to talk with users who would be affected by our designs and work with them to turn these ideas from Paper with Potential to Implementation with Impact!
We would like to take this time to thank everyone who came out, especially our community partners; Plenty!, Micah’s Backpack, Bicycle Kitchen, Don Schiewer, Virginia Tech Engage, and Virginia Tech College of Architecture and Urban Studies.
Please contact us with any questions.
We look forward to seeing you this Sunday!