stefano ascari mla 2014 capstone

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2014 Masters of Landscape Architecture Capstone booket.



    Phillips West

  • 2Table of Contents

    Project Statement 5

    Phillips West


    ContextDemographicsInfrastructureSite ConditionsSound Barrier



  • 3Literature 58Design



  • 4

  • 5We ought to plan the ideal city with an eye to four considerations. The first, as being the most indispensable, is health. Aristotle, Politics (ca 350 B.C.)

    PROJECT STATEMENTToday, many communities across the United States are facing critical challenges related to health While the days when premature deaths from infectious disease are behind us. Today we face a new challenge Hundreds of thousands of Americans die each year from preventable diseases.

    During the past decade, research on health-promoting behavior has shifted from predominantly demographic and psychosocial influences toward a broader focus that also includes the role of the built environment (Sallis et all 2008).

    Americans across all demographics have been spending less time in nature over the past three decades. Two patterns stand out as indicators of propensity for participation in outdoor activities: infrastructure and peer connections.

    A report by Charles and Wheeler indicates that among youth there is still a preference for unstructured mobile activities such as biking and running over structured types (PE classes)(Wheeler et al 2009).

    The report revealed that youth with nearby walking and biking routes engaged more frequently in outdoor activities. When juxtaposed with neighborhoods that already facilitate certain means of transportation, individuals are more exposed alternative means of transportation.

    Infrastructure and that the way our cities are designed ultimately affects the quality of the physical activities we engage in.

    This capstone project explores the potential of harnessing community networks (undeclared social contracts between peers) and pedestrian favored environments as tools for shaping an urban landscape that promotes healthy living.


    1900 2010




    No De

    aths /

    100 0






    Pneumonia Heart Disease


    Noninfectiousairwaive diseases

    Cerebrovascular DiseaseAccidentsDiabetesNephropathiesPneumoniaSuicide

    Main Causes of Death 1900 vs 2010 Source: CDC

  • 7150Billion Dollars spent each year on direct and indirect costs.(source: American Heart Association)

    Physical activity still the main driver for better health.

  • 8Infrastructure increasesadoption

  • 966.1% 37% 24% 29%In a Random sample survey of 1818 adults Brownson et al. asked about where people where physically active: The most common answer were as follows: on neighborhood Streets (66.1%), at shopping malls (37%), at parks (29%), on walking and jogging trail (24.8%)

    (Brownson et al 2001)

  • 10

    Two StrategiesThe World Health Organization has determined that health is a modern social justice issue and selected healthy community design as the primary strategy for reducing health disparities. One of the main strategies employed towards this effort is to promote preventive health care through urban planning. Only recently has research on pathogenesis (source of illness) converged with research on salutogenesis (finding the cause of health and re-inforcing them) (Barton, Tsurou 2000). Despite health not obtaining a central focus in contemporary urban planning strategies, there is ample evidence and research highlighting the effects that environments have on the well-being and health of the people that frequent them.

    To begin to dissect the onion that is health, a set of interrelational models might prove helpful in explaining the complex interaction between health and total environment [biological, physical, economic].


  • 11


    Socioeconomic, Cultural, and Environmental Living and Working Conditions

    Social and C

    ommunity Inuences

    Individual Lifestyle Choices

    Figure 1Determinants of Health

    Adapted from: Whitehead & Dahlgren


    National research suggests that a persons health is strongly influenced --as much as 50% or more-- by social determinants, including income, education, and neighborhood conditions. Blue Cross Blue Shield 2010

  • 12

    Sound Barrier

    Bus Stops

    Street Scape

    Vacant Lots

    Yard Space






    This project proposes collapsing 5 neighborhood typologies into three key systems:

    Paths define the ways in which we reach our destinations.

    Nodes refer to origins and destinations.

    Links are are the joining of binary systems which intersect at nodes.

  • 13


    In the nervous system, a synapse is a structure that permits a neuron (or nerve cell) to pass an electrical or chemical signal to another cell (neural or otherwise). Santiago Ramn proposed that neurons are not continuous throughout the body, yet still communicate with each other, an idea known as the neuron doctrine.

  • 14

    Phillips West CONTEXT

  • 15

  • 16

    35 W





    Lake St

    Midtown Greenway

    Lake Calhoun

    1980 1990 2000

    Population Change


    Phillips West is part of Greater Phillips in south Minneapolis which is made up of four neighborhoods: Phillips West, Midtown Phillips, East Phillips, and Ventura Village. The area contains approximately 40 blocks situated between 22nd street and Lake street, Interstate 35W and Chicago Avenue. Lake street is a heavy commercial zone that intersects the South end of the neighborhood. Two one way corridors (Park avenue and Portland Avenue) intersect the area on N-S bound directions.

    Lake St. to the South and 22nd St SE represent the Northern boundaries of the neighborhood. The Midtown Greenway, an express bike lane that is partially below the grade of the neighborhood, crosses through the southern end.

    The area connects to Whittier through one pedestrian crossing over 35W and two connector streets (22nd and 35th).

  • 17

    Percentage of population below poverty level

    Average number of cars or othervehicles available in houses/condos:

    Average number of cars or other vehicles available in apartments:

    Phillips Minneapolis45.4% 23.8%

    2.1 0.61.6 0.9

  • 18

    Over the past three decades the population of Phillips West has become younger and more diverse. (source: City-Data)

  • 19

    85 Years and over

    65 to 84 years

    45 to 64 years

    25 to 44 years

    18 to 34 years

    5 to 17 years

    Under 5 years

    1980 1990 2000

    Phillips West Median Age

    Age Distribution over Time

    28.8Minneapolis Median Age


    Percentage of people 3 years older in K-12 schools

    Phillips Minneapolis28.3% 14.1%

    Phillips Minneapolis

    1980 1990 2000

    Percentage of people that speak English not well or not at all

    Home Ownership vs Rent

    Renter Occupied

    Owner Occupied

    16.8% 4.9%

    6100 5330 4957

  • 20

    0Acres of park space within the boundaries of Phillips West

  • 21
















    Hope Community Youth and Community Gardens

    Center for Changing Lives Community Garden

    Robert Eugene Sund Memorial

    The English Learning Center Student Farm

    Tower Apartments Courtyard Garden

    Kaleidoscope Garden

    Prairie Oaks Community GardenEbenezer Care Center Healing Garden

    Loren on Park Patio and Sideyard Garden

    Park Apartments Gazebo Garden

    Garden Collective

    Urban Ventures Community Garden

    Cristo Rey Community Garden

    Beautication Gardens

    Food Production Gardens

    12+Community Gardens

  • 22

    Phillips West is segregated from most commercial zoning where food options are available.

    However, Urban Gardening is already very active and popular in Phillips West.

  • 23

    26th St.

    Lake St.


    Chicago 109






    E.Lake St.





    Grocery StoresCommercial Space

    Vacant Lots Average Annual Daily Traffic Volume 2012

    Frequency of Bicycle Accidents

  • 24

    Site Conditions

  • 25

  • 26


  • 27

    MNDOT must remove the Soviet-EraI-35 ugly wall on our western border.Replace the I-35 Sound Barrier (sic),with an Eleanor Roosevelt inspiredGreen Shelter Belt.

    Phillips West Resident

    In addition to the lack of grocery stores and green infrastructure, Phillips West suffers from the presence of an ominous and tall sound barrier along 5th street.

  • 28

  • 29


  • 30





    27, 39, and 5 are the main bus routes serving the Phillips Neighborhood.

    Also represented is the distribution of existing bus stops.

    Painted bike lanes exist along Portland and Park Avenues (both N-S connector streets). Additionally,the Greenway (to the South of the site) has an exclusive bike trail that spans several miles.