Urban River Visions
Dodson & Flinker partnered with Goody Clancy to plan, publicize and facilitate a series of public charrettes for river corridors in six communities, in the second phase of Massachusetts’ award-winning Urban River Visions program. The goal of the project was to create consensus visions and action plans for revitalizing downtown waterfronts and restoring the urban rivers that run through each community. Capitalizing on our Western Massachusetts experience, Dodson & Flinker took the lead in planning, publicizing and running the charrettes in Pittsfield and Grafton, and served as facilitators and designers for the workshops in Greenfield and Shelburne Falls. For all of the towns, Dodson & Flinker created base maps, provided GIS-based analysis, and helped develop the final maps illustrating the community’s vision for the future.
Each town’s workshop included a presentation of the river’s history, current issues and general opportunities. After the overview, the community stakeholders were divided into groups to discuss short and long-term goals for the area, and sketch ideas for the future of the river on plans. Afterward, facilitated discussion helped to translate the brainstorming ideas into a set of shared goals and realistic action strategies. The consulting team took the sketch plans and notes from the charrettes and translated them into an illustrative masterplan for each river corridor, supported by a detailed written action plan. Instead of a traditional report format, all of the information from the workshops, together with the vision plans for each community, were compiled into posters for wide distribution. The posters continue to be actively used as Urban River Visions communities move forward with their action strategies to restore their river and revitalize their community.