9. Record Neighborhood Stories

The Genealogy of Place Living in an old city neighborhood was a deliberate and often rewarding choice.  Yes, it comes with the challenges of fixing up a 1920’s Four-Square, but cultivating a community has been an unexpected benefit.  Our particular block in Marquette Park features a myriad of ages, races, and backgrounds which contribute to…

8. Make Parking Areas More Productive

The feature image diagram to the left shows a cursory investigation on the amount of available parking in South Bend’s central business district; otherwise known as the urban corridor.  If you’re looking for an intensive study on the downtown parking available in South Bend, check out the report completed in February 2016, by Rich and…

7. Improve the Urban Food Forest

Food deserts are a very real problem for the United States. The USDA defines this as “Food deserts are defined  as parts of the country vapid of fresh fruit, vegetables, and other healthful whole foods, usually found in impoverished areas. This is largely due to a lack of grocery stores, farmers’ markets, and healthy food…

6. Better Seating Throughout the City

A few years ago, at the Minneapolis ASLA Annual Meeting, I heard a speaker talk about two chairs that were stolen from his front porch.  They were Adirondack chairs that he made, so he was disappointed when they came up missing.  His first response was to find a way to get the chairs back, but…

5. Divert Stormwater From Driveways to Tree Lawns

During a rain event, South Bend collects water from many impervious surfaces: hundreds of miles of roadways, acres and acres of parking lots, not to mention buildings and structures.  This water, all 70mil gallons of it, is collected into a network of combined sewers (both sanitary and storm sewers) and treated at the Wastewater Treatment…

4. Improve Social Mobility

It’s hard to feel like infrastructure ideas are important when we’re still confronting poverty, violence, hunger, and blight – both here and around the world.  Interestingly, infrastructure does collide with these issues when we look at the impact of sprawl. So what are the implications of sprawl?  It turns out, lack of connection to opportunity…

3.Start a Human Library

  The Human Library creates an opportunity to break down prejudices and encourage understanding through interaction and humor.  Through this very basic and positive approach, visitors to a Human Library can speak informally with “people on loan”.  In order to develop understanding and dissolve barriers, it is necessary to have a diverse “people on loan” group….

2.Use Artifacts from Drewry’s Site for Park

Muessel Grove Park is much like any other South Bend park: active recreation components like playgrounds and ball courts, canopy trees, and lots of lawn.  Adjacent to that park, is the former Drewry’s Brewery property that is rapidly being torn down after years of decline. One way to set apart Muessel Grove Park from the rest…

1. Support Existing Capacity

Problem solving public sector issues involves a number of variables, both known and unknown, that complicate efficacy of the implementation and perception of the outcome. Often, the formula presented to the community, either by policymakers or consultants or anyone involved in the administration, highlights a problem with a proposed solution. Debates ensue, especially if the…

Best Week Ever

In the 100 days between February 20 and May 29, the 100 Ideas Project will share an idea per day that celebrates and supports the community – all building toward the Best Week Ever, a community event filled with a vibrant mix of extraordinary things taking place all over the City of South Bend.  Stay tuned as this process…