In 2014, Andrew Howard, Co-founder of the Better Block project, became a Loeb Fellow at Harvard. This opportunity has allowed him to study the projects that have developed around the world and led to real change on the ground and stronger ties between communities. Andrew originally came from the traditional urban planning world, but tired of its strict rules and lack of regard for on-the-ground realities that derail most planning initiatives. See more about Andrew and his path in the above video.
Mount Ranier, Maryland, is developing a Better Block project set to launch in April of 2011. The Washington Post interviewed organizers of the event to learn more details:
Mount Rainier officials and business owners envision transforming a city block littered with vacant storefronts into one with art galleries or cafes with outdoor seating, plants lining the sidewalks and musicians performing — at least for a day.
“Imagine what could be,” Jan Townshend, program manager for the Riverdale Park-based nonprofit Neighborhood Design Center, said at the Sept. 8 meeting of the Mount Rainier City Council. It would “show how you could create some really nice outdoor seating areas and performance spaces, and you could really get a lively street environment going.”
Full article here.