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Entries in Pop Up Retail (5)


When One Story Makes Sense

Most sustainably great places started with one story buildings. This example comes from Portland, OR.

A quiet crisis is emerging in our building practice: one story buildings are being coded out of the system right when we need them most. While it is true that the Wendy's, Kmarts, and Walgreens of the world earn their anti-urban distinction, we should hesitate to throw the one story baby out with the suburban bathwater. One story buildings are being called upon amidst the unpredictable shift to e-commerce, the speed at which we need to take advantage of new markets, the stubborn difficulty of building and financing affordable mixed-use buildings, and, due to the capital cost, the propensity of credit-worthy chain tenants to show up in conventional new mixed-use buildings, leading to the same placelessness and capital extraction we seek to avoid in the first place.

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Really, Really Long Dinner Tables

Really, Really Long Table Dinner, Calgary
Last century's general attempt to tidy up cities unintentionally removed many of the ways that we celebrate outdoor places, the fruits of our collective labor and the joy of living in neighborhoods. Thankfully, that is all starting to change. A rediscovered demand for sharing a meal together in both known and undervalued spaces has people clamoring to pop-up dining tables in cities around the world. It is proof positive of a shift from conventional mixed-use thinking to a more experience-based model as the core driver in building vibrant places and creating real value. Farm-to-table has reached a new level.

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A Lonely Food Truck Outside Discovery World Headquarters In Downtown Silver Spring

Food Trucks Thriving In Farragut Park in DC

Food trucks are all the rage these days. Go-To tools for urban designers, aspiring restaurateurs and festival planners, they are seen as a relatively quick and easy way to activate spaces, test new businesses and market the potential of a street, block or neighborhood. Culturally they have been embraced by young professionals as a cheap, fun alternative to sit-down restaurants and bland corporate cafes. Gastronomically, they have evolved to showcase the best creations today’s aspiring chefs have to offer. 

So one would think if you were across the street from the global headquarters of Discovery Channel in the up and coming Downtown Silver Spring, you had won the jackpot! Add to this the fact that you were the only food truck in a 1-mile radius, and your odds for success should sky-rocket, right?

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A New Face for an Old Broad

A New Face for an Old Broad from American Grapefruit Media on Vimeo.


Memphis narrows in on a Broad Strategy

A New Face for an Old Broad documents overwhelming market preference for meaningful, engaging places. Broad Street, a street that has been marred by transportation engineering's finest attempts to remove traffic from the main street and bypass traffic along Sam Cooper Boulevard, is brought back to life through bottom up urban recolonization that likely wasn't even on the City's economic development radar. 

But here comes the crux.

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Targeting All Food Deserts

Mobilizing efforts to unburden food access and choice

The American foodscape is changing. No longer able to access customers and connect them to good food through centralization, upstarts and entrepreneurs are ditching the pad site and expensive permanent digs in favor food trucks and carts.

And it's not just about hot dogs and brats.

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