City of Burlington, Vermont, Burlington, VT
Preserving the funk: a plan for change and continuity in Burlington, VT’s hippest neighborhood
Burlington’s South End neighborhood is a remarkable lake-front place that combines art, industry, research & development, artisan food production, 6,400 residents, and a thriving maker community. After a decade of rapid change, the South End needed a plan for guiding growth – and for preserving what makes this eclectic neighborhood tick. Goody Clancy worked closely with city staff and Burlington City Arts to create planBTV South End, which incorporated an outreach effort as creative as the South End, an easy-to-read magazine-like report document, and a nuts-and-bolts strategy and vision for strengthening the South End as a thriving regional economic hub, as a sustainable “makerhood” of artists and makers, and as a greener, more connected place to live, work, create and play.
Elements of the draft planBTV South End report (now in the midst of a community review process) include:
- Transformation of a Superfund site into a destination park that celebrates the site’s history and ecology - and that will reconnect the neighborhood’s main street to the Lake.
- Identification of underutilized sites that are well positioned for redevelopment to accommodate businesses big and small, serving both the high-tech and “maker” sectors of the local economy.
- A more walkable, bikeable, and safely crossable South End that still ably accommodates vehicular and truck traffic.
- Creation + preservation of affordable space for artists and makers, through regulatory change and a robust toolkit of strategies.
- A lively and innovative outreach effort, through which community members explored the South End’s exciting mix of creative enterprises, the rich history and ecology of their neighborhood, and were enlisted by local artists in a range of creative dialogues about the future of this creative neighborhood.