What were the project goals?
Our aim is for creative placemaking that is rooted in Upham’s Corner’s history and diversity. We believe that deep local resident and business engagement is critical to ensuring collective ownership, the hallmark of any sustainable, long term change.
Specifically we want to:
• Use art and design tools to engage a wide diversity of residents in imagining new possibilities for Upham's Corner, including underutilized public spaces
• Use interactive pop-up exhibits to inform and engage the community in neighborhood revitalization planning processes and in their own planning and making processes
• Ensure that arts and cultural programming in Upham’s Corner is designed and led by local artists, residents and merchants
• Evaluate and document best practices in using arts to build neighborhood engagement and vibrancy
Have they changed over time?
We continue to learn all sorts of things that help us improve our approach, but our goals are still largely the same.
Who are the project partners and stakeholders?
Upham’s Corner ArtPlace and DS4SI have a broad cross-section of partners, and this is no coincidence. We believe that long term success will be based on the partnerships that grow or deepen through this process, whether they’re partnerships between local artists and merchants, between businesses and nonprofits, or between the city and local planning efforts.
Some of the key partners are the lead partners in Upham's Corner ArtPlace: The Boston Foundation, Upham’s Corner Main Street, and Dudley Street Neighborhood Initiative. Other key community partners in our Public Kitchen event included The Food Project, The Shirley Eustis House, Haley House, and City Growers. Our commissioned artists are always key partners and collaborators. An MIT Co-design class, through the Center for Civic Media, partnered with us on our Making Planning Processes Public exhibit. And we had great partners and teachers at the city planning level for our MPPP exhibit, including members of the Boston Redevelopment Authority, Department of Neighborhood Development and Strand Theater. Our funding partners have included The Boston Foundation, ArtPlace, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Communities Creating Healthy Environments initiative and The Praxis Project.
Our primary stakeholders include the diverse population of the Upham’s Corner neighborhood, including artists, merchants, elderly, youth, immigrants, etc. If UCAP doesn’t succeed in engaging these stakeholders at a high level, the community will not have their say in the development going on around them. Deep local resident and business engagement is critical to ensuring collective ownership, the hallmark of any sustainable change. With our commitment to creating a strong community foundation, we hope to ensure that a lot of the programming, awareness, and energy extends well beyond the ArtPlace grant period and becomes a core element of sustainable, community-centered development in Upham’s Corner.