HKS Design Fellowship VII (HKSdf) is right around the corner so we thought we’d recap HKSdf VI and highlight the work of all the talented design fellows. To get to know a bit more about them check out their application entries on Facebook here. (If you’re not already familiar with the HKSdf, see what it’s all about here.) Now, on to the design problem. Here’s what the design fellows received just prior to their arrival:
“Since its inception as the grounds for the Dallas State Fair in 1886, through its growth for the celebrated 1936 Texas Centennial Exposition and current multidimensional events, Fair Park has served its community magnificently. Current economic conditions and publicized departure of important stakeholders has created the need for a new vision for Fair Park. To help preserve, progress and enhance its value, the 2011 HKS Design Fellowship has chosen to re-imagine new possibilities for an activity-filled, socially sensible and economically self-sustaining Fair Park. This captivating dialogue between history and progress – as well as community and economy – will take center stage at the 2011 HKS Design Fellowship.”
Here’s the short of it; Fair Park is more than just a venue for the State Fair of Texas (though we’re all partial to those corny dogs – except maybe the vegetarians…sorry). The grounds suffer heavily from public perception – surrounded by low income neighborhoods and old car lots, it’s just not seen as a place to go when there’s not an event going on. However, Fair Park is a public park and even has a designation as a National Historic Landmark because of its significance and collection of art deco architecture. Similar civic spaces and parks across the country see much more activity on a daily basis and don’t even have the same assets. So what’s there to do about it? What solutions can an architectural intervention initiate? Well that was for the design fellows to decide. I’ll leave you with this quote by Jane Jacobs, “Old ideas can sometimes use new buildings. New ideas must use old buildings.”
Check back over the next couple of weeks where we will highlight the brilliant solutions that were developed by the three teams, check out the photo collage for a “sneak preview”. Get excited, no two are alike, at all, but all are worthy of plenty of discussion and thought (just ask the jurors. Here’s what one had to say “The creativity expressed in the presentations evoked a sense and questioning of not what is, but rather what could be in creating a destination and sense of place.” – Daniel Huerta, Executive General Manager, City of Dallas Parks and Recreation Department). One last thing, don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @HKSdf for updates on HKS Design Fellowship VII and plenty of other design related tweets/commentary/random thoughts.