Retrofitting Suburbia: a popular J-Term for MUPs

A popular J-term for MUPs, “Retrofitting Suburbia,” dealt with the possibilities of revitalizing abandoned or underutilized suburban properties. The two-day class explored various policy and design strategies to facilitate and create incentives for redevelopment. The 14 students were led by current Loeb Fellows Lynn Richards and Deanna VanBuren. Taking a break as policymaker for the EPA, Richards currently explores the nexus between policy and community design. VanBuren heads an architectural design practice and currently explores the impacts of art and design in the public realm.
Natalia Gaerlan (MUP ‘14), one of the participants and herself instructor of the J-term “Designing Playgrounds,” said, “The course had a nice mix of lecture and practice. It was amazing what we were able to produce in such a short amount of time.
“Lynn and Deanna have an infectious enthusiasm for their work,” Mica Wilson (MUP ‘13) adds. “Deanna and Lynn were excellent critics who were enthusiastic about sharing their ideas about suburban retrofits, and equally enthusiastic about receiving ours.”