Blame Vitruvius. In his treatise De Architectura around 27 BCE, the three elements critical to architecture were utilitas (function), firmitas (stability), and venustas (beauty). While so easy to articulate, in practice this harmony in buildings and places was and is so hard to achieve. Fast forward to Colonial America. Many prototypes for buildings and plans for cities hearkened back to
Ample street parking has been given way to allow for expanded outdoor dining. The use of linked pop-up tents created sizeable areas in the right-of-way where larger structures would not fit.
This very substantial parklet on South Orange Ave, just over a block away from the South Orange Performing Arts Center provides a nice outdoor seating area near restaurants. The tactical use of large concrete barriers buffers it from nearby parking and traffic on either end. Also, location near a pre-existing bump-out expands the public realm further out beyond the limits
T. J .Collins designed the Marquis Building on Beverley Street with a corner turret, bay windows, and gable-roofed bays. Together these give this commercial building a commanding presence at the intersection that it rests upon. The T. J .Collins designed Switzer Building with triple arches on the 2nd floor based on larger Venetian palazzos with a diamond pattern of terra
History photos enliven an otherwise blank wall. The Bijou is one of several theaters providing for the entertainment needs of the city and region. Water feature through the downtown steps from where the Farmers Market is held each week. Some of the public art commissioned, including a descriptive plaque with price tag. Water feature in Market Square, steps from shops,
We only had a short time to visit so focused our walking and looking in the area around Van Andel Arena. This provided a surprisingly lively subject, even if it was a little top heavy with beer-related establishments. Grand Rapids Brewing Company HopCat J. Gardella’s Tavern Tavern on the Green Liked the touch of sign painting here. Grand Woods Mural
The BOB – which stands for “Big Old Building” – is a go to social and entertainment venue in downtown Grand Rapids, Michigan. They have creatively repurposed the space with dining, indoor and outdoor entertainment, and the new 20 Monroe Live space for up to 2580 people. The outdoor beer garden is more open than others we’ve seen and feels
This open-air canopy provides a covered space for markets and community events to occur. Loved to see a playful public art element near the market. The murals were simple but effective filling the wall and bringing “a little bit of happy” to those who pass by. Loved this cinder block and beam bench. What a clever idea to provide seating