Project Cities launches new partnership with City of Peoria

Placemaking in Peoria event Fall 2019The new semester means new projects and partnerships for Arizona State University’s Project Cities. This August marks the inauguration of our newest partner, the City of Peoria. For their first year, we’ve matched five unique projects with a great multidisciplinary team of ASU students and faculty. Project Cities recently held a kickoff event with Peoria, as well as a site visit with another partner community, Glendale, to launch these new initiatives.
  1. Majia Nadesan will be instructing students in COM 414/CMN 598: Crisis Communication to develop a Water Conservation & Drought Contingency Plan to develop public messaging around the importance of water conservation, as well as to build a response plan, should shortages necessitate cutbacks.
  2. Students in JUS 305: Principles of Justice Studies taught by Gregory Broberg will conduct a Communitywide Placemaking Study, examining residents’ desires to build a sense of shared community identity. Students will utilize the Project for Public Spaces framework to identify residents’ access to elements of sociability, community activities, comfort and linkages in Peoria. This semester’s students will conclude the semester with a series of proposals on new placemaking elements, which may be activated by other PC students in a future semester.
  3. Meanwhile, a group of students from ASU’s Next Generation Service Corps will conduct an examination of Transit Circulator Best Practices under the instruction of Laura Tan and Bailey Borman in CPP 201: Community Impact Lab.
  4. As we enter 2020, cities are becoming smarter; incorporating new technology into the community brings added planning challenges and questions of privacy, costs, and value to the community. Two classes will work on the Smart City Technology Feasibility Study: SOS 498: Urban Sustainability Best Practices with Nalini Chhetri, and an innovative multi-disciplinary course taught by Mike Wiles and Pat Phelan: the Interdisciplinary Applied Learning Lab (BUS 593/SEC 598/FSE 598/SOS 594).
  5. The fifth project, which promises to be a multi-semester, multi-course project, is a planning/development challenge for Peoria’s Skunk Creek corridor. In the long-term, the city would like to turn this unused space into a pedestrian-friendly multi-use recreation corridor. The Skunk Creek Recreation Corridor Plan will be kicked off this semester with an initial site assessment by students in FSE 104: EPICS Gold under the instruction of Joshua Loughman.
This partnership provides unique opportunities for ASU students and faculty in the Project Cities program to engage with the community to support their development initiatives for a more sustainable future. The Project Cities staff will provide support by arranging project logistics; facilitating coordination between city staff, course instructors, and students; and editing a series of final summary reports. These projects will conclude with a fall 2019 end-of-semester showcase event on December 4th to highlight the work done by the students in these project teams. Project Cities is a member of the Educational Partnerships for Innovation in Communities Network and is administered by ASU’s Julie Ann Wrigley Global Institute of Sustainability and the Sustainable Cities Network. Stay up to date with Project Cities and the Sustainable Cities Network by following us on social media or subscribing to our newsletter.