ESLARP East St. Louis Action Research Project
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


ARCH 372/374 Summer 1995
overall proposal


In hopes of securing the overall stability of the East St. Louis community, in compliance with the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, we have proposed a criteria of development to reach this goal.

Three basic phases are needed to optimize growth: stabilization, sustainability, & expansion.

In order to successfully complete each of these stages, a stable ground must be selected to be the central focus, and will act as the core of improvements. From this we can show how improvements sustain a designated area, then expand from it, as opposed to scattered development that may go unnoticed. Washington Place has been chosen to be the central focus of attention as we begin this proposal. This street has been chosen because of its basic stability, aesthetic nature, level of safety, organization, and quality of housing structure, in comparison to other streets. In addition, its proximity to State Street, which has been the focus of East St. Louis Action Research Projects (Eslarp) with the intention of stabilizing the main commercial corridor of the neighborhood, has also effected this decision.

Phase I of our proposal is to stabilize Washington Place by emphasizing its cultural and historical characteristics through improvement of the aesthetic quality of the streetscape in order to bring interest and pride to the community. In addition to exciting the residents, we hope to encourage participation in neighborhood activities. For any of the phases to work it is a great asset to have involvement of the neighborhood people, which this phase addresses.

Phase II of our proposal is to sustain Washington Place by introducing housing into vacant and deteriorating lots. To maintain the integrity of the streetscape, the infill housing needs to mirror the scale and proportions of the existing structures. Relocation to this street and renovation of existing abandoned houses throughout East St. Louis can be used to keep this scale, as well as using materials already available in this area, forming better sustainability.

Phase III of our proposal is to expand the ideas used on Washington Place to the adjacent blocks. Where appropriate, the use of renovated existing structures is preferred. New structures have also been designed as infill to address similar issues of size, use, and maintainability. New housing of single and double family residence, that comply within the context of the existing houses, are being proposed.


ARCH 372/374 Summer 1995

East St. Louis Action Research Project
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