East Carolina University's mission includes serving as a national model for public service and regional transformation by (among others):"creating a strong, sustainable future for eastern North Carolina through education, research, innovation, investment, and outreach…" The planning program continues to contribute to that mission with outreach efforts in the region involving faculty and students.
Harriot College faculty, ECU students, and the Greenville community came together for an event on Sept. 19. The initiative, called Art + Community, brings ECU and the surrounding neighborhood together through the creation and installation of art. An estimated 500 people turned out at 3rd and Jarvis streets in downtown Greenville for a block party that included painting the wall, live music and fellowship. The Art+Community research team formed three years ago leaded by Dr. Misun Hur (Department of Geography, Planning, and Environment) and Dr. Kate LaMere (School of Art and Design). Gilbert Combs, a senior Planning student, has been selected as one of five Public Service Fellows for this initiative and will receive a scholarship at the end of Fall 2015 semester.
For more information visit http://www.ecu.edu/cs-admin/news/artandcomm.cfm or http://www.reflector.com/news/using-art-bring-people-together-2986843
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During fall 2014, students of land use planning class provided plans for the Town of Beaufort. The student projects included the following:
1. Land use plan for the new U.S. Hwy 70 Corridor (Under Construction); Download Report
2. Transportation and land use recommendations for the Cedar Street Corridor; Download Report
3. Small area plan for the Lennoxberry neighborhood; Download Report
4. Waterfront Park Redesign. Download Report
Jerry Weitz and certain students of Planning Studio class (Fall 2013) completed a comprehensive plan for the Town of Snow Hill in Greene County, North Carolina. The Town of Snow Hill received a $5,000 Community Transformation Grant and hired the planning program to complete the work. The comprehensive plan was adopted by the Snow Hill Board of Commissioners on March 10, 2014.
Click here to download a copy of the Snow Hill Comprehensive Plan.
Planning students and faculty visited various City of Greenville housing and community development project sites guided by Mr. Merrill Flood, the director of the City of Greenville's Department of Community Development. The image below was taken at Five Point Plaza, Uptown Greenville, after the field visit to the project sites.
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Dr. Misun Hur and Dr. Traci Birch are involved in a project with the Greenville Police Department focused on bringing art to a small section of the neighborhood just on the other side of 5th Street from Jenkins. This area has a high crime rate that the Police Department is targeting for a special crime reduction initiative. Part of this initiative involves a strategy called Crime Prevention through Environmental Design (CPTED). We are working with a faculty member from the School of Arts (Dr. Kate LaMere) to help the Greenville Police Department build a connection with the community. Although invisible, this project will bring positive changes to the residents, businesses in Uptown, and the city as a whole. Five planning students (Eric Vitale, Eliza Monroe, Kelsey Morrow, Nathan Williams, and Frederick Wyrsch) volunteered for the project, trained and were ready for the first community meeting scheduled on Thursday, February 27 at 6pm at Sheppard Memorial Library. The first stage focuses on painting sidewalks and other surfaces; however, the project will be multi-phased and the possibilities are endless. To monitor the progress of the project, find us at Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/ArtAndCommunity.
The Spring 2014 course project in Emergency Management Planning asks students to work on an impact assessment study of the Pitt County buyout program that was implemented after the 1999 Hurricane Floyd. The aim of the project is to understand the socio-economic, environmental, and development outcomes of the buyout program in the impacted area, 15 years after Hurricane Floyd. The course project is being undertaken in collaboration with the Pitt County Department of Planning and Development. The image below was taken after a field visit to the project sites in the floodplain and shows the students involved in the project along with Pitt County officials from Planning and Development: James Rhodes (Director), Eli Johnson (Senior Planner) and Bryan Jones (Environmental Planner).
In September 2013, the program completed a "Guidebook on Local Planning for Healthy Communities" for the North Carolina Department of Commerce, Division of Community Assistance. The effort was funded by a $20,000 community transformation grant project from Albemarle Regional Health Services (District 9 of the Association of Local Health District Directors). The guidebook describes how to integrate healthy community planning principles and actions into comprehensive and other types of local/community plans.
Download the Guidebook
The Old Waynesboro Commission, Inc. in Goldsboro, which operates Old Waynesborough Park, contacted the program for assistance. Jerry Weitz and some of his design and historic preservation students are preparing a master plan graphic for the park, an assessment of historic village expansion, and other park project proposals.
Download Old Waynesborough Report
With funding from ECU's Office of Engagement, Innovation and Economic Development, certain students in Dr. Weitz's land use planning class (fall 2011) completed a small area plan for the South Mills core village. The plan was presented to the Camden County Board of Commissioners in February 2012.
Download South Mills Village Core Plan
Dr. Weitz's planning studio class in 2011 prepared a smart growth audit of the city's Horizons comprehensive plan and land development regulations.
Download Audit Document
In 2010, The Town of Hookerton requested outreach assistance from the program. Various outreach efforts were completed in 2011, including a redrafting of the town’s zoning map, a program for GIS development, land use and zoning recommendations, analysis of heritage tourism potential, and park and recreation planning.
Download Zoning Map (Unofficial)
Download GIS Recommendations Report
With funding from the state via ECU’s Office of Engagement, Innovation and Economic Development, the planning program was hired to prepare a housing needs assessment and a feasibility study for initiating an industrial speculative building program.
Download Housing Needs Assessment
Download Shell Building Feasibility Study
During Fall Semester 2010, Dr. Weitz’s planning studio class assisted the Mid-East Commission with background research in support of updating its comprehensive economic development strategy.