Author Archive | Adam Ferrari

9 (More) Ideas to Help Implement Rochester’s Vision of DMC

I would not have guessed that last year’s “9 Ideas” blog post would garner such attention.  The quickly assembled list was a no more than a combination of thoughts and ideas shared between friends and colleagues as well as examples derived from authors and practitioners from across the United States.  Yet the ideas spurred conversation.  […]

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A Missed Opportunity for Placemaking

If you have ever referenced the Pannekoeken Building, the Days Inn, the Carlton Hotel, or that old building across from Rochester Methodist Hospital, well then you are already well acquainted with one of the only remaining historic hotels in downtown Rochester. And if you read the news every day, you are now aware that a […]

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Made for Walking

In small and mid-sized towns across the United States the daily decisions on design are literally making our health worse.  We need to go back to a system where we designed cities for humans.  Below is a link to my PechaKucha presentation from the Mayo Clinic Transform 2015 Symposium.  

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The Beast with No Backs

Rochester is dealing with what can only be described as a development craze. Speculation, market demand, and long term planning have formed a conflagration growing larger by the day. It is hard to remember back just a couple of years in the heart of the recession when nothing much of anything was being proposed. Today […]

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Arial view of downtown Rochester, MN

The Consolidation Problem

It came as no shock to me to read the Stantec report recommending major changes to the Rochester Planning Department. Rochester doesn’t have a planning department. When it comes to planning for Rochester, we have zoomed out and presently view the growth issues of our city through a countywide lens. Lost is the fine-grained detail […]

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The 5 Stages of Grief (That There Isn’t More Parking)

“Nobody goes there anymore.  It’s too crowded.” –Yogi Berra If you have lived in Rochester long enough, you may remember downtown buildings as the businesses that used to occupy them (e.g. Dayton’s, Wong’s, Henry Wellington’s).  And you may remember a time when it was very convenient to drive downtown and park right in front of […]

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Chia Cities

We are living in a fascinating time for urban design. Over the past 20 years, at various levels of acceptance, the United States has realized the error in its ways of the past 50-60 years. A half-century of anti-dense and anti-diverse urban planning has rendered our culture vulnerable to collapse. It is as though America […]

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Active Streetscapes and the Role of Mayo Clinic

One of the most paradoxical aspects of the downtown Rochester ecosystem, is the relationship between Destination Medical Center (DMC) and Mayo Clinic.  It is quite the dichotomy.  On the one hand, Mayo Clinic is DMC.  They were the ones responsible for its inception; the ones who felt compelled to act and create DMC.  The ones who ultimately […]

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Rochester: Ma Riviere

Fictional French film maker Jean-Francois Malibu supplied us with this short film based on his own reflections having been born and raised in Rochester.  Many thanks to him, or as they say in French, “merci beaucoup.”  

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9 Ideas to Help Implement Rochester’s Destination Medical Center Visions

Rochester is lousy with plans.  We have vision documents and planning studies all around us.  Yet we are mired in the weeds trying to figure out how we can possibly implement much of what is depicted in these prognosticating documents.   9 | ACCEPT THAT ROCHESTER IS NOT SOMEPLACE ELSE Rochester suffers, in some respects, […]

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