University of Notre Dame, Healthcare Foundation of LaPorte and City of LaPorte conduct design workshops 

Author: Carrie Rulli

This week, the Notre Dame School of Architecture, in partnership with the Healthcare Foundation of LaPorte and the City of LaPorte, is conducting a charrette — an intensive planning session where architects, citizens and others collaborate to develop a design or vision for a project — focusing on housing and regeneration in the downtown area of LaPorte, specifically the neighborhoods surrounding Lincolnway Avenue.

LaPorte residents and local stakeholders attended an opening presentation on Monday (May 22). Community stakeholders are also invited to attend a presentation of preliminary proposals tonight (May 23) from 5:30 - 7 p.m. and a final public presentation on Thursday (May 25) from 5:30 - 7 p.m., both at St. Peter’s Catholic Church School, 1101 Michigan Avenue, LaPorte, Indiana, where they can learn more and provide feedback.

The charrette builds on information gathered from a series of meetings and listening sessions. Hosted by the School of Architecture, the informal meetings allow participants’ voices to be heard about the housing needs, concerns and issues in the downtown area directly from those community members who live and work there. Next, the team will focus on creating a vibrant public realm while addressing critical housing needs.

We will formulate a vision and implementation strategy to encourage economic development downtown as well as to provide a catalyst for building critically needed housing,” said Marianne Cusato, director of the School of Architecture’s Housing and Community Regeneration Initiative. “The goal of this work is to regenerate the downtown without displacement of the existing residents, while also attracting new members of the community to LaPorte.”

The Housing and Community Regeneration Initiative, a program within the School of Architecture, provides assistance to municipalities and nonprofit organizations to improve economic development by reimagining the built environment.

The work of the initiative targets immediate local impact as well as national and global influence through three interrelated activities: actionable projects, research and education. Faculty, students and collaborating professional teams carry out these activities under the leadership of the school’s dean, Stefanos Polyzoides, and Cusato.

For more information, contact Carrie Rulli, communications program director, at (231) 499-9492 or