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K-State Today

March 28, 2022

APDesign Ekdahl Lecture Series presents Alexa Bush, ‘Co-creating the City’

Submitted by Thom Jackson

Alexa Bush

Alexa Bush, program officer for the Kresge Foundation, will present "Co-creating the City” as part of the spring 2022 College of Architecture, Planning & Design's Ekdahl Lecture Series  at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 30, in the Regnier Forum at Regnier Hall on the Manhattan campus. The event is free and open to the public.

City building at its best is a collective enterprise, combining the experience and aspirations of residents with the professional knowledge of planners, designers and civil servants. For too long, the development of our cities has been a top-down process, often exacerbating racial and economic inequities, and ignoring the needs of the communities it impacts. On the other hand, many processes to enable community input can be derailed by NIMBYism and the loudest voices in the room at the expense of the common good. This lecture explores a number of projects in Detroit that seek a middle ground between grassroots and top-down approaches to create more equitable and beautiful outcomes in the city's post-bankruptcy development, focusing on the role of public space in strengthening and revitalizing the city.

At The Kresge Foundation’s Detroit Program Bush supports investments in transformative public spaces in the city of Detroit that promote greater understanding and inclusion, as well as strategies that advance the interconnections between sustainable urban development and economic equity.

Before joining the Kresge Foundation in 2021, she served as urban design director-east region at the city of Detroit Planning and Development Department, where she was involved with planning and developing inclusive economic recovery efforts in partnership with residents. She implemented work through the Strategic Neighborhood Fund and led Detroit’s Reimagining the Civic Commons initiative in the Fitzgerald neighborhood in northwest Detroit.

Alexa has also held positions with SmithGroup and San Francisco Planning and Urban Research Association.

Bush earned a bachelor’s degree in visual and environmental studies from Harvard University and a master’s degree in landscape architecture from the University of Virginia.

View a full listing of the 2021-2022 Ekdahl Lectures and view the live or recorded lectures.

The Oscar S. Ekdahl Distinguished Lecture Series in Architecture, Planning & Design brings the finest professionals in the design and planning disciplines to APDesign and the K-State community. These individuals are selected to avail faculty, staff, students, and regional professionals of the potency of design and planning in addressing the issues we face as a global society. The series honors Oscar Ekdahl who received his Bachelor of Architecture from Kansas State University in 1933 and was a founding partner in Ekdahl, Davis, Depew, Persson Architects PA in Topeka.

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