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New Orleans-Themed Urban Design Competition Announces Four Finalists: Urban Land Institute To Hold Finale in April


Washington, DC (PRWEB) March 02, 2015

Four university teams, including two from Harvard University, one from the University of Maryland, and a joint team of students from the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee and the University of Wisconsin – Madison, have been selected as the finalists for the thirteenth annual Urban Land Institute (ULI) Hines Competition, an ideas competition that challenges graduate students to create proposals for the development or redevelopment of a designated site in a U.S. metropolitan area. The competition is open to graduate students who are pursuing real estate-related studies at universities in North America.

The 2015 competition challenged multidisciplinary student teams with the task of devising a comprehensive design and development program for parts of the Tulane/Gravier and Iberville neighborhoods in downtown New Orleans. This year’s competition is designed to simulate an actual urban design and development scenario, with certain details changed for the purposes of the competition. In April, a $ 50,000 prize will be awarded to the team with the winning proposal, with $ 5,000 of the total going to the school. Each of the remaining three finalist teams will receive $ 10,000. This year, 120 teams comprising 600 students from 60 universities participated in the first round of the competition.

The Tulane/Gravier and Iberville neighborhoods, which make up a historically rich area in the city’s core, contain a mix of residential, industrial and commercial zoning that includes manufacturing plants and other small industrial complexes, many defunct, others still operational. The competition scenario is based on a hypothetical situation in which community stakeholders, including residents, land owners, local businesses, and others in the area bound by the upcoming Lafitte Greenway, the eastern edge of the new medical district, and crossed by the elevated I-10 highway, have come together to create the North Claiborne Neighborhood Improvement Association (NCNIA) – a fictional entity created for the purpose of the competition. NCNIA is seeking a master plan proposal that not only transforms the area into a thriving urban neighborhood, but also highlights its locational advantages, including its proximity to the French Quarter, adjacency to the medical district, and interaction with the Lafitte Greenway.

While based on a hypothetical situation, the 2015 Hines competition reflects many real-life concerns of New Orleans. The competition addresses the city’s continued effort to develop sustainable neighborhoods that represent New Orleans’s uniqueness with the promise of economic innovation and inclusion, as well as access to cultural, employment, transportation, and housing resources. As part of these efforts, the city recently completed the Livable Claiborne Communities (LCC) study.

The finalist teams and development schemes include:


Harvard University: Inspired by the architectural and cultural heritage of the project site and its adjacency to major city destinations and amenities, “Claiborne Grove” recalls the rich landscape that once characterized North Claiborne Avenue and prioritizes redevelopment of the street most critical to the growth and transformation of the neighborhood. The proposal’s central design element is “the Grove,” a linear multi-purpose park and urban landscape sited below elevated Interstate 10.

Harvard University: The project “Tremé 2.0” lays at the southern tip of the old Tremé district, one of New Orleans’s first urbanized neighborhoods outside of the Vieux Carre Rampart. The proposed 23-acre development project anticipatesTremé continuing its great tradition of making innovative transformation to the Crescent City, as it did 200 years ago.

University of Maryland: “The Crossing” development sows the seeds of resilience across the Bienville, Iberville, and Lafitte neighborhoods. By connecting tourist and native, greenway and park, neighborhood and city, The Crossing functions not only as a marketplace of goods, but of ideas and relationships. This commingling of people and place fosters diversity, neighborhood cohesion, and economic opportunity.

University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee, and University of Wisconsin – Madison: “Quartier Vert” creates a vision of a community that operates as an intersection between communities, corridors of activity, and a variety of users. Intertwined within each of these strategies exists a neighborhood fabric that suggests the interaction between the site and its neighbors. Capitalizing on the existing locational and socioeconomic advantages of the area, Quartier Vert seeks to revive and enhance the surrounding community.

“All of the finalists make bold proposals for re-envisioning an area that is rich in potential,” said Jury Chairman J. Michael Pitchford, president and chief executive officer at CPDC in Silver Spring, Maryland. “This year’s submissions provide new approaches for how a combination of uses all work together to create an attractive destination that is financially realistic. These entries are all reflective of an up-and-coming generation that will provide fresh ideas worth exploring in the creation of sustainable urban landscapes.”

The competition jury consists of renowned experts from diverse backgrounds in real estate development. Jurors represent a strategic mix of land use experts, including developers, brokers, architects, urban designers, landscape architects, urban planners, and policy officials. In addition to Jury Chairman Pitchford, other jury members are: Tara Carter Hernandez, president, JCH Development, New Orleans, Louisiana; Dennis Dornan, senior associate and studio director, Perkins+Will, San Francisco, California; Kyrus L. Freeman, partner, Holland & Knight, Washington, D.C.; Jeff Hebert, executive director, New Orleans Redevelopment Authority, New Orleans, Louisiana; Matthew Hopkins, director of architecture and sustainability, StreetSense, Bethesda, Maryland; Michael Horst, consultant, New York, New York; Stephen G. Leeper, president and chief executive officer, 3CDC, Cincinnati, Ohio; Maureen McAvey, senior fellow and Bucksbaum Family chair for retail, ULI, Washington, D.C.; Kathryn L. Reynolds, founder and chief executive officer, Vivelan Group, New Orleans, Louisiana; Halina Steiner, creative director, dlandstudio, Brooklyn, New York; and Byron Stigge, director, Level Infrastructure, New York, New York.

In addition to the four finalists, the jury selected eight team proposals for honorable mention. The jury commended the University of Pennsylvania with “The Zipper: The Lafitte Terminal” for its realistic graphics, stimulating neighborhood vision, and overall good sense of placement; the University of Michigan with “Rooted” for its clear and cogent schematic process along with a cohesive and thoughtful environment vision; Ball State University with “Carondelet Noveau” for its creative spaces along the highway blocks, stimulating visualization of the parkway, and the general treatment under I-10; the University of Oklahoma with “Pulse: The Beat Street District” for the proposed urban layout, general sense of connectivity, and the outline density near block J; a joint team from Kent State University, Cleveland State University and Case Western Reserve University with “Delta Commons” for its distinct neighborhoods nodes and treatment of space under the highway; the University of Texas at Austin with “Claiborne Quarter” for its outstanding pro forma, good optimization of space, sense of scale, and key organizing element; the Georgia Institute of Technology with “Down the Line” for its phasing scheme, thoughtful relocation of the RV park, general space layout, and visual legibility; and the University of Oregon with “Urban Groves” for the diagrammatic visualization, a good optimization of real estate in plan, as well as the outlined cross section, and general presentation board design.

The Hines competition is part of an ongoing ULI effort to raise interest among young people in creating better communities, improving development patterns, and increasing awareness of the need for interdisciplinary solutions to development and design challenges. The competition is strategically structured to encourage cooperation and teamwork—necessary talents in the planning, design and development of sustainable communities—among future land use professionals and allied professions, such as architecture, landscape architecture, urban planning, historic preservation, engineering, real estate development, finance, psychology and law. The competition is designed as an exercise; there is no intention that the students’ plans will be implemented as part of any revitalization of the site.

In final phase of the competition, the student finalist teams will have the opportunity to expand their original schemes and respond in more detail. Next month, a member of each team will be brought to New Orleans to tour the site and revise their presentations. On April 9, finalist team members will present their schemes to the competition jury members during a public forum in New Orleans. The event will culminate with the announcement of the winning team.

For more information on the ULI Gerald D. Hines Student Urban Design Competition, visit: http://uli.org/hines.

About the Urban Land Institute

The Urban Land Institute (uli.org) is a nonprofit education and research institute supported by its members. Its mission is to provide leadership in the responsible use of land and in creating and sustaining thriving communities worldwide. Established in 1936, the Institute has more than 34,000 members representing all aspects of land use and development disciplines.







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The Urban Assault Ride Returns: Bicycle Obstacle Race Uses Beer, Bikes and Big Wheels to Teach Cyclists that Bikes are a Great Way to Get Around Town

Boulder, Colorado (PRWEB) February 26, 2015

After a two-year hiatus, the much-loved Urban Assault Ride is relaunching in 5 cities. The celebration of beer, bikes and big wheels returns in 2015 kicking off the season in Denver on June 14, before moving on to Minneapolis (July 12), Des Moines (August 16), Austin (November 1), and Tucson (November 15).

Find out more at http://www.urbanassaultride.com

The Urban Assault Ride is the only bicycle obstacle event series in the nation. Its unique format, which is part bike ride, part obstacle race, and part scavenger hunt is part of the allure of the event, which has gained a cult-like following since its inaugural event in Austin in 2003. Teams of two plan their own route to checkpoints around town, tackling obstacles at each stop along the way. Obstacles include: adult big wheels, the ‘paper boy’ challenge, ‘human slingshot’, the ‘longboard launch’ and more. The first team to hit all the checkpoints, complete the obstacles, and cross the finish line wins. The UAR is followed by a huge after party with plenty of craft beer and legendary prize contest. This year, the winning duo takes home a pair of adult size big wheels from Huffy Slider, one of the event sponsors. Other sponsors include Keen, New Belgium, Osprey, and CLIF Bar.

While the event is big on fun, it was designed with the mission to promote bikes as a means of transportation. The Urban Assault Ride aims to provide cyclists with an adventurous opportunity to learn safe cycling routes around town. The motto is “grab your bike lock, instead of your car keys for short trips around town”. Past participants are excited when they realize they gained an increased knowledge of safe and efficient bike routes around their city during their Urban Assault Ride experience.

“We are super excited to bring back an event we are so passionate about,” explains Josh Kravetz, president of Adventure Fit, the company that produces the event. Our team lives and breathes adventure, beer, and bikes and this event brings it all home. We are creating a super fun experience that is getting more people on bikes more often. That’s long-lasting result that we can be really proud of.”

Each event will be capped at 2000 riders and registration is open at http://www.urbanassaultride.com.

About Adventure Fit

At Adventure Fit, we live for fun outdoor adventures. Our passion shows in our work through every event, team, and experience we create. Founded on the slogan “Come out and Play!”, Adventure Fit has produced some of the country’s most popular participatory sporting events, including the SHAPE Diva Dash and the Oskar Blues Old Man Winter Bike Rally. Our events are not only fun and unique, they also have a deeper goal: to open the eyes of our participants to a world of greater social and environmental responsibility. We partner exclusively with companies that have sustainable business practices and give back to non-profits around the country. For more information, visit http://www.adventurefit.com







Agein Corporation Responds to Study Showing Urban Air Ages Skin 10% Faster than Rural Life


Boston, MA (PRWEB) November 13, 2014

Agein.com, the Internet’s premier anti-aging web site focusing on anti-aging tips, news, and advice from some of the foremost experts in the industry, is responding to a recent study that found living in urban areas makes the skin age 10% faster than living in a rural setting.

According to recent scientific evidence, pollution can age the appearance of women’s skin 10% faster than those who live in the countryside. A study looked at women aged 30 to 45 and compared the skin quality of those living in urban areas with those living in a rural setting. While both test groups had similar lifestyles and were exposed to comparable amounts of ultraviolet light, those in urban areas experienced greater skin damage. (Source: “Skin Ages 10 Times Faster If You Live In A City, Study Finds,” The Harley Medical Group web site, November 10, 2014; http://www.harleymedical.co.uk/news/skin-ages-10-times-faster-if-you-live-in-a-city-study-finds.)

“After analyzing the data, researchers concluded that living in the city makes the skin age 10% faster than living in the country,” says Dr. Kevin J. McLaughlin, Agein.com’s anti-aging and health and wellness specialist. “While there is no doubt that pollution damages the skin, the big questions are why and what can people do to prevent premature signs of aging?”

Studies show that the air in urban areas all over the world contains no less than 224 chemicals. The air pollution particles can penetrate the skin and damage proteins called keratins that protect the skin from moisture loss; the breakdown of this type of protein leads to the formation of wrinkles and premature aging. For those with sensitive skin, air pollution can lead to further issues, including uneven skin tone, redness, and inflammation, says Dr. McLaughlin. With 80.7% of the U.S. population living in urban areas, this groundbreaking research could have a significant impact on the way Americans look after their skin. (Source: “2010 Census Urban and Rural Classification and Urban Area Criteria,” United States Census Bureau web site; http://www.census.gov/geo/reference/ua/urban-rural-2010.html, last accessed November 12, 2014.)

“Whether someone lives in the city or the country, to keep skin moisturized, healthy, and youthful-looking, it’s important to have a daily skin care regimen,” Dr. McLaughlin adds. “Use an anti-wrinkle moisturizing cream scientifically proven to improve skin tone and the appearance of deep wrinkles, as well as one that reduces fine lines around the eyes.”

Gentle ingredients such as acetyl hexapeptide-3 (Argireline) and Matrixyl 3000 have been shown to protect skin against the elements and improve the appearance of lines, wrinkles, and sagging skin, says Dr. McLaughlin. Matrixyl 3000 is a cutting-edge protein fragment that specifically targets thin, delicate skin and fine lines around the eyes and mouth and has been shown to stimulate the production of collagen from within the skin and improve skin tone. (Source: “Matrikines and Rejuvenation,” RBC Life Sciences web site, December 2003; http://www.rbclife.info/pdfs/c7/matrixyl3000.pdf.)

Argireline is a protein that targets expression wrinkles. In one independent study, published by the International Journal of Cosmetic Science, Argireline reduced the look of wrinkles by 32 percent after just 28 days, says Dr. McLaughlin. (Source: Blanes-Mira, C., et al., “A synthetic hexapeptide (Argireline) with antiwrinkle activity,” International Journal of Cosmetic Science, 2002.24, 303 310; http://www.biologicsolutions.com/content/179632/clinicalstudy.pdf.)

About Agein.com: The company’s goal is to inspire and coach readers to adapt an anti-aging lifestyle that suits their individual needs. Its anti-aging experts offer education on diet, fitness, and skin care and how all of these areas affect the way people look and feel. Agein.com also provides information on all of the latest advances in anti-aging research, the hottest anti-aging trends in Hollywood, and beauty tips. Agein.com will equip readers with all of the tools needed to make the right anti-aging lifestyle choices. To learn more about Agein Corporation, visit the company’s web site at http://www.Agein.com.







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