One of the more interesting things about this semester is the opportunity to collaborate with RDG Planning and Design's Des Moines Office. Wednesday afternoon we had our first joint interaction on the project. We began by walking through the past two months research, answering questions about site, climate, demographics, and ultimately what a food hub even is. Our guests were fascinated by the concept of a food hub, and the potential impact we may be able to create in establishing food security.
For the past week, my partners and I have been working charette style to establish our first big ideas. In addition to bridging the gap between producers and consumers, we also find it very necessary to educate our customers on WHY we are operating. in 2015 Nevada's Public School System ranks 49th in the United States, according to Wallethub.com. With many Las Vegas employees being in the service industry, education is not valued as much as in other parts of the country. This problem extends far beyond the classroom. Low education levels can directly correlate to poor nutrition choices. Eating cheaper, more processed foods such as frozen pizzas or a burger from the local drive thru have become more than a convenience, they have become a lifestyle. With an aging baby boomer generation, and a growing millennial population, now is a perfect time to instill healthy choices in people's daily lives.
So, what are we doing to help?
Our goal is to promote social outreach, as well as educational programming to bring an identity to our food hub. The food hub's success depends on the people using it, right? We believe that a vision for the future generation is imperative to the long term success of the food hub. Although still in the schematic stages, we have developed an open, flexible space, that can have a variety of programs. The street presence will have to be intriguing to the pedestrian, something that is not currently found on the site. Delivering an experience from start to finish, using key points such as green walls, and visually connected spaces will help tell our story. We are pushing forward for the next week or so, and continually refining our vision and goals for the project.