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We are reclaiming urban public space for people on PARK(ing) Day, Friday, September 16, 2011 from 9am to 5pm.  The designed “PARK(ing) spaces”, metered parking spaces converted into temporary green parks, will be located in front of Southport Grocery, 3552 North Southport Avenue.  The ‘park’ will feature a bicycle repair station, live music, and a lawn for dining and enjoying the day.

In 2009 and 2010, moss Design converted parking spaces into temporary public space, which will be expanded this year to highlight the need for bike infrastructure and open space in Lakeview.  Earlier this year moss Design unveiled a sustainable master plan, prepared for the Lakeview Chamber of Commerce and SSA 27.  Part of the plan was a call for more unique and accessible public open space.  This year’s PARK(ing) Day theme is a “Bicycle Comfort Station” featuring free food, live music, bike parking and repair, and relaxation areas.  Think of it as the mini-mart of the future.
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Moss reveals the Lakeview Area Master Plan to the Lakeview community and Chicago.  The master plan, in its entirety, is available here.

Our first LAMP public open house brought in hordes of West Lakeviewians for a fun filled day of activities, community visioning, and croissants.  Here is what you missed.

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We have an unused driveway in front of our office that only gets used occasionally to load and unload materials.  It is pretty useless.  After recent water main work under our street the City even repoured the driveway that they tore up to install a new sidewalk ramp.

As part of our reclamation of the urban right-of-way project we have installed a raised planter bed, designed and built by moss with 100% reclaimed framing lumber from the Rebuilding Exchange.  Now flourishing are tomatoes, basil, oregano, thyme, brussels sprouts, strawberries, and sage.  Construction and current photos after the break. Read the rest of this entry »

milw_porch01After completing the artist loft spaces on Milwaukee Avenue, we have been asked to reconstruct the currently dilapidated rear exit porch and stair.  However, instead of reconstructing the stair only to serve the purpose of an emergency exit and, what will certainly become, a tenant storage annex, we thought, ‘What else could it be?’.  One the the reasons many rear porches end up as overflow storage for residents is because Chicago porches are not particularly inviting places to spend time.  They are only designed for the one purpose of exiting, and stairwells tend not to conjure up thoughts of a welcoming space.  This isn’t to say that utilitarian spaces can’t be beautiful, however, in this case, they aren’t.  Read the rest of this entry »

Water Hazard is an ongoing architectural research project by moss.  We are studying water related issues to become better stewards of this most precious resource.  Below is the latest dispatch. (This report was originally published by moss in March of 2005)

golfcourse1aThe United States is home to more than 23,000 golf courses, by far the most in the world. A large number of courses are located in the west and southwest regions of the country; regions that are in severe drought [1].  In addition, most golf courses are only available to a select few that can afford green fees and access the course.  This would not pose such a problem if golf courses did not consume a surfeit of natural resources that are important to the survival of the public.  Courses consume an enormous amount of land (an 18 hole golf course of 6200 yards or more would require 110 to 180 acres of land [2]), and water for decorative features and irrigation.  California alone boasts 912 golf courses, second only to Florida which is home to over 1,100 courses [3].  Therefore, California, looking right in the face of severe drought, uses over 164,000 acres of mainly urbanized and irrigated land for golf courses; that equates to 256 square miles, or roughly the size Memphis, Tennessee. Read the rest of this entry »

The avocado green paint has been removed from the masonry, walls are starting to be framed, rough plumbing is being routed, and insulation has been blown into the ceiling.  Photos after the jump.

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dplogoWe were approved for permit last week!  Construction is slated to begin next week.  Stay up to date right here.

dplogoThe plans for the Dill Pickle Food Coop in Logan Square have been submitted to the Department of Buildings for permits.  If all goes well we expect to be under construction in July and occupied in late summer, just in time for harvest season!  See some of our concept renderings after the jump.

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sorrelOur native, mostly perennial, urban permaculture farm is entering its second growing season!  The farm started as a patch of dirt in the sideyard of are office and was transformed into an edible landscape.  The ‘bed’ was raised with strawbales from a farm in Warrenville, Illinois and filled with a soil mix from Buy-the-Yard in Evanston.  The farm is designed as a ‘keyhole’, oriented towards the south.  After a year of working out the kinks and observing the shadows (there are only about 6 hours of direct sun a day), and monitoring the companions, we are getting ready to add new plantings around last average frost on April 24th-ish.  After the jump is an aerial showing the location of the farm (in orange) and the new native plantings which will take the place of frontyard turf (in green).

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