tacticalurbanism

U-SoA Alums Tony Garcia and Irene Balza complete Tactical Urbanism

Project in Asheville, North Carolina
By UM News

Project in Asheville, North Carolina

U-SoA Alums Tony Garcia and Irene Balza complete Tactical Urbanism

By UM News
Street Plans advances innovation in urban design

U-SoA alumnus, Tony Garcia of Street Plans, recently completed Tactical Urbanism project in Asheville, North Carolina—a street mural and sidewalk extension. Tony credits his UM architecture education with its emphasis on beautiful drawing, as the foundation for his current tactical urban design work. The project manager and designer was another alumnus, Irene Balza

Founded in Miami Beach in 2009, Street Plans is an award-winning urban planning, design, and research/advocacy firm with offices in Miami and New York City. They are known for advancing innovative practices, to test and implement projects, including open streets, public market design, and public space stewardship. Tony is co-author of the book Tactical Urbanism (Island Press). 

Tony adds, “From park lets to separated bike lanes, people around the world are adopting the lean approach and common sense practicality that underpin Tactical Urbanism projects. A recent Street Plans project in Asheville, NC shows that even temporary projects are rooted in one of the core teachings of U-SoA: it all starts with a beautiful drawing. The project was initiated by a local non-profit, Asheville on Bikes, in order to test a design for a longer-term public works project. Over the course of four days, the team, led by U-SOA alumni Irene Balza (B.Arch 2017) and Anthony Garcia (M.Arch 2005), redesigned over 1/3 mile of a major city street in downtown Asheville. The project involved expanding sidewalks, adding street trees, crosswalks, 'bike boxes', and a one-block long street mural. All for a material budget of $30,000, proving that you don't have to spend a lot of money to have both beautiful and safe streets; it's all in the drawing.”