The Urban Design Studio is partnering with UofL Department of Art and Design to develop messaging and identity for the Health Corridor Project for the Fall 2023 and Spring 2024 semesters. This Fall, students in the Designing for Public Issues course, led by Jannell Canerday, spent the semester utilized design thinking strategies to developing the background information needed to understand the Health Corridor, including a series of stakeholder interviews, observational assessments, background research, and workshops.

The students' assessments of the needs of the corridor through observational research brought a much needed fresh perspective. It is easy to develop blindspots when you have spent years walking along the corridor. Issues around missing features for people with visual impairments was just one example. You cannot have a Health Corridor unless it is working for everyone.

The series of interviews that were conducted with people who live, work or spend time along this stretch Muhammad Ali Blvd or adjacent areas of downtown brought to light the varying perspectives the individuals had, including that there needs to be more amenities and places for the community to come together, and the corridor felt chaotic and disorganized.

One of the major take-aways form the workshop was the feeling that Muhammad Ali Blvd primarily focuses on the movement of vehicles through the city and does an extremely poor job of prioritizing the pedestrian environment. This impacts real and perceived notions of safety and contributes to stress. The lack of a quality pedestrian and cycling environment along the corridor makes it difficult to convince people to get out of their cars and opt for active transportation options when traveling between downtown and the medical district.

Find out more about their work through their final presentation PDF.

The students' work during the fall semester will inform the spring semester cohort that will be developing messaging and an identity for the Health Corridor to build momentum around transforming the street into a place with a distinct identity and focus on creating a place that improves our city and offers a better, healthier environment for the people who live, work or visit downtown.

Some photos from the workshop...