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 Downtown Master Plan Charrette
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Week-long planning session took place Jan. 12-16 at McConico Building

The City of Round Rock held a charrette for the Downtown Master Plan the week of Jan. 12, 2009, in the Community Room at the McConico Building, 301 W. Bagdad Ave. 

A charrette is an intensive brainstorming session involving any number of people and lasting anywhere from a few hours to a few days; all are involved in defining problems and coming up with solutions for them.

More than 160 people participated in our week-long charrette, which included three public presentations followed by question and answer sessions on the plan as a whole, and one special focus session on a single issue downtown. 

Final presentation (PDF) from Jan. 16, and summary of Q&A
Midpoint presentation (PDF) from Jan. 14, and summary of Q&A
Opening presentation (PDF) from Jan. 12, and summary of Q&A

Summary of special focus session of Jan. 13

In the architectural profession, it has been a tradition ever since the Ecole des Beaux Arts sent a cart (charrette) around Paris to collect its students' work when the submission deadline was reached, to call crash efforts at designing as being "en charrette." (The hard-pressed students, rather than surrender their designs, used to jump on the cart along with their drawings so that they might work on them a few minutes longer "on the cart," i.e., "en charrette.")

Charrette schedule

Here's the schedule and work plan for the week of Jan. 12-16.

MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFriday
8:00 AMStudio set-upArrive at studioArrive at studioArrive at studioArrive at studio
Team MeetingWork Session and Individual meetings (Session #2)Work Session and Individual meetings (Session #3)Work Session and Individual meetings (Session #4)Work Session and Individual meetings (Session #5)
9:00 AMKick-Off Presentation 9-10 AM
10:00 AMWork Session and Individual meetings (Session #1)
11:00 AM
12:00 PM
1:00 PM
2:00 PM
3:00 PM
4:00 PM
5:00 PM
Prep for PresentationPrep for PresentationPrep for Presentation
6:00 PMKick- Off Presentation, Open House, Q+A 6-8 PM at Baca CenterSpecial Focus Session on Main Street ballfield issue, at Baca CenterInterim Presentation, Open House, Q+A 6-8 PMFinal Presentation, Open House, Q+A 6-8 PM, at Baca Center
7:00 PM
Pin Up / Team De-brief Meeting 7:30-8 PM

Studio Set Up:
The Design team arrives at the studio and sets it up with design space, presentation space, and pin up space

Team Meeting:
The Design Team and any participating City Staff meet to discuss the week, talk about goals, obstacles, schedules, techniques, etc.

Kick-Off Presentation:
The kick off presentation given the morning and evening of the first day (the same presentation) will be given by design team who will present the information gathered to date about Round Rock, the precedent studies and research accumulated that might inform the project, initial goals, concepts, and other brainstorms for the week.  A question and answer session and a public discussion will follow the presentation. NOTE: The morning presentation will be at the McConico Building, while the evening presentation will be next door at the Baca Center.

Interim Presentation / Open House:
The Wednesday night presentation will be given by the design team and will present the initial concepts, sketches, ideas, questions, and designs for the study area. A question and answer session and a public discussion will follow the presentation.

Final Presentation and Open House:
The Friday night final presentation will be given by the design team and will present the final concepts, sketches, ideas, questions, and designs for the study area accumulated over the week charrette. A question and answer session and a public discussion will follow the presentation.

Work Session and Individual meetings, Session #1:
The design team works on initial goals and preliminary sketches to identify the potentials and strengths of the study area. Members of the community are welcome to talk with the team, give ideas, and check out the drawings. There's no need to schedule an individual meeting to talk with the team, unless you want to discuss something like a real estate sale or development project that requires confidentiality.

Work Session and Individual meetings, Session #2:
The design team develops the initial concept sketches into a set of design options. Members of the community are welcome to talk with the team, give ideas, and check out the drawings. There's no need to schedule an individual meeting to talk with the team, unless you want to discuss something like a real estate sale or development project that requires confidentiality.

Work Session and Individual meetings, Session #3:
The design team continues to modify and develop the refined design options. The team creates diagrams for the Interim Presentation. Members of the community are welcome to talk with the team, give ideas, and check out the drawings. There's no need to schedule an individual meeting to talk with the team, unless you want to discuss something like a real estate sale or development project that requires confidentiality.

Work Session and Individual meetings, Session #4:
The design team continues to modify and develop the refined design options. Members of the community are welcome to talk with the team, give ideas, and check out the drawings. There's no need to schedule an individual meeting to talk with the team, unless you want to discuss something like a real estate sale or development project that requires confidentiality.

Work Session, Session #5:
The design team finalizes the draft master plan(s) on Friday and prepares conceptual illustrations and diagrams to convey the master plan concepts to the community, based on all the feedback and input received over the week. Members of the community are welcome to talk with the team and check out the drawings although no individual meetings are scheduled because of the intensity of the Friday design session.

Special Focus Session:
The Special Focus Session will be used to discuss the issues relating to the property on East Main Street that has been home to the Sam Bass League ballfields. There has been a proposal to develop that property, owned by the Round Rock Community Foundation, into a social service provider site. We know this issue is of importance to folks living downtown as well as the Community Foundation so we've set aside this time to specifically address this topic and try to leave the remainder of our time to work on the many other issues related to downtown's redevelopment.



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