Reclaiming the riverfront as catalyst for neighborhood revitalization : an urban design proposal along the White River in Muncie, Indiana
This creative project explores urban riverfront redevelopment as a catalyst for revitalizing Muncie’s urban neighborhoods. The project illustrates urban design benefits of enhancing human interaction with natural river environments. It considers the White River corridor as a recreational and natural system that can improve the quality of life for contiguous neighborhoods by adding social and economic value. Located in Muncie, Indiana, this creative project defines how dynamic cities benefit from mixed-use riverside redevelopment with leisure activities. It discusses why riverfronts are important recreational assets for cities; how riverfronts can provide opportunities for leisure, and time away from the cares and toils of urban life; and how urban riverfront plans include leisure and recreational activities. Research includes a literature review and three case studies of Midwestern city riverfronts. Findings are summarized as best practice urban design principles, with criteria for recreation, protecting natural environments, and housing, street, and block typologies. The creative project includes evaluation of potential social and economic benefits of the riverfront redevelopment.