Wellington Ave, Windsor, Ontario

Above, a wall between two houses covered in vinyl siding.

Danielle and I were on our way downtown the other day and we took Wellington after I forgot to turn where I normally do at Partington. There were architectural and infrastructural weirdness that actually had us stop, turn around, and then pull over to take these shots. It also made me anxious to start on the drifts we’ve discussed doing.  More time to explore neighbourhoods slowly would be a lot of fun.

Above, a park that has a bizarrely designed planter (as far as Windsor’s standards go).

And, finally, a house that has this modernist addition on the front of it to feature a large circular wooden accent that actually frames a normal wooden door.

Janine Marchessault & the Leona Drive Project

Photo by wyliepoon.

A couple months ago I attended a talk hosted by Janine Marchessault on the Leona Drive project, which is a collaboration between The Public Access Collective and L.O.T. : Experiments in Urban Research (Collective).

Justin mentioned the Leona Drive Project back in 2009, but for a refresher: The Leona Drive project commissioned artist projects for a site specific exhibition in a series of six vacant bungalows slated for demolition by HYATT HOMES, a developer in Willowdale, Ontario (in the Yonge and Finch area of the GTA). The artists worked with a variety of media: audio, cell phones with GPS, architectural installation, projection, photography, sculpture and performance for a period of two weeks in the fall of 2009.

Continue reading “Janine Marchessault & the Leona Drive Project”

Highlighting / Decorating Derelict Buildings

Buildings In Liverpool

Though I’m not sure that “decorating” is the correct term (my vocabulary is failing me right now), I know that this idea has come up a number of times in various discussions on what to do with the houses on Indian Road, and other abandoned properties throughout the city. Doing something like painting the boards over the windows on abandoned buildings highlights them in a way that helps to keep them from fading into the periphery, while also arguably helping to raise the aesthetic of the surrounding area.

A similar project involving literally highlighting urban blight that’s probably more well-known was the Detroit Demolition Disneyland series of interventions where buildings marked for demolition by the city of Detroit were painted bright orange by an anonymous group. I think it worked for what is was, though the issue is entirely different than what’s going on here in Windsor. 

So, do we need to consider tackling the vacant property throughout the city? I would be curious to figure out just how many vacancies we face, but beyond that, does a project like the one above, which is in Liverpool, do anything else other than decorate the neighbourhood, and is that enough?

[via Wooster Collective]