Planning for Higher Education Journal

Community Revitalization

The Restorative Properties of Schools
Journal Cover
From Volume 43 Number 4 | July–September 2015
By Merilee Meacock
Planning Types: Campus Planning

Urban centers are on the rise due, in part, to the steadfast commitment of their citizens, governments, local businesses, and educational institutions. Institutions of higher education, particularly those holding real estate assets and viewed as major stakeholders in their host cities, are forging ahead, leading the way in the next generation of sustainability—that of social responsibility—and believing with great conviction that the foundations of learning, and their architects, can and should aim to sustain not just the environment around schools, colleges, and universities, but the communities surrounding them as well.
These institutions’ renovations of older buildings, repurposed as venues for learning and community building, become three-dimensional opportunities for public outreach and shared resources, serving to reignite a city’s spirit, restore its pride, and lift up its own. What makes the community stronger makes the school stronger. From the possibility of improved transit and education, residence and recreation to the bright hope of a revitalized local economy, educational institutions and architectural firms, in partnership, have the power to empower people beyond the traditional campus border.

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