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Youth Design Durham! Presentation

Durham City Hall



Our group of young creatives presented their vision for a Third Place to the Durham community at City Hall on June 8th. A Third Place for the young people of Durham is a trusted spot outside of school and work where they can connect and gather with others and 'just be'. The presentation was the culmination of a workshop series that took place over the 2023-'24 school year.


Reflections from the participants of the workshop series:

'I am going forward knowing that architecture is creating our intangible ideas tangible, and that I will advocate for my people.'


'I'm moving forward knowing that we can work together to create something beautiful, and that architecture is for everyone.'


'I'm going forward knowing that there is power in building community.'



This workshop series was primarily funded by the Office on Youth (OOY), a division of the Durham City Manager's Office. In 2019, the OOY launched the Durham Youth Listening Project as a part of Durham's Strategic Youth Initiative, with the goal of hearing directly from Durham's young people about their needs, dreams, and challenges. Their findings reported the need for a place dedicated to youth, that is safe, free, and provides activities and opportunities for leadership.


THINKING ABOUT ARCHITECTURE MEANS...


'Thinking outside the box.'


'Looking at different angles of things and creating something great.'


WE CAN...


'Work together to create a safe space where people from all walks of life feel comfortable.'


'Make a safe place for teens to get the extra help, or the down time they need with everything going on in their life.'


'Make a difference.'


THERE IS POWER IN...


'Community.'

'The minds of the youth.'

'Us.'


THIS IS A PLACE FOR...


'Creation, imagination, self expression, community.'


'Teens to come in and have a nice 3rd place. They can play games here, do work, and even find opportunities for jobs and volunteering.'



THINKING ABOUT SPACE MEANS...


'Unlimited outcomes.'


'Trying to fill space with its purpose, leaving no corner untouched.'


COMMUNITY IS...


'Culture.'


'Something that can be built and brought together in a time of need.'


WE HAVE THE POWER TO...


'Work together to create anything.'


'Build a place where making a community and space is its whole purpose.'



With professional architects and designers as guides, the group of young creatives have learned the process and tools of design through the premise of a Third Place on a specific site in Durham. In addition, the workshops have impacted the youth by exposing them to architecture and design, teaching them new skills, and fostering relationships with design professionals.


This project was realized from the support of local government, businesses and community members. We are deeply grateful to our partners and sponsors: Durham's Office on Youth, Durham County Library Maker + Steam Services, Triangle Community Foundation, Self-Help Ventures Fund, Gateway Building Company, and BuildSense.




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