Have you ever experienced the gritty charm of downtown Asheville’s largely undiscovered Carolina Lane? Perhaps you are more familiar with its more famous cousin, Chicken Alley? On May 5, these alleyways and nearby streets will host a Creative Intervention – that is, a one-day event that prototypes design interventions and art-based solutions that shift how the public interacts with urban spaces.
The event is free and open to the public. It is one component of the Broadway Cultural Gateway project, an effort to transform Broadway Street into a central artery for a vibrant arts and cultural district stretching from its intersection with Woodfin Street to the cultural attractions of Pack Place.
Saturday, May 5
3:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Creative Intervention Event
Broadway Cultural Gateway Study Area:
Broadway Street to N. Lexington, Walnut Street to Woodfin
The Asheville Design Center (ADC), the Center for Craft, UNC Asheville students and faculty, UNCA STEAM Studio, Asheville Downtown Association, and League of Creative Interventionists, among others, will activate the study area to engage the public around what’s possible. For example, the Center for Craft will host a pop-up makerspace and ‘repair cafe’ in its Carolina Lane-facing basement, along with a temporary parklet in front of the Broadway Street entrance.
“We believe that Asheville’s future is largely dependent on the health of our creative sector and its relationship to the built environment,” says Stephanie Moore, Executive Director of the Center for Craft. “We are thrilled to be working with the such a strong team of community partners, including ADC, to prototype potential future scenarios on May 5th. The event is an opportunity to creatively engage the community for input and ideas, which will inform a broader community vision for the neighborhood,” says Moore.
• art installations and live performances by UNC-Asheville students and faculty Temporary Pop-up Makerspace & ‘Repair Cafe’ at the Center for Craft, including interactive activities offered by Center for Craft, Penland School of Crafts, UNCA STEAM Studio, Horse & Hero, Roots & Wings, Asheville Makers, Diamond Brand, Echoview Fiber Mill.
• “Ghost Signs” Historic Tour with Jack Thomson of the Preservation Society of Asheville & Buncombe County
• LEAF Easel Rider Van
• Blue Ridge Public Radio pop-up cafe
• Buchi Kombucha
• Asheville Buskers Collective
• American Myth Center
The May 5 Creative Intervention Event is an opportunity for the public to experience the potential of a “creative intervention” to transform difficult and unexpected public spaces. ADC’s team of design and planning experts will collect community feedback and data from the event to inform both a long-term implementation plan for the Broadway Cultural Gateway project.
“As part of this design experiment, we’re keeping Carolina Lane open to cars and trucks. The alley is used for parking, to access private garages and by delivery drivers and garbage trucks,” explains Chris Joyell, director of the Asheville Design Center (a program of MountainTrue). “That’s not going to change, so it’s important for us to test how pedestrians and vehicles can safely share the same place.”