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College of Design

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Exploring Rural Design

Greetings readers! Hopefully February has been treating you well. It has been a crazy busy past few weeks as the semester kicks into full speed alongside my work and internship obligations - but busy is good! This week I'd like to share with you all my recent research and learning experiences in the area of rural design. Rural design is something you may not have heard of before, largely because it is considered an emerging design discipline focused on addressing issues in rural areas by means of research-based design principles. Basically, rural design seeks to pursue an equitable balance between the human uses or rural lands and the natural ecosystems that exist in the area - a "best fit" between human use and natural functions. Coming from a rural area, I personally find this emerging area of design to be both challenging and environmentally responsible.

rurdezz.jpgLuckily for my fellow students and me, our very own College of Design in partnership with the College of Food, Agricultural, and Natural Resource Sciences is at the forefront of this research-driven design discipline and is home to the Center for Rural Design (CRD) - "CRD is an award winning, multi-disciplinary research and design studio that empowers communities to find innovative solutions to problems in rural Minnesota, the Midwest, and globally."

I've been doing a lot of research and related work on rural design as I am currently taking a course called Rural Housing Issues taught by housing studies professor and CRD faculty member Dr. Ann Ziebarth, who provides our class with a wealth of knowledge and insight on the topic. Very interesting stuff!

Hope you all go out and learn something new today!

- Jesse LaMaack
Housing Studies, B.S.