Charlottesville’s New Quirk Hotel Anchors a Main Street in Flux

Breathless encomiums about Charlottesville’s renaissance over the past decade are easy to understand. There’s been lots of housing and commercial infill, especially along stretches of road between town and gown outposts. The county’s infrastructure projects ringing the city have started to address (but still not solve) the traffic congestion. The newly completed South Lawn and hospital complex expansion projects are marvels of civil engineering. The Rotunda recently reemerged after a multimillion-dollar renovation as a model of thoughtfulness and probity. In parts of town where tuition-paying parents might have a Coke and a burger, things are generally looking leafier and cleaner.

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Perspectives on Justice: Rasheda Tripp on Justice as a Noun and a Verb

Equity, diversity, and inclusion have been adopted into workplace culture and studio programming. But, justice — as a principle and directive — has catalyzed the effort for fundamental awareness and evident change within architecture. Why is justice a necessary design ethic? Virginia’s preeminent voices in equity, diversity, and inclusion weigh-in on why this question matters. As part of this series, Rasheda Tripp, AIA, an architect at GuernseyTingle, says that for justice to occur, it must be an ideal and a plan of action. “You have to throw big ideas up to make something stick. It can’t be a precise suggestion about improving things because it will get lost in the noise. But, then you have to follow the big idea with effective effort.”

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Notes on the Williamsburg Experiment

There’s an irony in writing a true account about the living history museum at Colonial Williamsburg. Its eponymous foundation and its curators have grappled with the same two questions for generations: Whose histories do we tell and how shall we recreate them? Today, Williamsburg faces a new set of questions beyond the facts recorded in the governours’ ledgers:  Whose truths do we tell and how shall we present them in concert together, especially in light of the 1619 Project, the Black Lives Matter movement, and Critical Race Theory, whose progenitors demand more than new lines of inquiry. They demanded action. Williamsburg has made clear efforts to juggle archaeology with interpretation, and it has also attempted to address the indictment of sophistry among its critics, which are legion. But, can the sites of Williamsburg’s 301 acres respond to our moment now?

In our post-vaccination world, Colonial Williamsburg is worth revisiting this summer, as I did in June—not for what its evidence reveals about Colonial America, but for our opportunity to change the course of what I’ll call the Williamsburg Experiment, ongoing for more than 380 years.

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Perspectives on Justice: John Spencer on Learning What Fair Really Means

Equity, diversity, and inclusion have been adopted into workplace culture and studio programming. But, justice — as a principle and directive — has catalyzed the effort for fundamental awareness and evident change within architecture. Why is justice a necessary design ethic? Virginia’s preeminent voices in equity, diversity, and inclusion weigh-in on why this question matters. As part of this series, Noland Medalist John Spencer, FAIA, says that justice is only achievable if individuals can accept fairness and practice it. “Subjects we talked about 50 years ago were not considered part of architecture, and subjects we’re talking about now are sometimes not considered to be part of architecture,” he says. “While talking has gotten easier, we still have to address the problem.”

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Perspectives on Justice: Kendall Nicholson on Goals and Processes

Equity, diversity, and inclusion have been adopted into workplace culture and studio programming. But, justice — as a principle and directive — has catalyzed the effort for fundamental awareness and evident change within architecture. Why is justice a necessary design ethic? Virginia’s preeminent voices in equity, diversity, and inclusion weigh-in on why this question matters. As part of this series, educator, researcher, and member of AIA Virginia’s J.E.D.I. Committee, Kendall Nicholson, Assoc. AIA, talks about empathy and responsibility as the foundations of justice. “My hope,” he says, “is that architects and designers continue to develop their senses in the area of racial equity and advocate for the reallocation of resources based on history and systems.”

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