4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Quartyard courts the Village

Disruptive architecture grads setting up "experiment in flexible temporary urbanism" on vacant lot

Pork sandwiches and beer in a garden in an empty downtown lot? And next to them, a folk concert tent next to a farmer's market next to a play park for your dog next to boutiques and cafes in shipping containers?

Tactical urbanism, baby, and it's hitting East Village right in its eyesore heart at Park and Market.

I've been passing this block-size patch of wasteland for months, years, so long I hardly notice it any more.

Seems it has been held in limbo because no developer has the cash to invest in a mega-project right now. So the City, which owns the land, can't sell and won't rent out space if you can't buy the whole deal.

Doggy park's part of the plan

Until now. Until Philip Auchettl, David Loewnstein, Adam Jubela, Jason Grauten, and, yes, Bob Filner started thinking outside the proverbial box. The first four guys are all grad students from NewSchool of Architecture right across Park Boulevard who had this idea: why not make a pop-up temporary park and social gathering place with converted shipping containers to house cafes and shops, a beer garden, and provide spots for food trucks — the first leaders of tactical urbanism — to come and go, then add an actual park for walking all those dogs East Villagers seem to have, plus a venue for concerts, so EV peeps can have an actual social place to go, congregate, escape the whole grid life of downtown? And be prepared to up-stakes as soon as the City finds a serious buyer for the land, and take the roadshow to the next vacant lot?

The idea has taken. Pipe-laying ditch-diggers are out churning the ground and shipping containers have been lowered onto the gravel, and you can see something's about to pop.

Just got hold hold of Philip Auchettl — Aussie, turns out — one of the four NewSchool students turning this crazy pie-in-sky thesis into honest-to-goodness hard-nosed reality.

Piping's being laid while banners go up

"It's an experiment in flexible temporary urbanism," he says. "As soon as we went crowd-sourcing, we got $60,000 in 30 days through Kickstarter, just about all from locals. That's when we knew we were onto something."

Of course it has taken way longer and cost a lot more than what they laid out to their thesis prof. "Our original idea was to open it on our graduation day. That was a year ago."

And the budget? Up towards the half-mil mark, so I heard.

But along the way they inspired powerful backers, including Mayor Bob Filner, and then Todd Gloria and now Kevin Faulkoner.

So that first cup of coffee? I see Meshuggah Shack Coffee already has their banner up. "We're hoping for a soft opening January first," says Auchettl, "and then the grand opening sometime in February."

But will East Village actually come?

"Well, first thing we did was put up a questionnaire on the hurricane wire fence, 'What do you want here?' We got 1,000 responses written right there in a few days. Okay, some wanted a stadium, one guy wanted a snake pit, but whatever, we tapped into a huge energy and excitement out there. We're giving them what I think most wanted."

So hey: Bottom-up designing! Is this a new democratic day or wot?

More on this when I get that first cup of coffee.

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

Driving a plane on Interstate 5, buying liquor in Tijuana

Women who love heroin, Seal lover on the Silver Strand, why Dean Martin greater than Elvis
Next Article

From the mind of Luc Besson

District B13 introduced American audiences to parkour

Pork sandwiches and beer in a garden in an empty downtown lot? And next to them, a folk concert tent next to a farmer's market next to a play park for your dog next to boutiques and cafes in shipping containers?

Tactical urbanism, baby, and it's hitting East Village right in its eyesore heart at Park and Market.

I've been passing this block-size patch of wasteland for months, years, so long I hardly notice it any more.

Seems it has been held in limbo because no developer has the cash to invest in a mega-project right now. So the City, which owns the land, can't sell and won't rent out space if you can't buy the whole deal.

Doggy park's part of the plan

Until now. Until Philip Auchettl, David Loewnstein, Adam Jubela, Jason Grauten, and, yes, Bob Filner started thinking outside the proverbial box. The first four guys are all grad students from NewSchool of Architecture right across Park Boulevard who had this idea: why not make a pop-up temporary park and social gathering place with converted shipping containers to house cafes and shops, a beer garden, and provide spots for food trucks — the first leaders of tactical urbanism — to come and go, then add an actual park for walking all those dogs East Villagers seem to have, plus a venue for concerts, so EV peeps can have an actual social place to go, congregate, escape the whole grid life of downtown? And be prepared to up-stakes as soon as the City finds a serious buyer for the land, and take the roadshow to the next vacant lot?

The idea has taken. Pipe-laying ditch-diggers are out churning the ground and shipping containers have been lowered onto the gravel, and you can see something's about to pop.

Just got hold hold of Philip Auchettl — Aussie, turns out — one of the four NewSchool students turning this crazy pie-in-sky thesis into honest-to-goodness hard-nosed reality.

Piping's being laid while banners go up

"It's an experiment in flexible temporary urbanism," he says. "As soon as we went crowd-sourcing, we got $60,000 in 30 days through Kickstarter, just about all from locals. That's when we knew we were onto something."

Of course it has taken way longer and cost a lot more than what they laid out to their thesis prof. "Our original idea was to open it on our graduation day. That was a year ago."

And the budget? Up towards the half-mil mark, so I heard.

But along the way they inspired powerful backers, including Mayor Bob Filner, and then Todd Gloria and now Kevin Faulkoner.

So that first cup of coffee? I see Meshuggah Shack Coffee already has their banner up. "We're hoping for a soft opening January first," says Auchettl, "and then the grand opening sometime in February."

But will East Village actually come?

"Well, first thing we did was put up a questionnaire on the hurricane wire fence, 'What do you want here?' We got 1,000 responses written right there in a few days. Okay, some wanted a stadium, one guy wanted a snake pit, but whatever, we tapped into a huge energy and excitement out there. We're giving them what I think most wanted."

So hey: Bottom-up designing! Is this a new democratic day or wot?

More on this when I get that first cup of coffee.

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

Tatis Jr. suffers “Jacob’s joint” injury as punishment for his anointing as Padres’ savior

Touched By An Angel
Next Article

Former Tijuana mayor charged with embezzlement

Plumbing infrastructure grants to Puerta de Hierro neighborhood
Comments
0

Be the first to leave a comment.

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Art Reviews — W.S. Di Piero's eye on exhibits Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Best Buys — San Diego shopping Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits City Lights — News and politics Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Famous Former Neighbors — Next-door celebs Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town Here's the Deal — Chad Deal's watering holes Just Announced — The scoop on shows Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Of Note — Concert picks Out & About — What's Happening Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Pour Over — Grab a cup Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Drinks All Around — Bartenders' drink recipes Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Sports — Athletics without gush Street Style — San Diego streets have style Suit Up — Fashion tips for dudes Theater Reviews — Local productions Theater antireviews — Narrow your search Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Waterfront — All things ocean Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close