Tuesday, October 4, 2022

The Department of Landscape Architecture and Regional Planning at the University of Massachusetts is working with the Village of Saxton's River in the Town of Rockingham, Vermont to reimagine the west end of their Main Street which is Vermont Hwy. 121 along with a site with a vacant building (37 Main Street) between the Post Office and Main Street Arts Building.  The team of graduate students led by Department Chair Robert Ryan and graduate assistant Julia Slater are conducting public meetings and other community events to gather the public's viewpoint. A team of students from the graduate Regional Planning Public Participation class taught by Prof. Elisabeth Infield honing their new skills by helping at the public meetings and other events along with PhD student Hongbing Tang.  A meeting on Thursday, Sept. 29th in the Main Streets Arts building was packed with over 50 local residents who gave their opinions regarding the character of Main Street and the activities they want in the Village.  On Saturday, Oct. 1, the UMass team set up an activity table in front of the Post Office and Village Store where over 30 residents stopped by to give their opinions on images for the future of Main Street.  The team will use these results to develop three alternatives for the 37 Main Street site as well as the west end of Main Street for a public meeting on the evening of November 2. The Saxtons River village study is an example of the community-engaged planning and design work by the LARP Department's Center for Resilient MetroRegions (CRM).