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Photos: Village Building Convergence – Intersection Repair

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Just returned from City Repair's 7th Annual Village Building Convergence in Portland, Oregon where hundreds of neighbors, students, and volunteers are taking back their streets to make them more livable, and community-oriented. Of the dozens of seminars, celebrations and building projects going on, StreetFilms loves the Intersection Repair.

An Intersection Repair usually involves painting an intersection with an elaborate design that creates a community gathering space and hopefully cajoles drivers to slow down; to give them a signal that they are entering a neighborhood. But it goes far beyond the paint on the asphalt as neighbors at some locations further enhance the experience over time by adding benches, establishing community bulletin boards, introducing gardens & art, etc. - all of which entice neighbors interact more and care about the commons outside their homes.

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When City Repair first attempted some of these events many years ago, the Portland Office of Transportation (PDOT) did not sancation it. Undaunted, communities went ahead and did them anyway! Thankfully, today times have changed: PDOT has an official liasion to City Repair who helps coordinate permitting and street closures and also oversees some of the design standards. Yup, there is a StreetFilm in the works that may post by the end of the week, but for now enjoy the photos below.

Painting the petals on "Frida's Tree".

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The kids really get busy and paint all day.

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This year some of the designs were quite elaborate.

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Below is "Share-It Square" commons in the Selwood area of Portland.

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The swirl has amazing detail.

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"Share-It Square" has many places to relax, meet or contemplate the day.

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Bike commuters or strollers can take a break and fix themselves a hot cup of tea at the "Tea Station", complete with mugs, sugar, and all the fixings.

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Here's some dude taking the opportunity to soak up the car-free rays at "Sunnyside Piazza" which incorporates the Fiboanacci Series in to its street mural and surrounding sidewalk amenities.
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So what do you say New York? The time is ripe. (My paintbrush stands ready.)