Penn graduate students design new concepts for East Fremont Street in Las Vegas

July 30, 2002

PHILADELPHIA -- Las Vegas city officials are putting their faith in the products of a University of Pennsylvania design studio taught by Susan Nigra Snyder and George E. Thomas. Instead of seeing a down-and-out neighborhood suited only for demolition and new construction, Snyder and Thomas's graduate students saw a swan where most see an ugly duckling.

By incorporating the 1950's car-culture buildings along East Fremont Street, they saw the opportunity to create a hip retro district that would tie East Fremont to other successful urban districts. By incorporating bars, jazz clubs and galleries, they propose to enhance the entertainment district that the city has begun to develop to the west.

"This street is part of our history," Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman, a Penn Law School graduate, said. "It's the urban fabric that we can build upon to be the hottest place in town. We can't write off the qualities and characteristics of this great area."

Students from the architecture, city planning, historic preservation, landscape architecture and the fine arts departments in Penn's Graduate School of Fine Arts visited the city in February and spent the next three months researching, planning and finally designing schemes that were presented in a review in May.

Through the assistance of the Fremont Street Experience and Goodman, Snyder and Thomas brought the student projects back to Las Vegas in early July to exhibit their work. A 100-foot window in a closed restaurant fronting on East Fremont now contains core elements of the students' projects, which are aimed at opening discussion about the future of the street. According to Snyder and Thomas, these are not intended for construction but, can begin to create a broader vision that will serve as a basis for planning and implementation. Most important, the student work serves a catalyst for changing the way people think about the street.

"These conceptual designs will create an alternative to what Las Vegas typically offers to its residents and tourists," said Las Vegas Councilman Lawrence Weekly. "There are limited choices in what you can do in Vegas. Creating an entertainment district with clubs, restaurants and bars in one area is a fabulous idea. The best part about this project is that we will re-energize the area with the historic architecture that already exists."

In his Las Vegas Review Journal column for July 14, John Smith rhetorically asked if Penn's professors and their students had spent too much time in the sun or had found an appropriate vision for The Real Las Vegas. He concluded, that the time had come to take a chance on Fremont Street and the visions the Penn studio presented.
-end-


University of Pennsylvania

Related Vision Articles from Brightsurf:

School-based vision screening programs found 1 in 10 kids had vision problems
A school-based vision screening program in kindergarten, shown to be effective at identifying untreated vision problems in 1 in 10 students, could be useful to implement widely in diverse communities, according to new research in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal) http://www.cmaj.ca/lookup/doi/10.1503/cmaj.191085.

Restoring vision by gene therapy
Latest scientific findings give hope for people with incurable retinal degeneration.

Vision loss influences perception of sound
People with severe vision loss can less accurately judge the distance of nearby sounds, potentially putting them more at risk of injury.

'Time is vision' after a stroke
University of Rochester researchers studied stroke patients who experienced vision loss and found that the patients retained some visual abilities immediately after the stroke but these abilities diminished gradually and eventually disappeared permanently after approximately six months.

Improving the vision of self-driving vehicles
There may be a better way for autonomous vehicles to learn how to drive themselves: by watching humans.

A new model of vision
MIT researchers have developed a computer model of face processing that could reveal how the brain produces richly detailed visual representations so quickly.

Vision may be the real cause of children's problems
Do you have poor motor skills or struggle to read, write or solve math problems?

Shark and ray vision comes into focus
Until now, little has been known about the evolution of vision in cartilaginous fishes, particularly sharks and their genetic cousins, the rays.

The birth of vision, from the retina to the brain
How do neurons differentiate to become individual components of the visual system?

Tracing the evolution of vision
The function of the visual photopigment rhodopsin and its action in the retina to facilitate vision is well understood.

Read More: Vision News and Vision Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.