Ask An Architect with Josh Shatkin on Friday April 20th, 12n to 1pm

Drop in, and ask questions about architecture & design. Co-sponsored by the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Gainesville Chapter, and the Florida Community Design Center (FCDC). Location: FCDC, 101 N. Main Street, Gainesville FL 32601.

Free on-street parking along N. Main St (between University Ave and 2nd Ave); along NE 1st St (between University Ave and NE 1st Ave).

Meter Parking only 25 center per 30 minutes along NE 1st Ave (between NE 1st St and N. Main St)

Internship Opportunities at the Florida Community Design Center

The Florida Community Design Center (FCDC) is excited to announce two internships now available through the Design Center. We are looking for two energetic and enterprising individuals with experience and education related to planning, sustainability, policy, and/or economics to join our team for the spring, summer, or fall semester. Interns will take on a semester project, as well as work as a team to create publications and media to support the FCDC efforts.

Take a look at these job descriptions. Community programs and projects serve the Gainesville, Alachua County, or other Florida community by providing investment and support for people who need it most. All too often, the projects and communities that need the most support get the least. If you have experience working at a local community level, let us know. We are happy to field any questions. Send us your application with attached resume, cover letter, and any other qualifying information. We can’t wait to hear from you!

Community Projects Intern

● This intern will be responsible for staying in touch with one or more community projects. They will need to stay on top of each project they work on, and develop and commit to a timeline for each project. Finding the resources for each project and supporting the project team will be crucial. Providing support and outreach for each project will help it succeed.

● This intern will be responsible for requesting assistance from local professionals, other interns, university faculty, city staff, and anyone that is willing to donate their time, money, or energy to help see the projects succeed.

● This intern will help support other intern’s projects and provide resources and assistance to the FCDC team when needed.

Community Programs Intern

● This intern will be responsible for keeping the FCDC in touch with the community programs that operate within the city and county and providing them resources and support to succeed in their goals.

● This intern will write grants to provide support for the FCDC, the projects that flow through the FCDC, and the community programs that support local people. Previous grant writing experience is a plus.

● This intern will keep the FCDC updated of important volunteer opportunities and provide the outreach and support for some of these programs.

● Knowledge of various outreach tools from social media to newspapers and publications will help this intern succeed and provide support for community’s programs.

The two internships being offered will encompass the following responsibilities within the FCDC:

● One spring or fall semester part time internship commitment of 300 hours. That’s approximately 20 hours a week, half of which can be on your own time, half at the FCDC.

● Interns will select between multiple projects to allocate their work and resources. These projects can range from design projects to community development programs. All projects that flow through the FCDC are sustainability related. Previous volunteers and interns have worked on topics such as tiny houses and affordable housing, park design, landscape architecture, downtown parking, local business advocacy, and bike trails, among others. Choose a project that YOU want to work on, and you get to form a team to work on that project. This will encompass the majority of the experience.

● Interns will collectively be responsible for planning, designing, and distributing a monthly publication that will be shared with leaders in local government, business, and other organizations.

At least two students will be selected for these positions. Again, these are unpaid internships. If you have an internship requirement within your college or major, we will assist you in seeking to structure the experience to count as practical experience. For example, the Sustainability and the Built Environment major requires either a 6-credit internship or a 6-credit Practicum course. These internships will satisfy the Practicum course for SBE majors.

Here is the Google doc application to apply! Download it, complete it, and return it to Or print it out and drop it by our office at 101 North Main Street.

Please include your resume, a brief cover letter telling us why you would like this opportunity, and any other qualifying material you would like to include (such as references, or examples of past work you have completed).

Please feel free to contact us with any questions! Email us at, or call us during regular business hours.

Randy Wells, Executive Director: (352) 318-9410

Executive Director of FCDC wins 2016 Impact Award

From Business in Greater Gainesville Magazine

Executive director of the Florida Community Design Center Randolf Wells has advocated for returning vacant property to a productive use for the surrounding neighborhood and the city as a whole for seven years. This year his efforts were successful as the city formally accepted ownership of the closed US Army Reserve facility in east Gainesville, and repurposed the building as the new home of a growing local manufacturing firm Phalanx Defense Systems. The grounds have been designated as a new community park dedicated to the reservists who served and trained on this site for 51 years.

“My passion is finding creative ways to build capacity within our community,” explained Wells. “I help facilitate this by bringing together different groups who can combine resources and complement one another to achieve a shared vision.”

Wells volunteers as executive director of the Florida Community Design Center, but also serves on the boards of Friends of GRACE Marketplace, Welcoming Gainesville and Bike Florida. He is a member of the organizing committee for Bulla Cubana, a Cuban cultural festival planned for Gainesville between January and March 2017. In November, he will be on the Gainesville delegation (for the second time) to visit our Israeli and Palestinian sister cities of Kfar Saba and Qalqilya.

Get to Know Randy:

What is your go-to coffee order?

Cafe con leche with plenty of sugar (my grandfather called it “kid’s coffee”)

Who had the biggest impact on your life?

As a child, the biggest impact on my life was my grandfather. As an adult, the biggest has been my wife, Ondine

Public Meeting Planned for Depot Avenue/SE 7th Avenue and SE 4th Street Reconstruction Projects


I’d like to invite you to a public meeting on October 12th to discuss the coordination of the Depot Avenue/SE 7th Avenue and the SE 4th Street construction projects. There will be a brief presentation describing the scope of work, the anticipated schedule, and temporary traffic control being considered. I hope you can attend and please help spread the word to any friends and neighbors you think may be interested.

What: Public Meeting about Depot Ave/SE 7th Avenue & 4th Street Reconstruction
Location: Historic Depot Building
Hosted by: City of Gainesville Public Works Department

If you have any further questions for me in the interim or would like to meet on site to discuss project specifics, please let me know and I’d be happy to meet when convenient for you.


Stefan Broadus, PE
Project Engineer IV
Public Works – City of Gainesville
(352) 393-8406

Community Design Workshop for South Main Street

Greetings Community Stakeholders:

With the recent opening of Depot Park, the Gainesville Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) is seeking input and feedback from the public on possible improvements to the segment of South Main Street between Depot Avenue and South 16th Avenue. The CRA invites its citizens and stakeholders to participate in the design process by creating your ideal street. We are asking the public to submit designs for the corridor that best accomplish the project Guiding Principles as established from citizen and CRA Board input.

Multiple opportunities over the next several weeks will be available for citizens to submit their ideas for how the 100′ of right-of-way along South Main Street could be configured to address the project Guiding Principles of:
(1) improve safety & connectivity for motorists, pedestrians, & bicyclists
(2) address increased parking demands associated with Depot Park and the Cade Museum
(3) improve the identity & visual character of the corridor
(4) balance the flow & accessibility of the street for all users

The first way to participate is to build and submit your concept by utilizing an interactive on-line design tool. This web-based program will allow you to insert and prioritize various streetscape elements such as vehicular travel lanes, on-street parking, bicycle facilities, landscaping, sidewalks, etc. while maintaining the 100’ of right-of-way.

Visit the following link for a complete overview of this process and how to submit your designs! Peak Democracy South Main Street (

The second way to participate is by attending the planned Community Design Workshop any time between 12P-8P on Monday, August 29 or any time between 9A-12P on Tuesday, August 30 at the Gainesville Fine Arts Association @ 1314 South Main Street. The public is invited to DROP-IN at their convenience during the two-day workshop to take part in the design process of South Main Street by building an interactive model of your proposed street. Your design concept will then be recorded, documented, and eventually presented to the CRA Board for their consideration. CRA staff and its design team will be on-hand to assist you in the process and answer any questions.

Please consider sharing this announcement and we thank you for participating in this project and look forward to receiving your creative input!


Andrew Meeker, RLA
Project Manager
Gainesville Community Redevelopment Agency
802 NW 5th Avenue, Suite 200, Gainesville, FL 32601
Office 352-393-8205 | Fax: 352.334.2132 |

Meet the Artist in Residence: Oliver Norden


Editor’s Note: Since June 2016, Oliver Norden has served as Artist in Residence for the Design Center. Here, he describes the unique ideas and talents that he brings to his music, sculpture, and other artistic pursuits. Come out for ArtWalk on July 29th, 2016 between 7pm and 10pm to meet the artist Oliver Norden.

Creating an Emotional Landscape in Music and Art
by Oliver Norden

For my first thirty years, I lived in Europe, growing up in Belgium. During my childhood in Antwerp, I was profoundly influenced by my parents’ artistic interests and the importance they placed on culture. The placed a high value on the richness and variety that life has to offer.

Growing up, I visited museums all over Europe and viewed the great works by the old masters. Music and art filled our home always. My parents liked to listen to world music. But more than anything, we listened to classical music.

My mother is a sculptor now living in Antwerp, Belgium. My father was an antiques dealer. My brothers are still antiques dealers and living in Europe.

At the age of fourteen, I began to study piano. I was classically trained in my twenties. As a teenager, I spent entire afternoons in the library in Antwerp where I could listen to vinyl recordings of the great composers and at the same time read original sheet music by the composer. I was especially influenced by Chopin, Beethoven, and Mozart. As a young adult, I studied art in college and eventually earned my Master’s Degree in sculpture.

I remember going to auctions at Christie’s and Sotheby’s with my mother. Once, I saw a Kandinsky painting for sale. Like Kandinsky, I was interested in the colors and shapes that can be found in abstract art and music.

Kandinsky once wrote, “Music is the ultimate teacher.” He sometimes used musical terms to label his works, calling them improvisations and compositions. Music had a strong influence on the early development of abstract art. Music and abstract art do not describe the exterior world, but rather the internal world of emotions. Kandinsky’s series of paintings called compositions were primarily concerned with evoking a spiritual resonance between the viewer and artist. In the same way, I explore emotional expression in my music and art, creating a resonance between my piano and my listeners.

I moved to the United States in 1999 and settled in Florida, because I had family living here. I began to develop my visual art, working mostly in airbrush and sculpting. Profoundly influenced by my new environment, I began to explore improvisational variations of my favorite composers on the piano.

My piano improvisations have much in common with my sculpture. Using harmonic chords influenced by Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, and Mozart, I weave a free flowing, textured, and three dimensional form for the listener. Interwoven through the piece, I insert moments of dissonance and then pull you back in the harmonic. In this way, I give my audience and emotional landscape that we both can explore. I create an emotional vibration that resonates through my audience.