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April 2015

Volume 1, No. 2

The Washington Park Beat

The Community Liaison ......1

Charles Carmickle, in middle,

discussing community design
solutions with Professor Arijit
Sen and graduate student
Michael Babbits

Golden Opportunity .............2

CoxR esidence......................3
Washington Park Community
Design: Visualizing
Opportunities ........................4

The Community Liaison

By Milan Outlaw
Ive lived the life of ten men,
says Charles Carmickle, a
Washington Park resident who
hails from Louisiana.

Around the Neighborhood

Send in your photos from
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showcased in The Washington
Park Newsletter.

Currently, Mr. Carmickle is

a retiree, but prior to settling
down in Washington Park
Mr. Carmickle had numerous
occupations ranging from a
laboratory technician at the Fermi
National Accelerator Laboratory
in Illinois to a music promoter
where he worked with many wellknown 1970s and 1980s R&B
musical performers.
Carmickle also served as the
all-white suburb in the Southern
United States. He is also a

Vietnam War veteran. If that was

not enough to keep him occupied,
Carmickle went on to attended
law school and culinary school.
Mr. Carmickle reminds young
people, the history you read
about, Ive lived through it.
Carmickle moved to the
Washington Park neighborhood in
2011. When asked what brought
him to Wisconsin he simply
states, My heart.
Carmickle moved to the
Washington Park neighborhood in
2011. When asked what brought
him to Wisconsin he simply
states, My heart.
Continued on page 2.

The Washington Park Beat

The Community

Golden Opportunity
By Kellymarie Stamper
The concept behind for Golden
Opportunity came from
examining both the already
existing homes in the Washington
Park area and the absences of
homes that once existed. I had
discovered from research that
the area has city codes that do
not allow for new development
to take place on empty lots. The
structures of condemned or
abandoned houses are either torn
town or left standing in hopes of
improvement to take place.

Charles Carmickle at a
November Washington
Park event
Photo by Riley Niemack

Despite living in the community for

a short time Carmickle is an active
community member he can be found
in local businesses, he participates in
several community groups, volunteers
with neighborhood children, organizes
community events, and is well known
not only on his block but throughout
the community.

My piece is meant to beg the

question of what happens when
we remove these structures and
how these existing structures
affect the space. This is also open
to the conception of what is public

and what is a private space. Is it

possible to utilize these spaces or
is it an intrusion on someone else?
Golden Opportunity
acknowledges spaces of potential
and beauty within the community.
Four doors were clad in gold
leaf. Three doors were the front
doors of currently condemned or
abandoned houses. One door was
a freestanding door on a vacant
lot as the entrance to a now nonexistent building. The gold leaf,
though fragile and temporary,
points to the value or treasure
these buildings may yet have.
I am reminding others of their

Upon moving to Milwaukee, he

thought many of the people had just
given up on life and the neighborhood
was unlike any other he had
previously lived in.
Prior to moving to Milwaukee he says
he had never in his life been robbed.
His home was burglarized and he had
two cars stolen from him within one
month. Despite this, he is well known
his block for inspiring his neighbors to
take care of their properties, helping
one another, building community,
and advocating for putting an end to
negative behaviors like selling drugs.
Full of wisdom and artistic voice,
Mr. Carmickle states, Its neighbors
that make neighborhoods. Other
than being a community liaison Mr.
Carmickle takes pride in being a chef,
beekeeper, poet, and the host of an
online streaming radio show through
Riverwest Public Radio titled Life.

The Washington Park Beat

Gold leaf door located at

1631-33 North 37th Street
Photo by Kellymarie

By Tessa Begay
Rosalind Cox takes pride in her
home. The faade of the twostory home does not reveal the
interesting characteristics of the
interior. The front entrance has
a wooden porch displaying the

Rosalind Coxs Washington

Park residence

a small hallway where jackets

rooms with windows looking out
to the street. The kitchen, a small
butler pantry, and dining area is in
the back of the home. Stairs in the
main living area lead on to three
bedrooms and one bathroom. The
has huge windows looking out to
the street. Rosalind decorates her
home to match the dark wood.
The house was built in 1900. The
architect was J. Leiser. The cost of
the building was $2,200.00. It has
been heavily renovated since its
construction. Although advertised
as a duplex when it was sold to
Rosalind in 2005, we found no
concrete evidence to support
that claim. The house features a
prominent central staircase that
leads from the living room to the

living room, sitting room, dining

room, kitchen, pantry, and small
entryway from a side door. The
bedrooms that are currently
space, a large master bedroom,
and a bathroom. There is a small
staircase leading to the attic,
which runs the length of the house
the front of the house.
The house has a full, mostly
subdivided into several smaller
rooms. At some point in time, a
bathroom was added and a room
in the southwest corner was

Mama Coxs House

installed, interior walls painted).
interior organization of the
house. The front bay is made of
the formal entrance and living
space, the middle bay is made
of the staircase while the back
bay contains kitchen and other
a sequential interior layout that
connects the front to the back of
the house.
The house had renovation work
done by Habitat for Humanity.
Most recently, a replacement
fence was constructed around
the side and back of the house.
At some point, vinyl siding was
installed, and few original wood
windows remain. Although
the interior walls and ceilings

indicating that it was originally

a door. On the exterior of
the building there is a corner
featuring original wooden trim
from what appears to have been a
porch or a staircase leading up to
The master bedroom runs the
entire width of the front of the
house, so it is very large. We did
not see evidence of any original
wall dividing it in half. A tile wall
and Jacuzzi bathtub were installed
in the northwest corner of the
master bedroom at some point.

the layout of the interior does

not appear to have changed
There is a window at the back

The Washington Park Beat

Washington Park Community Design:

Visualizing Opportunities

By Hillary Byrne
The goal of this project is to
provide opportunities for outdoors
activities for local youth in order
to increase levels of health and
well-being. These objectives will
be accomplished by redeveloping
and reprogramming vacant lots
along a common processional path
with physical activities spaces.
These spaces, designed to promote
movement, permeability, visual
identity, personalization, variety
and richness, have the potential
to increase physical and cognitive
activities, enhance positive
interpersonal interactions, intensify
neighborhood walkability and
augment safety and crime prevention.
In addition, these interventions
are designed to provide adaptable
activities during day and night and to
address changing seasonal uses.
For each project assigned
within the studio, I sought out a
community leader or a resident of
the neighborhood as a resource
and guide. To gain a greater
understanding of the neighborhood

before designing landscape

implementations, I met with youth
of the community at Our Next
Generation Inc. in order to discuss
their visions for the future of the
Washington Park Neighborhood,
This experience was eye-opening. It
was incredibly devastating to learn
the youth within the area were not
able to experience their outdoor
environment due to safety concerns.
Many of the students explained that
they rarely traveled alone and the
outdoor activities they preferred were
conducive to large group participation
such as, planned outdoor events or
I asked students to map their daily
route from either Westside Academy
I or Westside Academy II to Our
Next Generation and based on their
responses, I established a network
of outdoor venues that followed
the students common path of
travel. In developing the network
of landscaping initiatives, I found
it important to consider aspects of
safety when I designed spaces that
would promote and attract large
group activity use. I wanted to

design spaces that enhanced health

and well-being while also offering
opportunities to increase cognitive
Many of my suggestion are intended
to be adaptable over day and night
as well as seasonally. For example,
I propose that one of the vacant lots
on W. Lisbon Ave. could be turned
into a velodrome cycling park that
could be utilized throughout the day
and night by different age groups.
To increase adaptability between
seasonal changes, the velodrome
could be altered to hold a small
outdoor ice-skating rink during the
winter. Each activity space was
planned in such a way that it would
be visible from the adjacent activity
space producing a network or chain
of interrelated public spaces along a
common path. In doing so, I predict
that the number of people using the
outdoor environment may increase,
promoting safe pedestrian paths and
offering youth and adults the ability
to participate in multi-generational
outdoor activities.
The Washington Park Beat

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