Creative placemaking and placekeeping evaluation challenges from the practitioner perspective

An interview with Roy Chan

Authored by: Maria Rosario Jackson

The Routledge Handbook of Placemaking

Print publication date:  December  2020
Online publication date:  December  2020

Print ISBN: 9780367220518
eBook ISBN: 9780429270482
Adobe ISBN:


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Roy Chan, Community Planning Manager at Chinatown Community Development Center (CCDC) in San Francisco, discusses the origins and nuances of contemporary creative placemaking work and evaluation challenges. In conversation with Maria Rosario Jackson, Chan traces the roots of what we call creative placemaking and creative placekeeping practice at CCDC to important moments in Asian American history and civil rights activity. Reflecting on substantive work in the development of public spaces, transit-oriented development, the renovation and management of affordable housing, economic development efforts, and in the work of community organizing, from the perspective of a practitioner, Chan questions conventional community development evaluation practices and offers insights into more appropriate ways of gauging meaningful community change. He discusses the evolution of mindsets and methods for measuring community development progress within his own organization among CCDC colleagues and offers his thoughts about what will be necessary to shift the ways in which we conceive of comprehensive community development and related modes of assessment and evaluation.

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