Basic CMYK



God designed us to dwell in community.  In other words, we’re called to live out an embodied existence with our neighbors–people living together in a shared physical place. The built environment – the way city sidewalks, streets, parks, and neighborhoods are designed and inhabited – contributes to the quality of our community life, for good or for bad. While Christian pastors and leaders are well equipped for tending to the spiritual, emotional, and social health of the community, there is often a gap in their toolkit for understanding how they can nurture community wellbeing through active placemaking. Because of this, many Christian pastors and leaders miss out on the joy and privilege of participating in the planning, design, and building of livable neighborhoods, towns, or cities that help nourish individuals and communities for generations.

This one-day workshop in Detroit is an opportunity for Christian pastors and leaders to gain some tools for understanding the built environment and the unique ways the church can answer her call to love her neighbors by stewarding the built environment. Participants will join the annual Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU, which will be in Detroit for the enitre week, June 8-11) for three morning sessions and one afternoon sesson to learn about principles of good design and great placemaking that encourages community interaction, and social and physical wellbeing. In the afternoon we’ll do a walking tour to experience and see first hand what we’re learning about.

In addition to the learning, this workshop will also be an opportunity to meet and talk with other local leaders and pastors about how these ideas might be fleshed out in local congregations and communities. We hope you’ll join us in the conversation!

 “But seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the Lord on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare.” Jeremiah 29:7


This video explains in part why CNU is hosting it’s 2016 annual congress in Detroit, and why Project fo Placemaking is very excited about going to this Rustbelt City on the rebound for this event.


  • – You’ll learn from expert practitioners principles of good urban design that foster community flourishing.
  • – You’ll participate in small group discussions facilitated by experts.
  • – You’ll take a guided walking tour through the local neighborhood so you can see and discuss the design principles that you’re learning about.
  • – Last, but not least, you’ll meet new friends and become a part of a local Christian community that proactively cares about the built environment.


Free, but donations are acceptd.  Please but bring a brown bag lunch (or we’ll help arrange for you to place a lunch order for delivery).  We’ll be talking, eating, and walking during lunch.


THE ONLINE REGISTRATION DEADLINE IS JUNE 6!  You can register on the day of the event, but we’re prefer you to register online so we can anticipate the number of people attending.


Location: Gem Theatre: 333 Madison St, Detroit, MI 48226.

Date: June 8, 2016

Start Time: 8:00 AM

End Time: 5:00 PM


8:00 AM: Introductions (Location: Gem Theatre: 333 Madison St, Detroit, MI 48226).

9:00 AM – 10:00 AM: Principles of New Urbanism

New urbanists measure success by aligning practical strategies with the principles most identified with places people love. Andres Duany, one of the founders of the movement, talks about the components of community, the failure of post-WWII planning to deliver them, and what new urbanists have learned about restoring relationships between planning, design, and great places.  Andres Duany | Principal, Duany Plater-Zyberk & Company

10:15 AM – 11:15 AM: Urbanism & Sustainability

Over 80 percent of Americans now live in cities or suburbs—getting our communities right has never been more important. Kaid Benfield, author of People Habitat: 25 Ways to Think About Greener, Healthier Cities, takes a more holistic, solution-based, example-oriented approach to planning our communities sustainably—ecological and socially. Kaid Benfield, Senior Counsel for Environmental Strategies, Placemakers

11:30 AM – 12:30 AM: Coding & Zoning

In New Urbanism, one-size-fits-all strategies are off the table. From the beginning, the movement has developed and implemented strategies that strengthen communities through choice and diversity. Learn how pioneering tools such as form-based codes and the SmartCode are employed to incrementally and intelligently plan cities and towns while honoring the complexities of human settlement.  Susan Henderson, Principal, PlaceMakers LLC

12:45 PM – 2:30 PM: Lunch & Walking Tour

2:45 PM – 3:45 PM: The Cash Flow of Urbanism

Cities are beginning to see the value of their urban form and analyzing the relationship between building design and tax production. In doing so, they are realizing the economic potency of their downtowns and Main Streets. Joe Minicozzi discusses using methods such as property value analyses, retail tax studies, and revenue forecasting to help local officials understand the economics of walkability and mixed-use for cities, counties, and regions. Joe Minicozzi, Principal, Urban3, LLC

4:00 PM – 5:00 PM (location TBD): Wrap-up Discussion


Casual with comfortable walking shoes for the walking tour.


Eventbrite - Project for Placemaking - Detroit