• Citizens' Institute on Rural Design (CIRD) Program Information Call

    On January 23, CommunityMatters hosted a Program Information Call for CIRD. Jamie Hand from the National Endowment for the Arts and Cynthia Nikitin from Project for Public Spaces provided an overview of the CIRD program and answered questions related to the recently released RFP. 

  • Welcome to the new Citizens' Institute on Rural Design!

    We are very excited to re-launch this program, as it represents a unique opportunity for both of our agencies to provide essential design services to rural communities.  Through our new partnership with Project for Public Spaces, Inc., the Orton Family Foundation, and the CommunityMatters® Partnership, rural communities can build upon existing assets and improve the way their community looks, its quality of life, and its economic viability.

  • CIRD Spotlight: Driggs, Idaho

    Driggs Master Plan Drawing

    With funding from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Federal Highway Administration, the Federal Transportation Authority, and the Driggs Urban Renewal Agency, the City of Driggs Idaho (pop. 1,660) plans to transform over 13,000 square feet of public space in its city center into an historic arts, visitor, recreation and transit center. 

  • Good Design Matters

    Travel teaches you many things, not the least of which is that the world doesn’t have to be ugly. 

    I first learned this lesson while serving in the U.S. Army in Germany during the 1970s.  Heidelberg, where I lived, was clean, compact, and dripping with history.  The town center was packed with shops and sidewalk cafes.  Missing were cars, which you really didn’t need because you could walk from one end of town to the other in about 20 minutes.