Charrette – A Process to Create a Vision for Our Neighborhood of the Future

On March 30, 2015 the Charlotte Community Association Board of Directors held a special open community meeting to learn about the community vision plan process. About 55 neighbors attended and heard a presentation by the Community Design Center of Rochester (CDCR).

The central theme of the discussion was to inform members of the Charlotte Community about a process to develop a long term vision for the neighborhood. The scope of the vision plan can be as narrow or as broad as the community decides. Ideally it will encompass the entire neighborhood of Charlotte.

The process begins with a brainstorming session called a “charrette “that takes place over a series of months. It brings together community members and design professionals to create collaborative solutions for cities, towns, and neighborhoods. It begins with a walk through the neighborhood to see what’s there now, followed by a series of workshops facilitated by design professionals to solicit input from all attendees to produce sketches of dream neighborhoods and landscapes. Then the CDCR creates a consolidated report, or Vision Plan, of all the ideas from the charrette. The report can include materials such as posters, brochures, etc. with maps, drawings, photos and written commentary. It covers land use, gateways, transportation and connections.

The Community Design Center of Rochester is a local non-profit agency that works with neighborhoods to create this vision. For more information about a Charrette and some local examples, visit their website at