MADISON – Whether in times of celebration or protest, Library Mall has long been a place where the community and university have come together to be heard. As the university considers redeveloping the area, campus planners are seeking input to make sure its future is inclusive and respectful of the shared experiences of all people.
“We want to make sure everyone has a voice in this so it feels like everyone’s space,” says Gary Brown, director of Campus Planning and Landscape Architecture.
A virtual community workshop will be held from 6:30 to 8 p.m. March 23. Details are here: https://uwmadison.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJUvc-6sqjMqHtIykhQubLi0Kpt5qtxwOo8M. Another will be scheduled for May.
Library Mall is positioned between Memorial Library, State Street Mall, the Wisconsin Historical Society and Langdon Street. The 2015 Campus Master Plan-Landscape Master Plan calls for a large and open public gathering space with new paving, landscape plantings, seating, lighting, storm water management, and passive recreation areas.
The study will define project goals based on stakeholder input, provide conceptual alternatives, and prepare cost estimates. The project would rely entirely on private funds; at this point, funding has not been allocated and the timeline has not been set.
The project’s public engagement process includes intentionally seeking feedback from historically underrepresented communities on campus and across the community. The project’s core team of community leaders as well as more than 30 stakeholder groups are also working to engage with the community.
“As a place of teaching and learning, understanding our shared history and the different worldviews held for this space and place is important to our present,” says UW-Madison Tribal Relations Director Aaron Bird Bear, who serves on the core planning team for the project. “This understanding honors, reflects, and allows us to integrate our past into the present and our future.”
“That’s why it’s essential that we hear different people’s voices about what’s important to them and how they envision the future of Library Mall,” adds UW-Madison Community Relations Director Brenda González, who also serves on the core planning team.
More information and other workshop dates will be announced on the project’s website at https://cpd.fpm.wisc.edu/projects/library-mall-redevelopment-project/. Feedback can also be given via email at [email protected] or by taking a survey here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/UWLibMall2021.