The Lincoln Avenue Community of New Rochelle is the focus of a Harvard GSD studio taught by Gina Ford and Rhiannon Sinclair. This week, the Cultural Landscape Foundation (TCLF) recognized the neighborhood as an important, yet threatened landscape as part of its “Landslide 2021: Race and Space”.
Known as the Harlem of Westchester, the Lincoln Avenue community of New Rochelle developed around 1900 during the Great Migration. The center of the community was the Lincoln Elementary School, which was demolished in 1963 following the 1961 Federal Appeals Court ruling on the Lincoln School Desegregation Case. The six-lane Memorial Highway was subsequently constructed, which physically divided the community. The immediate threat is a state-funded Downtown Revitalization Initiative proposal prompted in part by aggressive redevelopment plans.
Landslide 2021: Race and Space focuses on thirteen relatively unknown, but nationally significant cultural landscapes associated with African Americans, Hispanic Americans and Native peoples. The exhibition and report feature an introduction, throughlines that delineate common characteristics associated with the sites, an illustrated history of each site with contemporary and newly commissioned photography, the threats posed, and Landslide Conversations comprised of eighteen richly illustrated short video interviews – one about each site and five about with people associated with the sites and other commentators. “Landslide 2021 broadens our understanding of our nation’s complex history by raising the visibility of its overlooked cultural landscapes,” said Charles A. Birnbaum, TCLF’s president and CEO.
To see the online exhibit and learn more about the Lincoln Avenue Community in New Rochelle, NY, visit tclf.org.
Image credit: Tomas Ovalle