The University of Utah
College of Architecture + Planning

Westside Studio

The Westside Studio, in the College of Architecture + Planning at the University of Utah, conducts research in and with the neighborhoods west of State Street in Salt Lake City. Each year the Studio selects projects related to community development, urban design, economic development, green infrastructure, and/or arts & culture. The Studio emphasizes the involvement of a wide range of stakeholders from governmental agencies to neighborhood groups and individuals.


River District Gardens
900 South and 900 West offers a sense of place where people gather for recreation and enjoy the quality of the natural environment, as well as the character and values of the West Side.


Re-Imagining Jordan Park
The Westside Studio class, in collaboration with community members, University Neighborhood Partners, the Sorenson
Unity Center and citizens involved in the Poplar Grove Community Council, has identified Jordan Park as an underutilized
facility. Because there is interest in revitalizing the park, an analysis of its benefits and hindrances are summarized in the following report. Key priorities have been identified, including refurbishing/repurposing buildings, providing lighting, improving infrastructure, and creating more community involvement opportunities.

A cookbook for building community identity in the river district.


2013: Westside Studio: River District
The River District is a great place to live, work, and visit! Close to downtown Salt Lake City, the River District offers something for everyone and embodies a unique vibrancy within a community of culturally diverse and passionate people. The River District is energized by authentic music, creative art, savory food, family-friendly festivals, and a thriving local business community.

2012: Westside Studio: River District
The River District is an idea inspired by west Salt Lake City’s unique but often overlooked and forgotten asset– the gentle Jordan River which peacefully weaves and flows through this side of the city. In the interest of diminishing and eventually erasing the negative stigma that often plagues the “West Side,” the River District brand and logo can highlight the positive assets and values intrinsic to the river itself– and more importantly, the community surrounding its walls.


2011: Westside Greenways: North
The Westside Greenways North study area includes a 5-mile stretch of the Jordan River. The Jordan River is on the Northeastern side of the Salt Lake Valley, and flows from Utah Lake to the Great Salt Lake.

The Westside Studio brings together the College of Architecture + Planning at the University of Utah with University Neighborhood Partners, NeighborWorks, the City of Salt Lake, local residents, and other stakeholders to identify assets in Westside neighborhoods, develop proposals for building upon these assets, and work towards implementing the proposals through collaborative envisioning, advocating, and demonstrating with the goal of enhancing the vitality and vibrancy of Westside communities. Current studio work includes developing a greenway network that strengthens the relationship of the river and the city and ties destinations meaningfully together.


2011: Westside Greenways: Jordan River Community Connections
Working in partnership with community organizations and Westside residents in particular, the Studio created a future framework for the neighborhoods surrounding the Jordan River in Salt Lake City. These recommendations aim to strengthen greenway connections between residential centers, commercial centers, and the Jordan River. The studio capitalized on neighborhood assets to create a vision for a vibrant community.
For pictures from this studio’s final presentation, click here.

2009: Neighborhood House Garden Project
The Neighborhood House teamed up with the Department of City + Metropolitan Planning in an effort to revitalize unused property owned by the Neighborhood House. The goal of the garden project was to create healthy social and environmental connections. These connections facilitate a productive and interactive space for the Neighborhood House clients as well as the surrounding community. The resulting design plans included flower and vegetable gardens, outdoor pottery studios, fruit trees, riparian areas, outdoor classrooms, and a mosaic of community art installations.

2006: Jackson Neighborhood Plan and Youthworks Workshop
Salt Lake Neighborhood Housing Services asked the Westside Studio to develop a master plan for the Jackson Neighborhood and produce a design for a Youth Works Workshop in the Guadalupe Neighborhood. The Studio conducted a Design Workshop focusing on the direction of the Jackson Neighborhood and the needs of the Youth Works Workshop in cooperation with other students representing other West Side community groups. Utilizing the information collected during the community Design Workshop, the Westside Studio students developed designs for a Jackson Neighborhood Master Plan and the Architectural Design for the Youth Works Workshop working in consultation with NHS and University of Utah faculty.