HomeCommunity Development Workshop

Community Development Workshop


Community Development Workshop is the capstone course in the Community Development major offered at the Tyler School of Art and Architecture, Temple University.  The course is taught by Dr. Lynn Mandarano. The projects on this site were developed by students in collaboration with community partners as noted.


Eastern North Stories 

In spring 2022, the Community Development Workshop, in partnership with Asociación Puertorriqueños en Marcha (APM), developed a walking tour meant to highlight both iconic and historical locations in the neighborhood of Eastern North Philadelphia and engagement activities for a community event to kick-off the walking tour.

The project was titled Eastern North Stories and a walking tour was developed in the neighborhood based on archival research, interviews, and the 2021 and 2020 cohorts' previous work. The tour begins at Germantown Avenue and Berks Street near the former site of the Anshei Sholom Synagogue and ends at what now stands in its place: Cousin's Supermarket. The tour route follows Germantown Avenue, N 8th St, and Diamond St, highlighting properties and buildings of historical significance and present-day importance. The team developed Story Cards for each site for participants to read aloud the site's history and significance as well as to engage participants in discussion. 

The community engagement event to kick-off the walking tour was held on April 9, 2022. The team developed several engagement activities that focused on gauging residents' interests and preferences for future developments in the neighborhood as well as sharing their memories and experiences of Eastern North Philadelphia.

To learn more about the sites highlighted on the Eastern North Stories walk tour visit the page Eastern North Stories.

Click on the link below to view the video of the class project and highlights from the event and tour.

Video - Eastern North Stories



*Team Leaders


Explore Eastern North Walking Tours

In spring 2021, the Community Development Workshop continued in partnership with Asociación Puertorriqueños en Marcha's (APM)  and expanded scope of partnerships to include LISC Philadelphia and Cieba

Building off of previous cohorts, 2021 students worked across seven teams in developing an intersecting set of three walking tours and titled the project Explore Eastern North Walking Tours. 

Two additional historic walking tours were created for Lehigh Avenue and North 5th Street. Students rebranded the 2020 project, Discover Germantown Avenue Walking Tour and renamed it Explore Germantown Avenue for continuity with the project's overall design and partners’ initiatives.  

Through archival research and community interviews, students designated new historic sites to feature on each tour.  The team then developed corresponding tour maps, guide brochures, and site posters.  Additionally, the team built and rebranded websites for each tour.  The websites feature profiles for the historic sites along with supplementary neighborhood information.  

As community member-led tours and in-person events were postponed, the spring 2021 cohort designed tours to be self-guided and created a self-guided engagement activity for participants.   

Video - Eastern North Philadelphia Walking Tours

Visit the project overview page Explore Eastern North Walking Tours and each historic walking tour:



*Team Leaders


Discover Germantown Avenue

Discover Germantown Avenue (now Explore Germantown Avenue), connects neighbors to iconic historic places in the Eastern North neighborhood. Starting at Asociación Puertorriqueños en Marcha's (APM) 6th and Diamond office, the physical walking tour focuses on business and properties directly along Germantown Avenue. This website features profiles for each of the sites on the walking tour, with profiles for additional historical properties located throughout the neighborhood. The information collected here only scratches at the surface of the rich stories found in this neighborhood. It is our hope that this project helps explorers recall memories about this community, while also facilitating the creation of new memories.

A brochure was developed to help explorers navigate the walking tour. The brochure includes a tour map with property addresses. The QR code links explorers to a wealth of information on each property. Physical copies of the brochure can be found at APM's 6th and Diamond office.

Use the link in bold to learn more about this class project:  Explore Germantown Avenue

Bellow is a link to a short video introducing this walking tour.

Video - Germantown Avenue Walking Tour

The group organized into several project teams to coordinate the tour development. We would not have been able to complete this project without Dr. Mandarano's community expertise and ability to facilitate engagement with APM and community members. We also want to thank our correspondents at APM who facilitated project development by co-hosting a storytelling event and collaborating on the project event. In particular, Ilianna Dominguez-Franco, Victoria Cubillos-Canon, Misha Rodriguez, and Lamont Jefferson were incredibly helpful in creating the Discover Germantown Avenue Walking Tour. Finally, we would like to thank our sole participant in the storytelling event, Yolanda, who was able to share memories with us about four stops along the walking tour.

Thank you to our student team for contributing extensive hours of thought and work into the development of this project. Klesa Achaibar, Kristen Adamczyk, Gabrielle Gallante, Collin Holben, Miguel Jimenez, Olivia Lamborn, Maggie Loesch, Gabriella Manocchio, Olivia Molina, Rachel Murphy, and Bianca Panunto. 


Germantown Avenue: Remembering and Envisioning 

For the Spring 2019 Community Development Workshop course, students took on a public history research and engagement project. The goal of the project was to develop a community engagement strategy to raise residents’ awareness of the rich history of Germantown Avenue and to build capacity to collectively envision its future.

The team customized a research strategy that focused on Germantown Avenue’s commercial and cultural history. The research involved interviewing community leaders, conducting archival research on iconic businesses and buildings, and researching the history of individual parcels. 

The results of the research were later presented at an APM community event. There, students implemented engagement activities based on their research, with the goal of collecting data on past and current commercial assets in the neighborhood. During the event, residents were prompted to imagine the types of businesses they would most like to see arrive to the avenue in the case of future redevelopment.

Through these engagement activities, the Community Development Workshop team collected and analyzed data necessary to discover appropriate solutions that build on available, local assets, as well as the needs of the community. The information gathered for and presented to APM and their neighborhood aims to remedy the community’s issue of commercial vacancy and lack of services, by way of helping residents discover a language for expressing their needs to potential commercial developers. Results from the day of the event were analyzed and provided a starting line for future conversations between APM and area residents regarding potential redevelopment.

The 2019 Community Development Workshop team was able to see the importance of and gain first-hand experience working with, and for, an underserved community. Grassroots engagement is essential to informing community development and urban planning solutions that aim to build capacity in city neighborhoods, as the values and needs of a community are directly delivered.

Below is a link to the documentary video created by Grace Mass.

Video - Remembering and Envisioning Germantown Avenue

2019 Project Team