• Week 1

    Week 1

    The first week of the Summer Intern Program focused on inventory, analysis, and visioning for The Greater Third Ward area. The interns familiarized themselves with the character of each of the three Super Neighborhoods that exist within the 7,000-acre area, as well as the adjacent Museum District and Medical Center. In a short period of time, the students gained an understanding of the distinctive ethnic, religious, cultural, and professional elements that shape the community of The Third Ward, including both the University of Houston and Texas Southern University

  • Week 2

    Week 2

    During week two, Ailyn focused on developing relationships between Texas Southern University, the University of Houston, and the surrounding Third Ward community. Prior to beginning the design process, she noted that Highways 288 and I-45 cut off The Third Ward and universities from the surrounding Houston communities. She was also concerned that both universities are largely commuter schools, and, therefore, suffer from a lack of student activity. Finally, Ailyn felt that the general attitude of the students is that they feel unsafe outside of school.

  • Week 3

    Week 3

    Continuing the exploration and refinement of how to disintegrate the boundaries between the universities and community, Ailyn established a common ground that could become the heart of these two communities. Revisions based on stakeholders’ comments required moving the intervention onto Wheeler Street. Using the existing shape of Wheeler Street and lines of the site, a series of two dimensional fields were established that act as a catalyst for the design proposal. The composition of these fields identifies a pattern for the community and university that, along with stacked programmatic elements, create a space of high activity and

  • Week 4

    Week 4

    Water and people flows are the two main points in my site design. I developed the water edges and bridge for the two issues. For the bridge design, I used a single sheet of paper. Firstly, people’s flow could be vertical, I tore it vertical to separate biking and pedestrian lines. Secondly, the flow could be horizontal. I tore it to let people get close to the water while keep the biking line straight up.

Ailyn Mendoza


As a fourth year Landscape Architecture student at Florida International University, she has studied and lived in Genoa, Italy, where she became fascinated with the urban landscape and the powerful role it plays for the city. Back in Miami, she’s an active member of her campus through involvement in the student ASLA chapter, student coordinator of Gallery Nights and is currently keeping her fingers crossed for the National Olmsted Scholar Award. Professionally, her biggest goal is to not just be labeled a landscape architect but rather a designer – someone who works towards developing spaces that are informed by and sensitive to people, cultures and cities.