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College of Environment and Design

Design Charrettes

What is a Charrette?

“Charrette” describes a rapid, intensive, and creative work session, usually lasting several days, in which a design team focuses on a particular design problem and arrives at a collaborative solution. Charrettes are product-oriented. The public charrette is fast becoming a preferred way to face the planning challenges confronting American cities. The Center for Community Design & Preservation (CCDP) conducts multiple community design charrettes a year through an innovative service-learning course.  The CCDP has conducted over 80 design charrettes since 1997.

Charrette Participation

Charrettes can be worth course credit in HIPR 4680/6680-S: Community Design Charrettes: An Innovative Course in Community Planning. This course is worth three credit-hours.  To register for this service-learning course, contact Donna Gabriel  at 542-4720 for access to register, rather than going through Athena.

Current Charrettes |Charrette Reports | Archive  

For students: Syllabus HIPR 6680-4680-S | FAQs about charrettes

Featured Charrettes

Winterville SketchWinterville charrette | Winterville GA | Feb 24-26, 2017
Only six miles from Downtown Athens, Winterville is ready to strike a balance between being attractive to young families, retirees and artists as well as encouraging businesses that could thrive in a historic, small town atmosphere. The City wants to take the lead in improving the appearance of government property, promoting pedestrian and bicycle connectivity (especially around the planned Firefly Trail), and encouraging new development to follow design construction standards. The charrette results include a true gathering place in the town center, improvements for highway commercial architecture, and walking and biking connections throughout town.
Facebook album | Posters


See Sumter LogoWayfinding charrette | Sumter County GA | March 18-20, 2016
The Sumter County Archway Partnership/One Sumter Foundation engaged CED to develop a wayfinding system and concepts for a shared graphic identity for Sumter County, including Americus, Plains, Andersonville, Leslie and Lake Blackshear. The result includes a transect analysis of primary corridors, a coordinated graphic identity for major destinations, wayfinding standards for rural and urban areas, and suggestions for enhancing the visitor experience.  Facebook album


Camp Hooray drawingCamp Hooray charrette | Jefferson GA | January 29-31, 2016
The University of Georgia’s College of Environment and Design and Georgia Tech’s College of Architecture partnered with Extra Special People, Inc. to design Camp Hooray, the first-of-its-kind, fully accessible overnight camp for children and young adults with developmental disabilities. The semester began with a charrette and continued with concurrent studios during Spring semester.
Facebook Album | Article


Boggs Rural Life CenterBoggs Rural Life Center Charrette | Keysville (Burke Co.) GA | April 2015
The Boggs Rural Life Center (BRLC) occupies the campus of the historic Boggs Academy, which operated from 1906 – 1984 as a boarding school for African-Americans. The charrette was a collaboration with Boggs Academy alumni and local advocates in a celebration of the school and the development of rehabilitation strategies using the campus as a rural retreat for teaching, learning and community service.
Final Report | Facebook album | “Saving Historic Boggs Academy” article


Blackwell Memorial High SchoolBlackwell Memorial High School Charrette | Elberton GA | March 2015
The Granite City Life Skills Foundation is interested in redeveloping the Blackwell Memorial High School property into an after-school program. The goals of the charrette were to document and celebrate the history of the Blackwell School, make phased recommendations for the rehabilitation of the buildings and the design of the 6 acre landscape, and conceptualize improvements for the surrounding neighborhood.
Final Posters


Bishop Park Master PlanBishop Park Master Plan Charrette | Athens GA | October 2014
At the request of Athens-Clarke County (ACC) Leisure Service staff, CCDP coordinated facilitating community input and a subsequent charrette to determine what is popular about Bishop Park and what amenities should be eliminated or introduced.
Facebook album | ACC Park Planning Website



CHaRMCHaRM – Center for Hard to Recycle Materials | Athens GA | February 2014
The CHARM site is envisioned as a convenient location for the recycling of non-curbside pick-up items, but also as an opportunity to educate the public and enhance a gateway location into Athens.
Final Report | Facebook album |ACC CHaRM Website


Fairmont Rosenwald School and CommunityFairmont Rosenwald School and Community | Griffin GA | October 2013
The city of Griffin is initiating improvements to this low-income, historically African-American neighborhood, which includes a historic Rosenwald School building and the Fairmont Homes public housing apartments.
Facebook album | Final Report



Southern MillSouthern Mill Charrette | Athens GA | February 2012
CCDP partnered with the Athens-Clarke Heritage Foundation (ACHF) on a conceptual design plan and marketing effort for a historic textile mill.  Solutions included a mixed-use approach to incorporate light industrial, affordable housing, and an artist community.  CCDP developed a comprehensive website about the historic Southern Manufacturing Company property and comparable redevelopment projects to assist in redevelopment efforts for the mill.  Southern Mill Website


Can We Get a Charrette?

Interested in bringing a charrette to your community?
Contact Jennifer Lewis, Outreach Coordinator at or 706-369-5885

We asked our communities, “What has been done locally since your charrette?”
•     “The county has acquired a $100,000 land and water grant and they are working on implementing some of the trails on the plan…The team that worked with us was very professional and extremely energetic! They brought fresh ideas to the table, but, more importantly, they listened to the community.” — Carrollton, GA, charrette conducted 2003

•     “We passed a Green Building Resolution requiring all municipal buildings and renovations to strive for LEED Silver certification.  We’re working with the River Basin Center and DNR to develop a model buffer ordinance for the coast.  We’ve begun a rain barrel program.  The first condos with a green roof are under construction in the beach business district.  We received a $2,000,000 GEFA loan for water line replacement.” —City of Tybee Island, charrette conducted 2005

•     “[We created] a mixed-use development (called “Town Center”) on major corner in City and in the downtown district [which] compliments historic district; Increased civic space (in Town Center) – creation of a 10 acre urban style park …total cost of park = $5,000,000+.  Design guidelines created [3 sets: 1 for the downtown district, 1 for the historic district, and 1 for Town Center area] in line with the UGA recommendations. City continues to encourage development along Buford Hwy. as described in the Charrette document. Lots and lots of cool stuff happening in Suwanee – much of it was spurred by the ideas that came out of the charrette.“ —City of Suwanee, charrette completed 2000