This past week, the annual Blind Design Workshop, established by Dr. Andrew Gipe-Lazarou, took place in Cowgill Hall. The immersive five-day workshop, organized in collaboration with the Department for the Blind and Visually Impaired (DBVI), hosted 12 students with visual impairments from across Virginia. These students were challenged with designing a blind-accessible urban streetscape.

Throughout the workshop, participants engaged in activities organized by student mentors. These activities explored non-visual means of the design process, including tactile precedent and facade studies, clay modeling, and 3D printing. Additionally, they enjoyed tours around campus and gained insights from renowned blind architect Chris Downey. At the conclusion of the workshop, participants presented their final models to the group and were given the opportunity to interact with and discuss their peers’ work.”