This is South Fairmount, documented by Numediacy from October 2014 - March 2015. We believe 20 buildings had already been demolished at this point. We photographed the remaining buildings, most scheduled to be 'deconstructed' in the next year, which you can see through the architecture link above. The interactive map and photo galleries were originally displayed on a large, vertically oriented screen. The video is a sampling of the community. It was originally displayed from two, side by side projectors.
In fall of 2014, Numediacy was commissioned by the Weston Art Gallery to create a documentary about the Lick Run Project happening in South Fairmount, Cincinnati. It was featured in the 2015 exhibition, Too Shallow For Diving (2S4D): the weight of water. Using video, sound, photography, html & java, and found objects from South Fairmount, Numediacy created a multimedia, documentary installation entitled: Lick Run Revival.
You probably won't find the Lick Run on your map. That's because it's been buried in a 20ft pipe, under South Fairmount, for 100 years. Now under a federal mandate, Cincinnati is required to reduce the amount of raw sewage being dumped into our waterways by billions of gallons. To do it, the decision was made to sacrifice 77 buildings in the South Fairmount. Some of the buildings being demolished are candidates for the National Historic Register, some were occupied homes, others were successful businesses. In it's own way, each building was a part of the South Fairmount community. In their place, the mile long waterway park and the 'daylighted' Lick Run will reduce the amount of raw sewage being dumped in to our waterways and the community can learn from and enjoy a new park.
We began digging up some history of South Fairmount in the Cincinnati Library and the Union Terminal Archives. We were struck by how few historical images there were of the German and Italian neighborhood. At that point we decided our project should be to create good visual and audial documentation of the South Fairmount valley community before it is completely demolished and changed, for people of now and the future. We decided that after the Weston exhibition, we would put the digital media online, for free, for everyone.
A brief history of the Lick Run:
At the end of the 1700s, white settlers were moving into the Macatawa creek valley; renamed the Mill Creek to entice immigrants, the Miami indians were being driven out by militia and military raids out of Northern Kentucky. Cincinnati became a boomtown, and like many other cities, it's waterways quickly became very polluted from mills, breweries, and homes. So polluted in fact they became public health hazards and as a result the Lick Run, the final tributary of the Mill Creek before pouring into the Ohio River, was encapsulated in the pipe. It was designed as a combined sewer, meaning clean rain water was used to flush the sewers out.
For a fascinating read about the history of Cincinnati, and how we are here, please read:
The Mill Creek: An Unnatural History of an Urban Stream, by Stanley Hedeen.