Dix Park - City of Raleigh

Arts and Culture

Developing a cultural interpretation plan for an emerging, 308-acre public park.

One of the largest new parks in the country, Dix Park is an emerging 308-acre public space in the heart of Raleigh with a complex history involving Native land, plantation slavery, and the state psychiatric hospital. Brocade and a partner experience design firm developed a cultural interpretation plan focused on sharing the site’s history with visitors and connecting the past to what Raleighites find meaningful today. This significant project involved extensive research and engagement.

Through conversations with community members, park staff and stakeholders, five overarching goals for emerged for the plan: bring relevance and meaning to the site by making connections to issues Raleighites face today; increase appreciation and understanding of the natural resources of the park and how to protect them; tell the unfolding history of the site, with special care for stories that have been buried or forgotten; cultivate curiosity, dialogue, and empathy; and challenge visitors to think in new ways about history.

“The Brocade team facilitated a process and created an environment that was not only welcoming and inclusive, but repaired relationships with community members who had previously felt their voices were unheard.”

— Kate Pearce, Executive Director

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