by Loc Tran
Roosevelt High School is the largest school in Seattle and has one of the strongest academic programs in Washington. However, like all schools set urban contexts, the surrounding neighborhood has decayed over time. This once-thriving area must now contend with a rising rate of drugs, crime, and violence. All is not lost, though. There are large and small-scale efforts for urban renewal and while there the progress of a full community revival is slow, the residents and the local merchants are doing what they can in order to take keep the neighborhood’s identity alive and well. From shop windows to wall murals, every move taken by these locals is an attempt to carve out their niche in the space in order to improve the experience of the region. Though some are quite explicit, many of these things have become so commonplace that they are subtle gestures to the passerby. Nonetheless, they impact the students, the residents, and the thousands of drivers and pedestrians that pass through every day in their own ways.