RESILIENT MONROE GREEN MAP INITIATIVE
Kelly Salchow MacArthur, College of Arts and Letters
River Raisin Institute
In 2016 MSU associate professor of graphic design Kelly Salchow MacArthur and the River Raisin Institute (RRI) of Monroe, Michigan, began a partnership that presented new opportunities for the RRI—the small nonprofit previously had no funds to work with a graphic designer—and led to an open exploration of the community’s specific needs and how to address them in an inclusive and engaging way.
Informed by local food accessibility data collected by the Monroe County Health Department, the Resilient Monroe Green Map Initiative developed an extensive map system to introduce green mapping—the practice of locating and plotting green living, natural, and cultural resources in an area—to the community by focusing on fresh, local food resources. The mapping system was launched on Earth Day 2018, and has since been distributed through schools and organizations, teaching residents about green mapping and inspiring the next generation of environmental stewards. Large interactive community maps were displayed at three libraries over the summer of 2018—in Monroe Township, Frenchtown Township, and the City of Monroe—which extend the range of the area that is being mapped and invite the public to plot their findings. To date, more than 2,000 community members have been reached.