Niles Pioneer Landing

Sabrina Wu

David Watts

March 2021

Niles was home to pioneers during the Transcontinental Railroad and the Silent Film Era (early Hollywood). This town’s remarkable history has been severely underrepresented under Fremont’s turn to modern civilization and is in danger from encroaching urban development.

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Located in the Alameda County, Fremont is home to diverse communities varying from suburbia, industrial/innovation districts, and picturesque landscapes. It consists of 28 neighborhoods and surrounds a smaller city called Newark.

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Transitioning from the Traveler’s Trail, one will find themself entering the city life where dining, shopping, seasonal events, sociability, and fun happens.

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Niles was home to pioneers during the Transcontinental Railroad and the Silent Film Era (early Hollywood). This town’s remarkable history has been severely underrepresented under Fremont’s turn to modern civilization and is in danger from encroaching urban development.

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Located in the Niles neighborhood of Fremont, CA rests a quaint, little Main Street full of historical character and landmarks. The community is home to a historic rail station and the first West Coast motion picture company, Essanay Studios. Within this studio, popular silent film stars such as Charlie Chaplin and Broncho Billy Anderson filmed some of their most famous movies. However, over the years, the Niles community has faced multiple threats in altering its unique character into a modernized look. With this project, Niles Pioneer Landing is a living history Main Street that will honor its roots as the home of pioneers in motion. The project will utilize the current Niles guidelines, narrative landscapes, environmental storytelling, and the placemaking framework in the design process. The site is transformed into a pedestrian-only experience that mirror the simpler times and inspire the next generation of creative visionaries. It will also bring a new meaning to the area as a beacon of hope that greatness can come from anywhere no matter how big or small.

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ABOUT ME

My name is Sabrina Wu and I am from Fremont, CA. I enjoy drawing, painting, creating DIY projects, interior design, theme parks, watching movies, and playing on my Nintendo Switch. Throughout my college career, I have come to learn and love narrative landscapes and its meaningful benefits for people. The idea of telling stories with the landscape is what makes a place one of a kind and why I decided to do my senior project about it. After graduating, I hope to continue my education in thematic design and pursue a career as an Experience Designer