vamos nomar

In January 2022, with generous support from the Wichita Foundation, Kounkuey Design Initiative (KDI) partnered with Empower to launch Vamos Nomar, a project to engage North End residents to revitalize the Nomar District.


A history of the Nomar District in Downtown Wichita
Located north of Downtown Wichita, the Nomar District is a historic hub for the Latino community. The three-acre district is primarily zoned as a commercial area with some residential areas sprinkled in between. The North End community is known for its strong cultural identity, vibrant and diverse, and the passionate stakeholders who are active and involved in bringing cultural events to their community.


Mural painting at the July Alley Activation
Over the course of a year, KDI and Empower worked with residents to understand community priorities and challenges, and develop a vision for a greener, safer, and more active Nomar District. To advance that vision, we activated and re-imagined three underused “catalyst sites” - Nomar Plaza, Woodland Park, and 21st Street, producing new short- and long-term strategies for design and programs that can transform these sites into thriving community spaces. This work builds on the many strengths of the North End community, as well as significant private investment from Empower, to revitalize the historic Nomar Theater and Basham building across the street from Nomar Plaza.


Long-term vision roadmap for the Vamos Nomar Plaza
The culmination of this project is a planning zine that shares findings from our engagement process, our neighborhood study and analysis, and strategies for transforming the catalyst sites. Ultimately, this plan can serve as a roadmap for key stakeholders to implement both short and long-term changes to address community priorities and strengthen the Nomar District as a community hub for many years to come. You can access the full zine here.


Residents participating in a workshop held at Nomar Plaza
The residents of the Nomar District are hungry for change and inspired by the renewed energy in their neighborhood. These activations demonstrated the potential for long and short term implementations that will live on long after KDI’s involvement. Building off the momentum from this project, our partner, Empower, is building a small business incubator in the old Nomar Theatre.