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Community Engagement

Shelf Life

Seeding the Next Epoch

Seed libraries can restart agriculture after disasters. But what of useless plants? Two artists save the spontaneous, weedy species that serve no purpose but their own.

 

BMW Guggenheim Lab: Confronting Comfort: Olatunbosun Obayomi

 

BMW Guggenheim Lab: Confronting Comfort: Charles Montgomery

 

BMW Guggenheim Lab: Confronting Comfort: Maria Nicanor

 

BMW Guggenheim Lab: Confronting Comfort: Omar Freilla

 

Schooled by the Community: Connecting Flushing Meadows Corona Park Part 3

 

Schooled by the Community: Connecting Flushing Meadows Corona Park Part 2

Studio Reports

Design and Advocacy in the South Bronx

Nandini Bagchee shares her students' work to forge an equal exchange with activists fighting for community space in the South Bronx, in a studio where designers became advocates and advocates became designers.

Chinatown Shop Talk

As Manhattan's Chinatown experiences rapid change, a historic porcelain store on Mott Street reinvents itself as a space for intergenerational dialogue and community activation. UO talks to Mei Lum and Diane Wong, the minds behind the W.O.W. Project, about what they've learned and where they're headed next.

In the Same Room Without Screaming

Can public art, oral history, and open dialogue help rebuild burned bridges between estranged community groups? Gabrielle Bendiner-Viani recounts her experience in the Lower East Side's Seward Park Urban Renewal Area (SPURA).

Bronx Farm Helps Refugees Put Down Roots

Two refugees, a longtime community member, and the International Rescue Committee's New Roots program manager tell us how a Bronx garden melds resettlement efforts, job training, and good ole' fashioned community building, served up with a side of bitter melon.

Schooled by the Community: Connecting Flushing Meadows Corona Park

Earlier this year, a group of community advisors in Queens attended a community design school to formulate proposals to reconnect Flushing Meadows Corona Park to the surrounding communities. We hear from Design Trust Fellows Sam Holleran and José Serrano-McClain and Community Advisors Esther Sánchez and Jason Chin-Fatt on how it all went down.

The Right to Budget

The week before New Yorkers hit the polls in the city's participatory budgeting process, journalist John Surico tracks its evolution from non-profit project to institutionalization within the Council Speaker’s office, learns of its achievements and frustrations, and contemplates the future of this exercise in direct democracy.

Melding Public and Private: The Partnerships Behind Your Neighborhood Plaza

Laura Hansen explains how the Neighborhood Plaza Partnership supports the local non-profits that operate the city’s newest plazas and asks how much we should, and can, rely on private support for maintaining our public realm.

Typecast: Towers in the Park

Cooperative City, Cooperative Community

Caitlin Blanchfield uncovers the nuances of Co-op City that make this unique development relevant to our broader understanding of social infrastructure, intergenerational continuity, community pride, and affordability.

What Is Zoning?

Christine Gaspar of the Center for Urban Pedagogy walks us through the core concepts of New York City’s zoning code and describes the strategies the organization employs to break down its complexity.

Disciplined Disrupters: Finding Solutions in Brownsville

Rasmia Kirmani-Frye and Nadine Maleh of Community Solutions discuss how investment in the capability and capacity of a local community can bring transformative change to a neighborhood from within.

Walking to the Water: Environmental Justice and Newark's Riverfront Park

Damon Rich shares how the design and programming of Newark's Riverfront Park honors decades of local struggles around equity and identity.

Toward a Stronger Social Infrastructure: A Conversation with Eric Klinenberg

Eric Klinenberg explains the complexities and importance of neighborhood networks and community spaces and discusses the opportunities they present to designers and urbanists.

Paths to Pier 42

Hester Street Collaborative's Anne Frederick and Dylan House discuss a temporary pop-up public space on the Lower East Side that creates an asset for the neighborhood while informing and building momentum for the design of a future permanent park.