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October 4, 2017
by Justin Pascone
Kate Slevin (left), Saskia Sassen, Ethan Kent, Vishaan Chakrabarti, AIA, at Public Spaces, Social Movements. Credit: Center for Architecture

On 09.29.17, AIANY, ASLA-NY and APA-NYM hosted their 5th annual conference at the Center for Architecture. This year’s theme, “Public Spaces, Social Movements” focused on the recent rise of civic demonstrations in NYC and explored how planning and design can shape our public discourse. The annual conference is the premier occasion for members of the local chapters representing architects, landscape architects. and planners to come together to explore ideas for the future.

“Public Spaces, Social Movements” provided a fitting backdrop for discussing how designers, planners, grassroots organizers, policymakers, community advocates, and police are working hand-in-hand with local residents to reimagine our civic commons. Over 100 attendees took part in the full day of engaging presentations, dynamic speakers, and interactive discussions both at the Center and on social media using #PublicSpaces.

Highlights include a keynote address from New Yorkers for Parks’ Lucy Robson who presented the recent results from their Civic Action Tracker.

Panel talk of advocacy organizations with moderator Martin Zogran, Annel Hernandez from Resiliency the Environmental Justice Alliance, Adriana Espinoza from the New York League of Conservation Voters, and Pati Rodriguez from Mi Casa No Es Su Casa.

An in-depth discussion with Kate Slevin; Vishaan Chakrabarti, AIA; Saskia Sassen; and Ethan Kent.

Interdisciplinary ‘town-hall’ with AIANY’s Benjamin Prosky, Assoc. AIA; ALSA-NY’s Signe Nielsen, FAIA; and APA-NYM’s Michael Levine.

Big thanks to everyone that attended and participated! Videos from the conference to follow.

Pulse Points

  • AIANY has released our latest in a series of federal policy statements on Risk and Recovery. The statement addresses the recent changes in policy and regulations at the federal level and their impact here in New York, such as withdrawing the United States from the Paris Climate Accords, suspending safeguards at the Environmental Protection Agency, and rescinding of water and air pollution regulations. To read the full statement, continue here.
  • On 09.27.17, AIANY met with New York State Senator Marisol Alcantara’s office to discuss AIA’s position on the Due Process for Design Professionals bill (S.4328/A.4363). AIANY and other chapters are continuing outreach in support of this bill, which would return authority to investigate, prosecute and levy punishment from design profession to the State Education Department.
  • On 09.27.17, the NYC Council passed a series of bills including those that will establish construction safety training requirements and programming (Int 1447-2017), enhancing NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) practices related to 421-a and affordable housing development (Int 1366-2016), creating a Real Time Enforcement Unit (RTEU) in the Department of Buildings (Int 0934-2015) and on streamlining electronic receipt of City procurement vouchers (Int 1292-2016).
  • On 09.14.17, Mayor de Blasio announced a first-of-its-kind initiative to mandate new greenhouse gas emission requirements for the city’s largest buildings. AIANY, the Urban Green Council, THE Real Estate Board of New York, and 32BJ SEIU have previously released the 2017 Green Building Roadmap which recommends critical green-energy policy for New York City.
  • Registration is open for the Hyper-Efficient Building Workshops, AIANY and Urban Green Council’s in-depth training on the design of hyper-efficient buildings and compliance with Local Law 31/32. The two-day workshops are limited to 25 participants and open to all architects, designers, engineers, and construction trade professionals. The next workshops are being held on 11.07.17 – 11.08.17 and 11.28.17 – 11.29.17 at the Center for Architecture. To learn more and register, continue here.

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