July 10, 2019
by: AIA New York
Image: NYC Public Design Commission.
Image: NYC Public Design Commission.

With the backing of an AIA New York Committee Excellence Grant and the AIANY Housing Committee, the NYC Public Design Commission (PDC) has launched a database arm of the Designing New York: Quality Affordable Housing initiative. The new database provides a platform to advance the national and global dialogue around affordable housing design and makes PDC’s research fully accessible to both the general public and professionals in housing and development.

“The case studies included in this research effort illustrate a diversity of creative design approaches to challenging sites, tight budgets, and ambitious programs, demonstrating how design principles and best practices can be applied globally to raise the bar on affordable housing and the design of our public realm,” says Rebecca Macklis, Senior Urban Design Manager, NYC Public Design Commission.

The database can be accessed on your desktop browser or mobile device via the PDC website.

“This database highlights projects—across five continents and counting—that enrich and enliven the public realm,” says Jeff Byles, President, The Fine Arts Federation of New York, a partner in the Designing New York initiative. “These examples show how affordable housing can help communities everywhere create new social spaces, boost public health, and build resilience through innovative design,” adds Byles.

The database underscores the importance of design excellence in the housing dialogue, and was developed in connection with the report Designing New York: Quality Affordable Housing, which launched with an event at the Center for Architecture in 2018. The report is a collaboration between AIANY’s Housing Committee, PD,  and the Fine Arts Federation of New York. Using a series of guiding principles, it contains case studies of New York City buildings completed over the last 20 years. PDC intends to use these principles during its reviews of affordable housing throughout the city.


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