The Institute for Urban Design (IfUD) has organized New York City’s very first Urban Design Week. In mid September, IfUD will engage the city with a series of public events. Through lectures, tours, and a competition, IfUD hopes to analyze the city’s collective urbanity and imagine possibilities for the future.
IfUD hosted a two-phase competition this summer titled By the City / For the City to launch Urban Design Week. First, New Yorkers were encouraged to submit ideas across all five boroughs for improvements to the public realm. Using these hundreds of suggestions, an open competition was held for architects, designers, and artists to address these ideas with a proposal for change. The first official event of the week will be held Thursday September 15 to announce the competition winners and present “An Atlas of Possibility for the Future of New York”, a book created from the By the City / For the City submissions. A number of events from September 15th through the 20th are scheduled to invite understanding and discussion about the many layers comprising the urban city. All events are listed on the website urbandesignweek.org, and include a packed week of lectures, tours, workshops, parties, and films. Urban Design Week will culminate on Tuesday, September 20th with the United States premiere of the film Urbanized.Urbanized is the third film in a series by director Gary Hustwit, which also includes noted documentaries Helvetica, and Objectified. Urbanized focuses on the design of cities and examines urban design with contribution from “architects, planners, policymakers, builders, and thinkers.” IfUD was able to provide so many diverse events by partnering with many organizations and museums throughout the city actively involved in New York’s urban design. Through this varied group of partners, Urban Design Week will illustrate the many factors that contribute to New York’s current urbanity, and consider the many futures imagined by the designers, architects, and artists working to constantly improve their city.