Design is everywhere.
It has become clear that the events of 2020 will have deep and lasting consequences for every aspect of society including the physical environments we inhabit—our homes, our neighborhoods, and our cities. What can we learn from previous experience that can be applied to current challenges and future efforts in Boston and other cities and towns in America?
In 2021 the Rudy Bruner Award partnered with the Northeastern University School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs and the Kitty and Michael Dukakis Center for Urban and Regional Policy Open Classroom to curate and host Inspiring Design: Creating Beautiful, Just, and Resilient Places in America to explorehow people and cities across the United States are tackling tough challenges. The 14-week virtual lecture series went “on the road” with leading voices in architecture and urban design, planning and development, education and community engagement, and public policy and civic leadership to visit, discuss, and learn from award-winning places and people engaged in innovative urban design.
Each 75- to 90-minute session includes a brief introduction and 30 to 40 minutes of presentation(s) followed by a moderated discussion with the audience. The sessions listed below include links to the recordings along with detailed session descriptions and learning objectives, speaker bios, and related resources including RBA case studies and other initiatives and projects highlighted by the speakers. Additional information, including highlights from each session and the series as a whole, can be found in these Metropolis Magazine articles.
ASLA and AICP continuing education credits are available thanks to partnerships with Boston Society of Landscape Architects and the American Planning Association, Ohio Chapter. Follow the links to access to the LA CES quiz and to view the AICP CM session recordings for credit.
The Inspiring Design: Creating Beautiful, Just, and Resilient Places in America series was hosted in partnership with the Northeastern University School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs and the Kitty and Michael Dukakis Center for Urban and Regional Policy as a part of its 2021 Spring Myra Kraft Open Classroom. It was presented in partnership with the Association of Architecture Organizations, Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture, Boston Society for Architecture, and Boston Society of Landscape Architects.
EQUITY AND THE CITY—January 20, 2021
The City of Boston’s first Chief of Equity and author of People Before Highways: Boston Activists, Urban Planners, and a New Movement for City Making, which highlights the story of Southwest Corridor Project (1989 RBA Silver Medalist) and its lasting impact on geographic and political change, discusses strategies for embedding equity into urban development and planning.
BUILDING COMMUNITY WITH FOOD—January 27, 2021
Larry Kearns, architect of Inspiration Kitchens—Garfield Park (2013 RBA Gold Medalist) in Chicago, and Brenda Palms Barber discuss food-focused initiatives on the City’s West Side including a proposal to create the first Food Innovation District.
REIMAGINING SCHOOL—February 3rd, 2021
Todd Richardson, co-developer of Crosstown Concourse in Memphis (2019 RBA Gold Medalist), and Ginger Spickler share how the inclusion of an innovative public charter high school (part of the national XQ Super School network) promotes real-world collaboration, exchange, learning and community-building and Ron Bogle offers insight from the Reimagine America’s Schools initiative.
ENGAGING AND EMPOWERING THE NEXT GENERATION—February 10th, 2021
Ann Yoachim and Jullian Wellisz share how the Small Center’s collaborative design process helped Transitional Spaces, a volunteer-based group of young skaters, design and build Parisite Skatepark in New Orleans (2019 RBA Silver Medalist) and YouthBuild Boston’s Michael Chavez discusses the impact of engaging local youth, emerging designers, and communities.
ADVANCING HOUSING FOR HEALTH AND WELLBEING—February 17th, 2021
Urbanist Karen Kubey, architect Brian Phillips, and Housing Innovation Design Fellow Wandy Pascoal discuss how collaborative partnerships between architects, for-profit and nonprofit organizations, the public sector, and communities are advancing the design of healthy and sustainable affordable housing like Via Verde—the Green Way (2013 RBA Silver Medalist) in Bronx, New York.
STRENGTHENING CITIES THROUGH UNIVERSITY PARTNERSHIPS—February 24th, 2021
Drexel University’s Jason Schupach and Arizona State University’s Maria Rosario Jackson discuss the roles of creative placemaking and public private partnerships in shaping development in Philadelphia and Phoenix including the creation of Civic Space Park (2011 RBA Silver Medalist) and Northeastern University’s Kathy Spiegelman offers insights on Boston.
INVESTING IN INFRASTRUCTURE—March 3rd, 2021
Greenville, South Carolina Mayor Knox White and Southernside Neighborhood in Action’s Mary Duckett discuss how the development of Falls Park on the Reedy (2015 RBA Silver Medalist) prompted dialogue about green infrastructure and equity, and Northeastern University’s Dan Adams and the Emerald Necklace Conservancy’s Karen Mauney-Brodeck reflect on the value of public infrastructure in cities.
FOSTERING INNOVATIVE CIVIC LEADERSHIP—March 10th, 2021
Architect Alice Kimm, AECOM’s Kelli Bernard, and USGBC-LA’s Ben Stapleton discuss the role of La Kretz Innovation Campus + Arts District Park (2017 RBA Silver Medalist), a clean tech incubator and demonstration facility, in positioning Los Angeles as a sustainable city.
CREATING INCLUSIVE AND RESILIENT PUBLIC PLACES—March 17th, 2021
Mikyoung Kim Design’s Mikyoung Kim, Klopfer Martin Design Group’s Kaki Martin, and the Van Alen Institute’s Deborah Marton draw upon their experiences leading projects and initiatives that shape the public realm in cities including The Steel Yard in Providence (2013 RBA Silver Medalist).
ENDING HOMELESSNESS—Mach 24th, 2021
Architects John Friedman and Myriam Camargo and housing advocate Roseanne Haggerty discuss solutions to ending homelessness, sharing examples of initiatives and projects including The Times Square (1997 RBA Gold Medalist) in New York City and The Bridge Homeless Assistance Center (2011 RBA Gold Medalist) in Dallas and Northeastern University student Bridge Conway reflects on her experience working with homeless veterans in Boston.
CULTIVATING DIALOGUE ABOUT URBAN DEVELOPMENT—March 31st, 2021
Boston Globe columnist Renee Loth moderates a conversation with Philadelphia Inquirer Architecture Critic Inga Saffron, Houston Chronicle Op/Ed Editor Raj Mankad, and about the importance of writing and public dialogue about architecture and urban development and its impact on projects and cities like Buffalo Bayou Park in Houston (2019 RBA Silver Medalist).
CULTIVATING CREATIVITY AND COMMUNITY WITH THE ARTS—April 7th, 2021
Boston Chief of Arts and Culture Kara Elliot Ortega and King Boston’s Imari Paris Jeffries join Yerba Buena Arts Center’s Deborah Cullinan, Santa Fe Art Institute’s Jamie Blosser, and PROYECTO’s Daniel Hernandez for a conversation about the future of arts-based development that draws upon lessons learned from Yerba Buena Gardens (1999 RBA Gold Medalist) in San Francisco.
PLANNING FOR EQUITY—April 14th, 2021
Chicago Commissioner of the Department of Planning and Development Maurice Cox, Folded Map Project creator Tonika Lewis Johnson, and the Boston Public Library Norman B. Leventhal Map Center’s Garrett Dash Nelson discuss the roles of design, planning, and public engagement in understanding and addressing equity in cities.
OBSERVATIONS AND LESSONS LEARNED—April 21st, 2021
How do we create beautiful, just, and resilient places? Anne-Marie Lubenau, Ted Landsmark, architect and urban planner David Gamble, and Northeastern University Fellow for Public Life and former Massachusetts House speaker Robert Deleo discuss observations from the semester-long series and consider the role of design and policy in shaping cities.