If we are to ensure there is a strong and flexible social fabric in preparation for the next significant earthquake or natural disaster, innovating for community resilience has never been more critical.
Public Architecture and Shelter Media Project have invited architects and allied experts to play a collaborative and proactive role in creating community-based resiliency strategies that are implementable, accessible and participatory.
The strategies will be presented during the esteemed Architecture and the City Festival in San Francisco, celebrating its 10th anniversary this September. With 20,000 attendees, and presented by the AIA San Francisco and the Center for Architecture + Design, the festival is the premiere architecture and design festival in the Bay Area and the largest of its kind in the nation.
Resilient SF explores the overlay of three related challenges: how the built environment supports our preparedness and response to earthquakes and natural disasters, the shifting nature of civic infrastructures, and the role of existing social infrastructures—all the while keeping in mind the city’s underserved communities.
The term “relief” is featured on the front pages of most daily news coverage of disasters, while “preparedness” often refers to packaged goods in the form of emergency kits or seismically strengthening buildings. In this challenge, designers are asked to conceive of preparedness solutions that respond to an expanded set of social, environmental, and economic criteria in a way that is inclusive of the needs and assets found in San Francisco’s vulnerable communities.
Public Architecture invited three San Francisco firms–CMG Landscape Architecture, David Baker Architects, and Perkins+Will San Francisco–recognized for their responsive community design work to participate in Resilient SF. These firms will propose innovative approaches that are actionable with limited resources and that could serve as models for other cities. The design teams will present their solutions in front of a large festival audience, followed by a panel discussion and audience Q & A. Short videos will be produced from the event highlighting the key elements of each presentation; these will become part of a public website focused on Resilient San Francisco’s efforts.
Resilient SF Design Challenge
Date: September 18
Location: Interface Showroom, 457 Pacific Ave.
Time: 6:00 pm – 8:30 pm
Teams present their Design Challenge proposals to the Festival participants, followed by a moderated panel discussion and audience Q&A.
RE-IMAGE San Francisco
RE_IMAGE San Francisco is a large-scale visual experience; a night-time projection event on an iconic building intended to visualize past and future natural disasters in San Francisco and citizen’s response to them: it utilizes photographs, found footage and sounds, info-graphics, and animations. The event will take place on multiple nights during the Festival at a site to be determined. The projected images are intended to provoke a re-thinking of the concept of resilience and the role of the built environment in helping protect and strengthen our community.
ResilientSF is made possible through the generous support of Holcim and The Holcim Awards for Sustainable Construction. Connect with Holcim today to learn how to submit your innovative, socially responsible, and future-oriented projects to the 4th International Holcim Awards, and participate in a global community of more than 140 countries.
The International Interior Design Association (IIDA) proudly announces its partnership with Public Architecture in support of its pro bono design program, The 1%. The goal of The 1% is to secure the commitment of Designers of the built environment to donate a minimum of one percent of billable hours each year to pro bono work on behalf of the nonprofit community. As part of its own mission to elevate the Design profession and advance Design, IIDA encourages its Members to participate in The 1% program for the enrichment of their communities and around the world.
“With great enthusiasm, IIDA embraces the intent of Public Architecture’s program, The 1%,” IIDA Executive Vice President and CEO Cheryl S. Durst, Hon. FIIDA, LEED AP, said. “For IIDA Members, commitment to The 1% represents a chance to serve the public good and raise the profile of Design while building opportunities for themselves. As a nonprofit representative, I consider it an incredible privilege to offer this genuine commitment to the nonprofit community, and I am elated at the positive impact that this initiative will allow Design to have.”
Public Architecture founder and president John Peterson is likewise enthusiastic to receive support from IIDA. “The mission of The 1% — to bring the well-designed built environment to those in need — is perfectly synchronous with the IIDA mission of advancing Design in the world,” he said. “We are excited at the chance to partner with IIDA and look forward to the excellence that its Designers will bring to the nonprofit community.”
Currently, more than 1,200 firms representing 15,000 Designers have committed to Public Architecture’s The 1%, providing nearly $45 million in pro bono services each year and supporting the organization’s intent to make well-designed and healthy environments accessible to underserved communities. Public Architecture will assist IIDA in its commitment by facilitating introductions between firms and nonprofits seeking pro bono design services.
To learn more about this partnership, visit www.theonepercent.org.
By Amy Ress
Pro active design typically starts with architects and designers who identify a spatial or environmental challenge in their community that has both the potential to be solved by design expertise and the likelihood to lead to community benefit. Through The 1% Firm Survey, we know that only about 40 percent of The 1% firm participants intend to utilize The 1% matching service to find their next pro bono project. So how are designers finding pro bono clients?
Public Architecture increasingly sees firms in The 1% network who take a pro active approach to social impact work. I’d like to share one such example, a pro active pro bono design initiative of Perkins + Will (P+W) that serves to benefit the Tenderloin Neighborhood in San Francisco. I was privileged to have volunteered and contributed to P+W’s effort during an inspiring and fun day of community engagement on July 21st.
The Jones Neighborhood Nexus is a long term concept for an architectural/urban design vision at the intersection of Jones & Market Street for the benefit of the residents and community, and is an initiative of P+W’s pro-bono architecture design program called the Social Responsibility Initiative. The study aims to create a dialogue about transforming a high-traffic and socially and economically challenged street corner in the Tenderloin, and it explores ways to highlight the neighborhood history and identity. P+W’s vision is to activate the space with a program of public art, community engagement activities, pop-up retail, green space and interactive kiosks.
To kick start the study, P+W hosted a community art event at the site and worked with local children from Youth Spirit Artworks and the Boys & Girls Club in creating a temporary street mural. By morning on the day of the event, P+W taped off the sidewalk into sections and supplied non-toxic tempera paints for a group of volunteers to brush in a multi-color block pattern. By noon, youth groups were painting in the details of a colorful quilt and dedicating the sidewalk mural to the Tenderloin arts community. Through the process, the youth literally claimed their urban neighborhood with depictions of trees and flowers, mountains and the sky, and abstract and geometric patterns. A live band contributed to the spirited scene and the activities drew a steady stream of community onlookers, from the local arts community to the homeless, hipsters, seniors and tourists. Nearly everyone was interested and asked questions about the project, and many encouraged the youth in their efforts.
Preparing for the event was no easy accomplishment. To temporarily close intersection and re-route the bus line, P+W worked over several months and up until the day of the event with numerous city agencies including the Mayor’s Office, Arts Commission, and MUNI. P+W’s team arrived in the early morning hours to install the barricades and to set up. Two P+W staff volunteers leading the SRI effort confided they were so anxious the day would go well that they couldn’t sleep the night before. Thanks to P+W’s SRI Group: Seth Meisler, Rosannah Sandoval, Jeremy Bamberger, David Bradshaw, Jason Wilkinson, and Andrew Wolfram—for their efforts that paid off.
While the mural was temporary and removed after one week, the project exceeded P+W’s goal to spark a dialogue. The mural gave the neighborhood youth a voice in their district’s long term vision. Moreover, the project was a point of community pride and got people to see the potential of the Jones & Market Street intersection to be transformed to better represent and serve the community.
Last year, ASID and Public Architecture began a partnership to encourage ASID members to pledge to The 1% program. Amy Ress recently caught up with emerging interior designer and member of The 1% program, Kia Weatherspoon, Allied ASID, to learn about her inspiring approach to practice in the National Capital area. Over the past several months, Kia has worked with other interior designers and mental health professionals to establish the nonprofit, Room to Rebloom.
Amy: How do you describe your design practice?
Kia: Determined by Design, LLC is a concept driven design firm. We believe design is determined by four things: concept, individuality, connectivity, and people.
Amy: What values and interests do you bring to your work? What inspires you?
Kia: The two things I value the most as a designer are a strong concept and people. You can’t have one without the other. The foundation of any project is the concept, which guides every decision I make. My concepts are then formed around people and how they will experience the space. I’ve always been inspired by creating impactful spaces for people; spaces that invoke a positive and reaffirming emotion.
Amy: Please tell me about Room to Rebloom. How does R2R contribute to helping women in D.C. who are victims of domestic violence?
Kia: Room to Rebloom’s mission is to empower low-income women and families in the National Capital area who have been victims of domestic violence by providing them with design services and other resources needed to create inspiring home spaces, and to help in their endeavor to rebuild their lives. Room to Rebloom will aid these women by using restorative design and revitalizing their environment to create an atmosphere of security and inspiration.
Amy: As a new participant, what do you hope to gain from The 1% pro bono design program?
Kia: I joined The 1% program with a goal to inspire other emerging designers to make an impact in their community. As designers, we have a commitment to make good design accessible to the community at large. This is why I am involved with Room to Rebloom, to create spaces that will have a powerful, positive and lasting impact on these women and their families. Resources like The 1% program are invaluable because it gives designers a starting point to give back.
Amy: You’ve mentioned being an active ASID member. How does the ASID partnership with Public Architecture’s 1% program support the Society’s commitment to advance the profession and communicate the impact of interior design?
Kia: The key to any successful design venture is collaboration. This collaboration is influential because it reinforces ASID’s commitment to promote the value of design. Design value encompasses pro bono design but it is often overlooked. ASID’s partnership with The 1% emphasizes the importance of pro bono design to ASID’s members and the design community.
Amy: What advice would you give other designers who are interested to get involved?
Kia: It’s advantageous to start small. Look at the needs of the surrounding communities, find projects that inspire you, and volunteer your time/services. A small organization may appreciate something as simple as a fresh color scheme and organizational tips. The biggest impact sometimes comes from the smallest changes. These types of minor details can be the essence of pro bono design and make a positive difference.
Give 1%. Are you an interior design member of ASID, but not a part of The 1% network that is making a difference? Join now.
Public Architecture is delighted to announce a partnership with A Billion + Change, a national campaign inspiring the largest commitment of pro bono service in history. Together the two organizations will work collaboratively to drive the transformation of business culture in America, making pro bono service the new normal for businesses of all sizes and sectors.
In a joint statement today, A Billion + Change Executive Director Jenny Lawson, and Public Architecture President and Founder, John Peterson said, “Recognizing our common commitment to pledges of service, activation of those pledges, measurement of success and our common belief in the future and power of pro bono service, we see this partnership as an exciting opportunity to grow the community of business owners and professionals who are committed to contributing pro bono and skilled services to underserved communities.” Read more
Public Architecture is pleased to release Hawaii Wildlife Center, the third in an on-going series of case studies that feature projects by the American Institute of Architects members participating in The 1% program who are making pro bono service an integral part of design practice. The Hawaii Wildlife Center, located on the Big Island, is dedicated to protecting, conserving, and aiding in the recovery of Hawaii’s native wildlife through hands-on treatment, research, training, science education and cultural programs. Boston based Ruhl Walker Architects designed HWC’s state-of-the-art care and rehabilitation facility for native animals. Read more
Public Architecture, in partnership with AIA San Francisco and Interface, is proud to inaugurate a national award recognizing exemplary projects that serve the public good. The Social Impact Design Award is a unique opportunity for architects and designers to share the impact of their work and to promote the significant relationship between quality design and social outcomes.
This national award is being run in conjunction with AIA San Francisco’s Constructed Realities awards program. Submissions will be accepted until July 18, 2013. For more information and to submit, click here. Read more
Public Architecture invites the architecture community to join us and the American Institute of Architects (AIA) as we partner to make pro bono service an integral part of practice at the AIA National Convention in Denver, CO on June 20-22. Together, we salute the 450 architecture firms recognized for their pledge to pro bono service through The 1% program and their AIA and FAIA members on staff. Please join us at these planned activities. We hope to see you there. Read more
Public Architecture seeks an Administrative Manager who is self-directed and disciplined to administer office and operational logistics, manage and support initiatives, oversee marketing and communications, and provide executive assistance to the Founder & President. Please help spread the word within your communities! The right candidate will possess the following skills and qualifications:
- Excellent writing ability, including editing and proofreading; able to turn abstract thoughts and concepts into written material
- Confident and articulate communicator on the phone, in person, and via email
- At ease balancing multiple and changing priorities with diverse ranges in subject matter
- Takes initiative and set priorities; excels at self-management
- Able to anticipate obstacles, adapt to unforeseen circumstances, and propose solutions
- Finds reward in enabling and supporting others
- Comfortable working as a part of a small team comprised of a variety of personalities and work styles
- Demonstrates tact, diplomacy, judgment, and discretion
- Computer literacy in a PC/Windows environment, including MS Word, Excel, and PowerPoint; InDesign, Photoshop, and HTML experience a plus
- Undergraduate degree along with 3-5 years of professional experience in an administrative, program, or executive support role
- An interest in or passion for increasing the social impact of the design of the built environment is preferred but not required
For more details about the core responsibilities of the position and how to apply, click here.
On the evening of May 29, project leads from STUDIOS and Kiva will present the behind-the-scenes making of Kiva’s new office space. The Kiva project is widely celebrated for its thoughtful balance of programmatic needs, organizational culture, and creative solutions that led to substantial cost savings. Yet the project also offers valuable lessons about the design process and the unique partnership between designers and pro bono clients. Together, their collaborative relationship enabled STUDIOS and Kiva to successfully realize a shared vision, build a long-term relationship, and leverage the completed project for mutual benefit.
Register here for this free event, and take advantage of this opportunity to take a closer look at the people, processes, and principles that make pro bono design projects a success.
Public Architecture, in collaboration with researchers from the Harvard Business School, launches The 1% Firm Survey–our fifth and most comprehensive to date. The 1% Firm Survey is our most important tool to improve The 1% program and understand the participating architecture and design firms’ experience.
The survey is broken down into six major sections covering pro bono management structure, history and active pursuits, matching and program experience, and firms’ profiles. Now its fifth iteration, the survey history is building a consistent set of firm responses that supports our ability to report changes to pro bono practice over time.
We encourage firms representing every design discipline of the more than 1100 firms participating in The 1% program to respond, including landscape architecture, interior design and architecture. Additionally important will be to represent all firm sizes from sole proprietors to large firms.
If your firm is participating in The 1% program, we want to hear from you. If you are not your firm’s main contact for The 1%, please send this link to the person who is.
Take the survey or copy and paste the URL below into your internet browser: https://qtrial.qualtrics.com/WRQualtricsSurveyEngine/?SID=SV_1QXHRvN2uCjjY3j&Preview=Survey&_=1
As an incentive, our friends at Coalesse have generously donated the stylish Hosu convertible work lounge to be given to one randomly selected survey-taker.
By Jennifer Lau
This weekend we had the pleasure of attending the thirteenth annual Structures For Inclusion conference at the University of Minnesota College of Design. This year’s theme—“Dignifying Design”—was a fitting conclusion to the first ever Public Interest Design Week (#PIDWeek) and featured presentations by some of the most inspirational leaders in the field today, including many friends, colleagues, and former Public Architecture staff. Read more