The Design Trust for Public Space revealed the winners of their citywide competition “Public for All: Rethinking Shared Space in NYC”. The initiative invited everyone living in NYC's five boroughs to send research, design, and planning proposals that would provide equal access and quality public space for all New Yorkers, especially at a time when issues like aging infrastructure, a growing population, dwindling public resources, and climate change are on the rise.

The competition attracted 105 applications that addressed major topics like mitigating gentrification to adapting underutilized buildings to affirming the rights of youth. Last night during a public event at the J.M. Kaplan Fund, two projects out of five finalists were announced as the winners. They are:

When the Going Gets Tough...Addressing Equity & Quality of Life in Community-Managed Public Space

  • Proposed by: Neighborhood Plaza Program of the Horticultural Society of New York in collaboration with Uptown Grand Central
  • Project summary: “Close to half of NYC’s 70 pedestrian plazas are in under-served communities. New Yorkers love these plazas, so even struggling organizations are willing to invest the time, money and sweat equity to privately manage them. This project will explore innovative strategies for addressing the challenge of operating and programming public space in neighborhoods where resources are scarce, organizational capacity is low, and quality of life infractions are frequent.”

Community Land Trust as a Model for Public Space

  • Proposed by: South Bronx Unite, in collaboration with New York City Community Land Initiative and the Mott Haven-Port Morris Community Land Stewards including Birthing Project, Community Connections for Youth, Friends of Brook Park, Rollin Together, Radical Health, and South Bronx Farmers Market, and UpBeat NYC
  • Project summary: “This project would create a comprehensive urban development plan for the Mott Haven-Port Morris area in the Bronx and advance the community land trust as a sustainable community-owned development model citywide.”