The Just City Lab has documented four projects (and counting) through interviews with design teams to determine how well urban planners, architects, landscape architects, and urban designers realized the aspirations for the Just City through their design strategies. The projects range in location: St. Louis, MO; Stockton, CA; Queens, NY; and Washington, DC. These cities confront ever-present legacies: racial segregation, population decline, displacement, violence, and/or gentrification. In confronting and reshaping these legacies, these projects address specific Just City Values, and highlight the key challenges, intentions, and outcomes for achieving greater justice through design.
Featured Case Study
CREATIVE REACTION LAB • ST. LOUIS, MO • 2014 — PRESENT
creative innovation • equity • power • engagement • prosperity
Creative Reaction Lab, a St. Louis-based nonprofit community design firm, was founded as a call to action for designers to develop solutions to racial injustice in response to the 2014 death of Michael Brown in nearby Ferguson, MO. Since then, the Lab strives to educate, train and challenge cities to co-create solutions with Black and Latinx populations to design healthy and racially equitable communities. Their design process — Equity-Centered Community Design — addresses oppression and power dynamics using equity, human-building, holistic history and acknowledgement of trauma in St. Louis and beyond. They work with industries including education, media, government and health, to be more inclusive and open to integrating equitable policies and procedures. Read more.
More Case Studies
DAY LABOR STATION • LIZ OGBU • STOCKTON, CA • 2007
acknowledgement • respect • beauty • dignity • collaboration • inspiration
Public Architecture, a nonprofit architecture firm based in San Francisco, designed the Day Labor Station project for their client, the day labor community, based on findings from interviews with day laborers around the Bay Area. The architects designed a prototypical structure to be deployed at day labor sites that is flexible enough to serve various community uses, such as an employment center, meeting space and classroom. Read more.
HOLDING PATTERN • INTERBORO • QUEENS, NY • 2011
belonging • empathy • access • delight • engagement
Interboro Partners, a New York City-based urban design firm, designed Holding Pattern for MoMA PS1’s summer Warm-Up series. The designers used the temporary installation to connect with neighboring community groups, determine their needs, and construct items to fulfill these needs. These constructed items spent the summer in PS1’s courtyard – in a “Holding Pattern” – and were then gifted to the community groups in the fall. Read more.
11TH STREET BRIDGE • OMA • WASHINGTON, DC • 2014 — PRESENT
Diversity • Community • Delight • Equity • Connectivity
The 11th Street Bridge Park is a grassroots-led project to repurpose a decaying railway trestle as a new park connecting disparate neighborhoods on either side of the Anacostia River. The grassroots initiative was adopted by Anacostia nonprofit Building Bridges Across the River (BBAR), which led a design competition for the proposed park. They selected the winning team of OMA and OLIN to turn this idea into a reality. Read more.