A Playbook for Inclusive Placemaking: Community Process

By Katherine Peinhardt, Nate Storring, Project for Public Spaces

This article is the first in a four-part series on equity in public spaces. Read part two, which focuses on programming, and part three, which focuses on design. When New York’s High Line opened in 2009, it was hailed as both a landmark in landscape architecture and a grassroots success story. The project began in 1999, when two strangers sitting next to one another at a community meeting, Joshua David and Robert Hammond, began lamenting the planned destruction of a privately-owned elevated railway in Manhattan. They mounted a successful five-year campaign to save it, and then started the design competition that would later transform it into one of the country's most visited parks. Crowds on the High Line. Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons But the story doesn’t end there. In the decade since it opened, prices in the neighborhood around the High Line have soared. “Starchitect” buildings sprung up along the disused rail tracks, and most recently, its northern...

Rockaway Youth Task Force

5 Communities Building Resilience to Thrive in an Uncertain Future

By Aditi Malhotra, Shareable

In the fall of 2012, when hurricane Sandy made landfall in the Rockaway peninsula in Queens, New York, the Rockaway Youth Task Force (RYTF) was ready to lead rescue and recovery efforts. Remarkably, the volunteer group was less than a year old. But members of this youth-led task force were reportedly among the most efficient responders to the crisis that followed Sandy. The group was ready because earlier that year, Milan Taylor, the 21-year-old founder of RYTF, and friends, started mobilizing young people in Rockaway’s neighborhoods to get them more involved in local politics and civic life. Taylor had been appointed to a community board in 2010 and the lack of representation of people his age unsettled him. There were many problems such as inequity in schools, discriminatory practices in the criminal justice system, and low voter turnout in Rockaway that needed young people to engage and lead solutions, Taylor said. Far Rockaway in...