Build Architecture Awards

Build Architecture Awards 2015 95 rePLACE Urban Studio has a collective vision to build a practice based on the tenets of smart design. Founding Partners Philip Palmgren and Peter Syrett explain the firm’s philosophy and give us a glimpse into the future. We are honoured to receive the Most Inno- vative Urban Architecture Firm 2015 – USA in recognition of rePLACE’s contribution to improving the places we live. This award is recognition of rePLACE’s expansive, creative, and forward-looking work. Our success would not be possible without having clients and collaborators that share our passion to make cities better places. Our success arises out of a single question we ask at the beginning of every project, “How will this work make a difference?” rePLACE is an urban design lab committed to shaping a healthier urban future. Tailored to address the unique challenges of each pro- ject, our approach is built upon a foundation of data, research, collaboration, explora- tion, and creativity. This, along with our cross-discipline expertise, positions our team to conceptualize a full range of urban design services from small-scale cost effective urban interventions that build early momentum ranging up to large-scale sustainable visions for the future. We have worked with a wide range of private and public sector clients such as: • New York City Economic Development Corporation; • Empire State Development (Urban Development Corporation of New York State); • The City of Shanghai; • The Village of Mamaroneck, New York; • Trinity Real Estate; • Columbia University in the City of New York; • North Shore LIJ Health System; • The World-Wide Group; and • The Durst Organization We believe that every project should have a positive footprint. To that end, we endeavour to create rich urban environments that build social, cultural, economic, and ecological capital. In addition, we believe in boundless exploration. The result of this pushes our work beyond that of a conventional practice. An example of this work is our proprietary suite of digital apps that we have created to curate big data into focus for cities and their residents. The goal for each of these apps,, the Community Dashboard and the Innovation District Crea- tor, is to make publicly accessible information we use in practice, transparent, and digesti- ble for everyone. Our hope is that these tools will inform a dialogue about how the physical characteristics of our world directly impact a community’s health. Research and action is a fundamental part of our process. We recognize that disruptive change – true innovation – doesn’t come from traditional practices, but rather from exploration. Therefore during both project based and independent research we are constantly exploring and seeking out collabo- rative opportunities. To further assist us in this journey we have started a creative business incubator, 2PLefty Inc., in which we curate membership to inspire interdisci- plinary collaboration. We believe this gives us the ability to identify and understand the ideas and spirit of our time, and to also see how emergent concepts may be adapted to inform the physical future of cities. We see ourselves as a part of the continu- um of urban thinkers who understand that PLACE matters. Unlike our predecessors, we have access to the rich bounty of data of our information age. An essential part of practice is developing new data driven tools to find hidden patterns, show unrealized potential, and see emerging trends. One key way we use technology is to hear the many voices that shape the urban environment from the private and public sectors. We use technolo- Most Innovative Urban Architecture Firm 2015 - USA rePLACE Urban Studio’ Company: rePLACE Urban Studio Name: Philip Palmgren and Peter Syrett, Founding Partners Email: [email protected] Web Address: Address: 12-16 Vestry Street, 7th Floor, New York, NY 10013 Telephone: 212.380.1079 gy to gain an understanding of stakeholders’ distinct points of view, concerns, and drivers. For example, The Community Dashboard is an interactive application that links stakehold- er input to location. This allows rePLACE to have real time input on a design as it evolves. Our practice is dedicated to doing smart, creative, forward-looking work. For this to happen, we have carefully recruited highly skilled and inquisitive design talent who are acting at a scale that can make positive physical impacts in the world. The key to our success is simply that we challenge ourselves every day to make the world a better place. The region we operate in, North America, is in the early days of an urban renaissance. Peo- ple are moving back into cities and enjoying the benefits of urban life. According to the US Census Bureau, in 2013 2.3 million more people were living in urban areas than in 2012 and between 2012 and 2013, only 92 out of the country’s 381 metropolitan areas lost population. This renaissance isn’t without its challenges such as: climate change, resource constraints, economic inequality, social justice, and demographic shifts. Addressing these challenges is an opportunity to ensure that this renaissance endures well into the future. By 2050 it is expected that 70% of the world’s population will be urban dwellers. This reality means mankind must seek out new ideas, evolve, and adapt to tackle the challenges of tomorrow. We believe by researching our col- lective past, smartly utilizing technology, forg- ing new tools for tomorrow, and questioning the boundaries of the future, we will evolve as urbanists. We hope to shape our future selves as implementers of responsive public realm and definers of regenerative cities.