Architecture for the Future of Public Housing
What is the future of public housing in the U.S.? How can architects and residents work together to improve existing homes and create new ones? In collaboration with residents of the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA), Peterson Rich Office (PRO) has produced a creative proposal for preserving public housing through adaptive reuse. Their work was recently featured at the Museum of Modern Art. Join PRO and NYCHA Tenant Association leader Felicia Gordon to learn about their collaborative process, PRO’s design proposal, and where we might go from here.
In 2017, the American Institute of Architects declared access to housing a “fundamental right.” The webinar is part of a series produced by the AIA Right-to-Housing Working Group. In each episode, we ask: “What does the right to housing mean in practice?” and “How can architects contribute?”
Nathan Rich, AIA, Founding Principal, Peterson Rich Office
Felicia Gordon, President, Resident Association at the Hernandez Houses, New York
Karen Kubey, Assistant Professor, University of Toronto; Convener, AIA Right-to-Housing Working Group (moderator)
Nathan Rich, AIA
Nathan Rich is founding principal at Peterson Rich Office, a Brooklyn-based architecture practice recognized for its cultural, publicly engaged, and social impact projects at multiple scales. Since establishing their firm in 2014, Nathan along with his partner Miriam Peterson have led a diverse team in realizing projects for leading clients in the cultural, residential, retail, and public sectors. 2023 will see the firm’s completion of multiple projects, including an artist studio for Nina Chanel Abney, The Shepherd Gallery & Arts Center in Detroit, the new Davison Art Gallery at Wesleyan University, and participation in the ‘New Publics’ exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art. Through an ongoing 8-year partnership with NYCHA (NYC Housing Authority) PRO creates and conducts inclusive community design exercises that provide critical insights and recommendations aimed at helping to improve the country’s largest public housing program and is currently working to shepherd design excellence for NYCHA. PRO is currently engaged in work on 16 NYCHA sites in all five boroughs of New York City.
Recent awards include the ‘New Practice New York’ prize by the AIA, ‘Design Vanguard’ by Architectural Record, and Emerging Voices by The Architectural League.
For seven years Felicia Gordon has served as president of the Resident Association at the Hernandez Houses in Manhattan, New York, where she is also a resident. She is also Vice President of the Downtown Democratic Club.
Karen Kubey (moderator) is an urbanist specializing in housing and social justice. She is the editor of Housing as Intervention: Architecture towards Social Equity (Architectural Design, 2018) and served as the first executive director of the Institute for Public Architecture. Holding degrees in architecture from the University of California, Berkeley and the Columbia University Graduate School for Architecture, Planning and Preservation (GSAPP), Kubey began her career as a designer of below-market housing. She recently completed a Fulbright U.S. Scholar fellowship at the Universidad Torcuato Di Tella in Buenos Aires, Argentina and is currently Assistant Professor of Architecture at the University of Toronto. Kubey leads the AIA Housing and Community Development Knowledge Community Right-to-Housing Working Group.