August 18, 2021
by Center for Architecture
Reset Email Request Proposal 2500x1666

The Center for Architecture is excited to announce the four interdisciplinary teams that will be developing proposals for environments that encourage new ways of living collaboratively, which will be presented as part of the Center for Architecture’s upcoming exhibition, Reset: Towards a New Commons. The exhibition, opening in early 2022, is co-curated by Barry Bergdoll, Meyer Schapiro Professor of Art History and Archaeology, Columbia University, and Juliana Barton, independent historian and curator.


Contemporary American culture is increasingly disconnected, with people divided by needs, generations, and beliefs.

The negative impacts of social estrangement extend, but are not limited to, the isolation of aging populations and people with disabilities. Cities, suburbs, and rural areas wittingly and unwittingly separate certain groups from larger communities through spaces designed according to age, needs, or income. Rather than designing specific spaces for specific needs, Reset: Towards a New Commons considers how spaces may be designed for all, addressing the need for barrier-free environments and practices rooted in Universal Design. The exhibition will explore how architecture can address this while helping to create communities that foster inclusion, cooperation, and mutual assistance in the broadest of terms.

Reset: Towards a New Commons will present several case studies that demonstrate how designers have helped foster community, many of them focusing on specific target groups—isolated religious communes, parents-to-be, people with disabilities, or seniors with dementia. In order to prompt designers to think beyond these examples and envision radically different environments that promote a broader and more holistic approach to inclusion, the Center for Architecture issued an RFP in early 2021 to solicit proposals from interdisciplinary teams.



Prospective teams were invited to submit proposals for environments throughout the United States that encourage new ways of living collaboratively while considering cross-generational living and designing for different abilities. The call asked for proposals that operate beyond the individual unit, addressing environments of multiple scales and exploring ideas of process and policy around one or more of three typologies: living (both permanent and temporary housing), healing (healthcare facilities, caregiving and elder care spaces), and gathering (public realm interventions).

Block Party: From Independent Living to Disability Collectives – Berkley, CA
Javier Arbona, University of California, Davis (Davis, CA)
Irene Cheng, Cheng+Snyder; California College of the Arts (San Francisco, CA)
David Gissen, Parsons School of Design, The New School (New York, NY)
Rod Henmi, FAIA, LEED AP, NOMA, HKIT Architects (Oakland, CA)
Jerron Herman, Artist and Dancer (New York, NY)
Georgina Kleege, Author; University of California, Berkeley (Berkeley, CA)
Chip Lord, University of California, Santa Cruz (Santa Cruz, CA)
Brett Snyder, AIA, Cheng+Snyder; University of California, Davis (Davis, CA)

Decolonizing Suburbia – Cincinnati, OH
Andrew Bruno, RA (New York, NY)
Alessandro Orsini, Architensions, Columbia Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation (New York, NY)
William Prince, Parc Office, Parsons School of Design, The New School (New York, NY)
Nick Roseboro, Assoc, AIA, Architensions (New York, NY)
Sharon Egretta Sutton, PhD, FAIA, Parsons School of Design, The New School (New York, NY)
John Vogt, Parc Office (New York, NY)

Re:Play Reclaiming the Commons Through Play – New York, NY
David Burney, FAIA, Pratt Institute (New York, NY)
Caitlin Cahill, Pratt Institute (New York, NY)
Catherine Chattergoon, NOMA, Pratt Institute (New York, NY)
Nilda Cosco, The Natural Learning Initiative, North Carolina State University(Raleigh, NC)
Jerrod Delaine, Pratt Institute (New York, NY)
Deborah Gans, FAIA, Gans and Company (New York, NY)
Kate Levy, Documentary Filmmaker, Kate Levy Productions (New York, NY)
Robin Moore, The Natural Learning Initiative, North Carolina State University (Raleigh, NC)
Nancy Owens, LEED AP, Nancy Owens Studio (New York, NY)
Jared Rice, NOMAS, Pratt Institute (New York, NY)
With: Neighborhood Safety Initiatives of the Center for Court Innovation

Aging Against the Machine – Oakland, CA
Neeraj Bhatia, THE OPEN WORKSHOP, California College of the Arts (Oakland, CA)
Todd Levon Brown, Environmental Psychology Program, CUNY Graduate Center (New York, NY)
Ignacio G. Galan, Barnard College, Columbia University (New York, NY)
Lindsay A. Goldman, Grantmakers in Aging (New York, NY)
Karen Kubey, Pratt Institute, Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation (New York, NY)
Annie Ledbury, East Bay Asian Local Development Corporation (Oakland, CA)

Over the next six months, the four selected teams will work with exhibition curators to refine their proposals and projects.

Thank you to the Reset selection jury:
Juliana Barton, Independent Historian and Curator
Barry Bergdoll, Meyer Schapiro Professor of Art History and Archaeology, Columbia University
Rosanne Haggerty, President and Chief Executive Officer, Community Solutions
Amy Hurst, Associate Professor, Department of Occupational Therapy, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development and Department of Technology, Culture and Society, Tandon School of Engineering, New York University
Xian Horn, Disability Advocate
Marc Norman, Associate Professor of Practice, Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning, University of Michigan
Peter Robinson, Board Member, BlackSpace Urbanist Collective
Barbara Weinreich, Assoc. AIA, Director of Undergraduate Programs, New York School of Interior Design