Seattle 2035 + Designing for Democracy: Event this Thursday


Christine Gaspar, Center for Urban Pedagogy

Designing for Democracy

Seattle Central Public Library – Microsoft Auditorium

5:30 pm – Seattle 2035 Open House

6:30 pm – Designing for Democracy: The Center for Urban Pedagogy Lecture / Q+A

8:30 pm – End of Program

Learn how New York’s Center for Urban Pedagogy uses art and design to improve public engagement in shaping the built environment.  This lecture will offer one (1) Professional Development Hour (PDH). Please register here if you wish to receive credit.

Join us for an evening of information and inspiration about planning Seattle’s future.

At 5:30 p.m., the City of Seattle’s Department of Planning and Development will host an open house about Seattle 2035, a project to update the City’s 20-year comprehensive plan. Learn about updates to this plan and give your opinion on what you want to happen in Seattle over the next 20 years.

At 6:30 p.m., you’ll discover how another city communicates civic information to its citizens. Where does the water go when you flush the toilet? What is affordable housing? Who owns the Internet? Who decides where noxious land uses go? The Center for Urban Pedagogy (CUP) wants you to know! CUP is a New York City-based nonprofit organization that makes accessible, visual explanations of the complex issues that shape our everyday lives.

CUP’s Executive Director, Christine Gaspar, will talk about how the organization collaborates with grassroots organizers and talented designers to create posters, workshop tools, websites and animations that demystify policy and planning and give individuals the tools to advocate for their own community needs.  The projects are designed with and for advocacy organizations to help increase their capacity to mobilize their constituents on important urban issues.

The tools are in use by dozens of community organizers and tens of thousands of individuals in New York City and beyond, and has been featured in the Cooper-Hewitt Museum’s National Design Triennial, PS-1, and two Venice Biennales.  CUP has also been awarded a 2012 Curry Stone Design Prize and a 2010 Rockefeller Foundation Cultural Innovation Fund Award.

This event is presented in partnership with the City of Seattle Department of Planning and DevelopmentSeattle Public Library, and the University of Washington Department of Landscape Architecture.


Gate to Nowhere: Public Art Installation

Gate to Nohwere

The “Gate to Nowhere” celebrates Seattle’s unfinished freeways by reflecting their provocative beauty, unintended urbanism and legacy of 1960s citizen activism.

This temporary art installation is proposed for the last days of Seattle’s infamous ‘Ramp to Nowhere’ in Montlake (removal set for late-2014 or 2015). The concept is simple: wrap a single support pier in the reflected surroundings of ‘nowhere’.

For more information and to make a donation:

Michael Sorkin’s proposal for the Obama Presidential Library


Writing on ArchDaily, Jose Luis Gabriel Cruz posted this on Michael Sorkin’s proposal for the Obama Presidential Library. The proposal critically examines the presidential library, not as a building typology per se, but for its potential in transforming urban communities by asking, “How could the construction of an institution itself leverage social and environmental transformation?”. To do so, the library would reside in the Woodlawn neighborhood of Chicago’s South Side, which would reflect a bold paradigm shift considering its rural-based precedents. 

You can read the entire proposal here.

Pecha Kucha Night: January 30

PechaKucha_Big Ideas_eblast

Thursday January 30th, 5:30-8:30pm

SAM Olympic Sculpture Park PACCAR Pavilion, Free

The evening will bring together presentations by leaders from across Seattle’s innovation/creation community to explore shared visions for Seattle’s future to inspire Seattle 2035, a year long, citywide conversation to guide the update of the city’s 20-year comprehensive plan.

Design Lab: An Open Sketchbook on Aurora Avenue


Some colleagues here at the University of Washington are running a quarter-long collaborative design lab with Aurora Avenue as the site of investigation and reimagination. Every Thursday over the next nine weeks, they are hosting a public charrette at the Henry Art Gallery. Check out this site, their blog, and their Facebook page for more info and the charrette schedule.