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What makes cities tick? GenslerOnCities explores the planning, design, and the potential futures of urban landscapes.

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Monday
Jun272016

More Than a Parklet: A Catalyst to Inspire Change

Gensler Philadelphia won the People’s Choice Award at the AIA National Convention's Parklet Design Competition. Image © Gensler.

In a landscape filled with concrete and asphalt, city pedestrians often crave people-friendly refuges within urban areas. Taking over underutilized spaces, parklets are a great example of how design actively participates within the community by creating new areas for people to connect with environment, the public and themselves.

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Monday
Jun272016

Student Housing Trends: The Transformation of Co-Living in College

Blackstone Residence Hall, Image © Gensler

Several months ago we wrote about the new emergence of innovative co-living solutions: development projects where shared living spaces and amenities are attached to private sleeping areas to create a more communal (and affordable) urban housing experience. Many responded that it sounded like grown-ups living in a college dormitory, so it’s only natural that new names in the student housing market are taking this concept one step further.

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Monday
Jun272016

First Look: Chicago Plumbers Invest in Training Facility That Celebrates People, Process, Place

Rendering © Gensler. This view from Washington Street shows the facility’s perforated, copper-anodized façade, an allusion to copper pipes used for plumbing.

Gensler’s design for the Chicago Plumbers Local 130 Joint Apprenticeship Committee Training Facility celebrates people (journeymen and apprentice plumbers), place (the City of Chicago) and process (by teaching and demonstrating cutting-edge water conservation technologies). The facility is located in the heart of a collection of union halls and offices at the far end of the West loop known as “Teamster City.”

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Monday
Jun272016

Crowdus: Reviving Deep Ellum in Downtown Dallas

Drugstore Cowboy sits at the junction of Main Street and Crowdus. When it rains, silver edged light filters through painted window panels saturated with color. Against the bruised skies on an early weekday morning, soaked brick buildings and graffiti spattered walls give life to mostly deserted streets. Inside the coffee bar, a small group of designers and activists from Gensler, Studio Outside, Design Future Dallas, and the Deep Ellum Foundation have pushed a couple of weathered wood tables together. Site maps, plans and process renderings cover all surfaces; a cohesive design begins to emerge and take shape.

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Thursday
Jun232016

Designing Campus Communities for Living and Learning

The Garage at Northwestern, Image © Gensler

This year Pamela Delphenich (PD) led a series of conversations on key issues surrounding the design of campus communities for living and learning. On May 18th she spoke with Henry Humphreys (HH), Dean of Students at Philadelphia University, former Senior Associate Dean for Student Life at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and former Director of Residential Life, Boston College. They discussed what priorities are truly important in creating a holistic student experience that supports academics, wellness and social growth.

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