Collect Pond and the Urban Backstage
led by Elliott Maltby of thread collective and Clarinda Mac Low of Culture Push
Join this MAS Jane’s Walk that will examine the urban backstage in the context of Collect Pond’s history and NYC’s water infrastructure. Let’s explore together the interconnection of ecological and social histories, changing perspectives and strategies in relation to water, and the urban backstage, where residents can rehearse, rather than perform. It is a provisional place, one for testing ideas, to practice imperfectly. Friday, May 4 3:00 PM
Gita, co-led the Pratt Institute Spring Resilience Study abroad trip with Jaime Stein, Chair of the SES Dept, Nadya Nenadich, chair of the Historic Preservation Department and Theo Prudone. The week long study took students across the Dutch landscape to study the convergence of water management, innovation, history and heritage – where the Dutch are masters. #prattnetherlands2018
Gita joins other active members of RETI and the RDM Campus – Ben Margolis of SBIDC, Gabrielle Muris of Urban Impact, and Carter Craft of the Dutch Consulate at GreenBuild in Boston, to discuss RETI Center : A Model of Resilient Economic Development. Billions in federal, state and municipal funds are being invested in coastal resiliency efforts, but who benefits most from these investments? The RETI Center proposes plans to ensure that this funding does not overlook socio-economically vulnerable coastal communities, but is instead used to leverage a better economic future for them. Will you be at GreenBuild? Join us for a lively discussion, Wednesday November 8th, 8.30am
thread collective will open it’s doors to TroutHouse as part of our annual participation in Open House New York weekend. We welcome you to join us on a tour, scheduled for 11am and 1pm. TroutHouse is a beautiful example of thread’s philosophy bringing landscape, architecture and interiors seamlessly into a single building. A 6,000 sf LEED Gold Home, it houses our architecture office on the ground floor with several residential units above. Features include a green roof with skyline views, 5kW solar canopy, lush yard, lots of natural daylight. The project is created by thread05, a development arm of thread collective.
visit www.ohny.org for reservations and directions.
Gita Nandan, will be joining Andrea Parker, Sharon Davis, Michelle de la Uz, Brad Lander, to discuss leveraging development in Gowanus to expand the neighborhood’s green infrastructure network and preserve the area’s cultural assets. The Urban Design Forum presents a discussion on the planned remediation of the Gowanus Canal that is driving enormous development in an industrial quarter of the city. thread will discuss the Gowanus Field Station as a tool for citizen science, youth engagement, and interactive knowledge building in urban areas. Thursday August 10th, 6pm at the American Can Factory.
Gita and Elliott were invited to join the Urban Design Forum class of 2016. We are proud to join such a cohort of esteemed colleagues in this great institution. The Urban Design Forum members are civic leaders building dynamic, equitable, and resilient cities around the world. The 2016 Class of Fellows is leading significant projects in the New York region, from the expansion of the Second Avenue Subway to the implementation of Mayor de Blasio’s affordable housing plan. They are designing the renovation of the New York Public Library’s Stephen A. Schwarzman Building and the New York Wheel on the St. George waterfront. They are improving Red Hook’s public housing through urban agriculture and connecting the Brooklyn waterfront’s public spaces with a 14-mile greenway. http://urbandesignforum.org/review/classof2016/
Kicking off 2017, Gita and Elliott wrote a piece for Next City, on their thoughts around fences,an issue they have been mulling over for years. The project was in partnership with Rachel Abrams, a visual storyteller, of Turnstone Consulting, who created illustrative images of the typology of fences explored. A Field Guide to Fences.
thread collective will open it’s doors to TroutHouse as part of our annual participation in Open House New York weekend. We welcome you to join us on a tour, scheduled for 11am and 1pm. Please make sure to make a reservation as tours are limited to 25. TroutHouse is a beautiful example of thread’s philosophy bringing landscape, architecture and interiors seamlessly into a single building. A 6,000 sf LEED Gold Home, it houses our architecture office on the ground floor with several residential units above. Features include a green roof with skyline views, 5kW solar canopy, lush yard, lots of natural daylight. The project is created by thread05, a development arm of thread collective.
visit www.ohny.org for reservations and directions.
Ms. Nandan will present Designing Interiors for Resiliency on October 28th at NeoCon East, in Philadelphia. NEOCON EAST is the nation’s premier design expo and conference for commercial interiors on the East Coast. This year’s show will feature new partnerships with important regional design organizations as well as the best in products and services, ready to specify, across a spectrum of vertical markets including Workplace, Healthcare, Education, Public Space, Hospitality, Retail and Government.
Designing Interiors for Resiliency
We invite you to join us for our summer rooftop cocktail parties
for great company and beautiful sunsets
7pm JOIN US! feel free to bring a friend
and if you can’t make it, come July 7th or Sept date TBD
Brooklyn Home Tour Saturday, May 9th, 10AM-4PM
We are excited to be participting with Dwell on Design for their Brooklyn House Tour, as part of the Brooklyn Design week, May 8-10th. TroutHouse will be opened all day for those buying tickets to see homes being opened up around Brooklyn. To purchase tickets, see Eventbrite; and to see more on TroutHouse : thread’s showcase and LEED Gold home and office in Bushwick Brooklyn
Meet the Architects, May 7, 2015 from 7 PM – 9 PM
Dwell hosts Meet the Architects night. Join us as talk about TroutHouse at FREEHOLD, 45 South 3rd Street, Brooklyn. Meet the Architects is a chance to hear from the brilliant minds behind the innovative homes featured on the Brooklyn Home Tours. The designers and architects present and discuss methods of design, renovation, and preservation taking place on the storied streets of Brooklyn.
Field Lessons from the Ground: Building Urban Resilience, Upon the Occasion of the 10th Anniversary of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Gita was invited, as a representative of New York City and the Red Hook Brooklyn Community, to the Bellagio Conference Center in Lake Como Italy, to join 30 global leaders in resiliency for a week long set of deep discussions and engaged peer-learning. Innovative lessons were exchanged between countries struggling with a varied set of conditions due to climate change. This conference was a part of the The MAS Cities Global Resilience Network – The MAS Cities, Global Resilience Network is an international network linking local urban innovators who make cities more livable and resilient. It was initiated by the Municipal Art Society of New York in 2011 at a convening at The Rockefeller Foundation’s Bellagio Conference Center. Subsequent follow-up meetings were held with network partners in Dhaka, Geneva, London, Montreal, New York City, Paris, Toronto, Vancouver and Washington DC.
Interviewed for Long Island for Sale, Ms. Nandan offers her perspective on sustainable building for the eastern shores of New York. An exerpt : The first question we ask our clients is “what is your goal”. This sets the direction of the project and what to focus on. With every decision in the design and construction of a home or building there are multiple options, so understanding what the owner’s goals are help to drive those decisions. For instance, if an owner wants to be both energy efficient and create a non-toxic interior environment we would choose one type of insulation over another. Other questions a homeowner might look at are: What size home do I really need, and are there rooms that can be multi-functioning? How involved do I want to be in the operation of the home? What are my current energy bills? Read the full interview, Sustainable Building Techniques for your Home
Our article about the Gowanus Field Stations is in the Fall issue of Pratt’s MultipliCITY magazine, dedicated to water. From the article: “Like much of New York City’s littoral edge, the Gowanus is being recast as the new “next” neighborhood, a site of real estate speculation and development, including expanded access to the waterfront. But a question we must ask is who is gaining access – and who is losing it? While this kind of transformation has become so familiar as to feel almost inevitable, the conditions and mechanisms of change, and the local qualities of each neighborhood are distinct. How might a project propose access that does not radically rewrite an area, but rather suggests a more tactical and precise insertion?.”
In addition, the issue features the article “Managing Stormwater in Red Hook” on our summer 2014 Green Infrastructure Studio by Chelsea Kelly, a student in the class.
Check out Elliott’s contribution to the November roundtable hosted by the excellent website The Nature of Cities. This question was “How can art (in all its forms), exhibits, installations and provocations be a better catalyst to raise awareness, support and momentum for urban nature and green spaces?” The very short synopsis: It is clear that knowledge and awareness alone do not serve as sufficient catalysts for change, art must embrace collaboration, embodied participation, and the mysterious.
Gita and Elliott went to New Orleans for the US Green Building Conference and to check out some of the green infrastructure strategies that have been installed since Katrina. Highlights of the trip included hearing David Waggonner talk about New Orleans’ Urban Water Plan, getting a tour of Grow Dat Youth Farm, and the bounty of fish at the Paul Greenberg panel.
Elliott and Theo Barbagianis, PE led a walking tour looking at the history of Collect Pond through the lens of the urban backstage as part of City as Living Lab. Collect Pond no longer exists, but we can see its history manifest in subtle and surprising ways in the contemporary city. We also can connect the loss of Collect Pond to a number of pressing issues we continue to contend today with in relation to infrastructure and water. We will be giving the tour again in the summer – dates to be posted once we have them.
We are excited to be working with the Urban Green Council to develop GPRO Homes, a part of the larger GPRO suite of green building educational materials. In October we held a focus group workshop bringing together dozens of general contractors with a wide range of expertise and green building interest to deeper understand the state of the construction industry, the obstacles to expanding a green portfolio and the challenges in the marketplace. These results will lead to a foundation for the GPRO Homes curriculum. Many thanks to all the GCs that participated, and to Urban Future Lab for hosting.
With Jennifer Monson, dancer and executive director of iLAND, Elliott presented at the Humanities Without Walls symposium at the University of Chicago. Looking at issues of cross-disciplinary collaboration, they drew from 10 years of iLAND residencies, which give time for movement artists and scientists to explore new hybrid methods for understanding urban ecologies. And this is what makes the collaborations that iLAND supports quite different, that is seeing collaboration as not a means to an end, but an explicit topic in and of itself. It’s an experiment. Collaborations of this type challenge us to develop more complex processes to match the complexity in the issues and questions of the research.
On September 21st, thread collective joined the global event, the People’s Climate March to show solidarity with 400,000 other people speaking out around the issues concerning climate change that are having deep direct impats worldwide. It was an awe-inspring event, and we walked away with an even deeper committment to the work that we are already engaged in.
thread collective was asked by the Red Hook Coalition to create an identity for Red Hook’s Emergency Readiness Plan. The first of it’s kind, the plan was developed by the community of Red Hook, for the community of Red Hook, and provides residents a single guide in preparation for and immediate recovery from future emergencies. thread collective led a team of planners and branding experts including Tatjana Gall and Chris Rice to design branding, graphics, and printed materials that will be sent to all 11,000 Red Hook Residents to prepare for future events. For more info visit www.readyredhook.org
Through August thread will be hosting an open house the last Tuesday of each month from 6-8pm. Join us to bask in the heat after the long winter, and to see the green roof become more lush each month, and watch the trained homing pigeons fly.
thread collective is open this weekend as part of the Bushwick Open Studios (BOS) – a three-day arts and culture festival, hosted annually by the great volunteer organization Arts in Bushwick (AiB). Now in its eighth year, this celebration of Bushwick’s neighborhood’s vibrant community and local art scene is free and open to the public. Come visit thread Friday evening, 5-6pm and Saturday+Sunday, 1pm to 6pm, to see the works of Sara Eichner, Tom Krueger, Jens Veneman, Andres Toros, and Josh Lutz. You can find more info on the event in The New York Times Magazine article.
Elliott is one of four curators for Movement Research’s spring festival, fallow time. The title comes from a short essay she wrote last fall advocating for a more expansive role for the imagination in planning: Yes, “chance favors the prepared mind”, but in addition to the preparation, the mind must be open to chance. Chance [and the imagination to find meaning in chance] requires time that is fallow; time that is neither “productive” nor distracted. The festival examines both urban ecologies and artistic production in contemporary society. Inviting the multiple meanings of sustainability to rub against a range of creative practices, the festival will enact scenarios for thriving in our increasingly unpredictable environment.
Gita Nandan, Co-Chair of the NY Rising Red Hook Committee for the Community Reconstruction Program and Danelle Johnson, Committee Member, attended the final Conference in Albany, NY. While there, they presented two of Red Hook’s resiliency projects at the conference, which were very well received. Speaking to hundreds of attendees, Gita and Danelle shared Red Hook’s unique challenges and strengths, highlighting innovative approaches to improving the resiliency of the NYCHA Red Hook Houses. The two projects presented showcase energy independence for the public housing : the first is a pilot project for solar powered common stairwell lighting, the second is a micro-grid with a feasibility study as phase-1. Their presentation is in Part 2 of the conference videos here.
With the first phase of the NY Rising Community Reconstruction Program coming to an end, the Red Hook Planning Committee has published its final plan : Final Red Hook NYRCR Community Reconstruction Plan, You can find more information on the planning process, documentation, resources : http://redhookcrp.wordpress.
Elliott, with Mary Miss, Eve Mosher, and Franco Montalto, will be facilitating an interactive engagement looking NYC’s watershed – and the relief map of that watershed- at the Queens Museum on May 18th from 2.30-4.30. The event is part of the Open Engagement conference, which is free and looks amazing : Open Engagement is an international conference that sets out to explore various perspectives on art and social practice, and expand the dialogue around socially engaged art making.
SVA ID Senior Thesis is exihibited this week at the Art Director’s Club. An exhibition of works by BFA Interior Design students that represents a wide range of projects and interests, from the design of a seedbank exchange in South Korea to a music venue in Asbury Park on the Jersey Shore, to an urban food center in the West Village, to a sleep therapy center in Midtown. Each project tackles the challenges of integrating conceptual thinking with programmatic layout, design and interior detailing to create an inspiring new place. C0-Curated by Anthony Lee and Gita Nandan.