This event is the first part of a two-part discussion featuring Timothy Beatley, professor of sustainable communities at the University of Virginia, along with Dean Macris, former director of city planning for San Francisco, and Cathy Simon, design principal at Perkins+Will.
David Alumbaugh has made the design of place the focus of his work as a public planner. A senior urban designer with the City of San Francisco Planning Department, Mr. Alumbaugh established the highly regarded Better Neighborhoods Program, which included the Market and Octavia Better Neighborhoods Plan that incorporates the new Octavia Boulevard. He is directing the city's Downtown Neighborhoods Initiative for new high-density residential neighborhoods around San Francisco's central core.
Timothy Beatley is Teresa Heinz Professor of Sustainable Communities, in the Department of Urban and Environmental Planning, School of Architecture at the University of Virginia, where he has taught for more than twenty years. His primary teaching and research interests are in environmental planning and policy, with special emphasis on coastal and natural hazards planning, environmental values and ethics, and biodiversity conservation. He is the author or co-author of more than fifteen books, including: Ethical Land Use (Johns Hopkins University Press, 1994); Habitat Conservation Planning: Endangered Species and Urban Growth (University of Texas Press, 1994), Natural Hazard Mitigation (Island Press, 1999, with David Godschalk and others); and An Introduction to Coastal Zone Management (Island Press, 2002, Second Edition, with David Brower and Anna Schwab).
Dean Macris is the former Planning Director of the City of San Francisco.
Cathy Simon's focus on transformative design is evident at all scales. Larger-scale work is best exemplified by San Francisco's Ferry Building, a once-disused relic reborn as a public marketplace and the site of the nation's most highly-regarded farmer's market, as well as a place of vibrant community. Notable smaller projects include numerous independent K-12 projects including the Urban School, a private high school whose identity and relationship to its neighborhood were revolutionized as a result of its new facility.
Cathy's design philosophy and expertise have made her a natural spokesperson for the burgeoning revitalization of post-industrial waterfronts worldwide. She frequently speaks and teaches on issues of urbanization, revitalization and the ways and means of creating these vibrant places that nurture the growth of community.
Perkins+Will's Cathy Simon shares two examples of how integrating nature into urban landscapes helps foster community and improves quality of life. She highlights Crissy Field, a reclaimed airfield in San Francisco near the Golden Gate Bridge, as well as the "guerilla urbanism" efforts of a few crafty city dwellers who reclaim metered parking spots and turn them into temporary parks.