About the GbD Project
Gowanus by Design is a community-based urban design advocacy. GbD proposes a new strategy going forward for the development of the Gowanus area, showcasing different options for the canal and including the many voices of canal stakeholders. GbD will develop projects that speculate upon the potential for what the canal can be and will track the coordination of clean-up and development efforts between the many city agencies whose decisions impact those of us who live and work near the canal.
Our aspiration with GbD is to bring to bear the same analytical and research tools that we use for our professional clients, and to use them to the benefit of our community and our neighbors.
About the concept
The idea for the Gowanus Urban Design Community Advocacy has its roots in the Van Alen Institute's 2001 exhibition, Public by Design. Curator Raymond Gastil, then director of the Institute and author of Beyond the Edge on New York City’s re-emerging waterfront, saw the post-industrial waterfront not only as a transition from private to public ownership, but as one from the industries of shipping and manufacturing to those of recreation and tourism. In this regard Gastil saw the reclamation and remediation of waterfront space as a necessary partnership between government, private enterprise and the adjacent communities.