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CityGAP Walks 
Featured by Our Partner
Urban Archive 

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CityGAP alumnae Clara Pitt and Leila Tilin’s A Bite of the Big Apple: A Food Justice Cookbook, is the 2nd entry in FoodTank’s "19 Cookbooks to Brings Food Justice and Sustainability into 2022." Food Tank, the think tank for food, has chosen 19 cookbooks from an array of different authors to guide us through our changing food system. A Bite of the Big Apple was the group project for our program in Spring 2021. 

 

We are so proud of Leila and Clara and of this important work!

CityGAP Fall 2023

Group Projects

Civic Engagement & Mutual Aid- La Morada & the Saavedra Family
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Group Project I: RISE/Shore Corps Underway Project

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CityGAP partnered with the local environmental justice organization the Rockaway Institute for Sustainability and Equity (RISE) Shore Corps students to re-energize a plan called Project Underway. The “Underway” is a 4.5 mile stretch under the elevated A train along the Rockaway Peninsula that is under the jurisdiction of multiple city agencies as well as private developers. The participants began their research with a site-analysis bike ride, choosing specific sites that were opportune for intervention. With support from Leroy Street Studio architects, the participants conducted in-depth site surveys at these important intersections along the underway, collecting data on usage, schematics, adjacent properties, environmental factors, and materials. Participants translated these site surveys into diagrams that illustrated the research, and exhibited them as part of a Community Visioning event at RISE, engaging local stakeholders interested in reclaiming and activating this underutilized space.

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Group Project II: CB4 / DCP Outreach Handbook and One-Pagers Project

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This Fall our cohort partnered with The Department of City Planning’s Civic Engagement Division and Brooklyn Community Board 4 in Bushwick to support CB4’s outreach work. Our participants’ group project included the creation of an outreach toolkit for residents of Bushwick who wish to become more involved in the neighborhood and the Community Board. Bushwick is a neighborhood experiencing rapid change, including the specter of board turnover resulting from NYC’s new board member term limits, and displacement driven by gentrification. Therefore, a main goal of the collaboration was creating a Community Handbook to preserve both cultural and institutional knowledge.

The participants dove deeply into researching Bushwick, exploring its history, culture, economics and architecture through meetings with stakeholders (community board members, community-based organizations, residents), participatory observation, fieldwork, and extensive research at the Municipal Archives and online. The students transformed this research into the outreach toolkit, consisting of a Handbook, a map of resources, and one pagers on Land Use and Zoning, Housing, District Needs and Getting Involved in CB4.

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CityGAP then presented this work to the Civic Engagement Division at the Department of City Planning and  Community Board 4, receiving positive feedback and hearing plans for the practical applications for the toolkit.. These These documents will help preserve institutional knowledge for future community board members and, hopefully, provide a model tool for outreach for other Community Boards across the City.

Individual Projects

At the Feet of Giants: The Community Impact of Architecture

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Green Deserts, Income, and Accessibility in Brooklyn

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Youth and Family Services: Improving Collaboration Between Service Organizations

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It's (Not) The Economy: New York City Politics in the 21st Century

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Chess and NYC: Traveling on the 21st Century Silk Road

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Prelude to New York City: A Composition Encompassing the City

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"Hey I'm Walking Here.. I'm Walking Here": Memories and the Movies

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"Immigrants, We (Want To) Get the Job Done": New York's Immigration Crisis

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The Streets of New York: Exploring the Informal Economy and Streetlife of NYC

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CityGAP Fall 2022

Group Projects

Neighborhood Biographies 
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Public Space Design Project
Civic Engagement & Mutual Aid- La Morada & Brook Park
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Group Project on Equitable Public Space:

Redesigning "Cooper Trapezoid"

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As the capstone of a semester of collaborative learning, the Fall ‘22 participants redesigned two under-used spaces, Cooper Square and Cooper Triangle, to create a new, inclusive public space: “Cooper Trapezoid.” 

 

Following our Public Space Redesign and Design Thinking projects, we conducted research into the diverse and historical area, aiming to create a space that is informed by and responds to its residents.

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We worked with architects at Leroy Street Studio to create renderings, site plans and a model of our proposed redesign. The design unifies the two spaces through an Open Street and by eliminating the fence that separates the public spaces from the sidewalk. Within the now-expanded space, the CityGAP team added private “pockets” through an innovative bench/planter/storage system made of repurposed materials, and designed a stage for recreation and community-led events.

 

Central to the our proposal is programming. We seek to pay homage to the artistic legacy of the East Village, using art as a means of incorporating the community through elements designed by local artists and events such as theater workshops, outdoor education, local vendors, and free yoga classes. We also created interactive QR code stickers to educate visitors on the history of Cooper Triangle and Square, and the vibrant neighborhood.

 

Check out the website the participants created to share their work:

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Individual Projects

NYC Epidemics: Outbreaks Infecting the Big Apple

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New York City: Fashion Capital

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A Discussion-based Curriculum for Public Protest

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Public Housing Preservation Trust Policy Memo

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On Flâneurship: A Psychogeographic Zine by Mitchell

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NYC Through a New Lens - a Website of Photography

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Art, Activism, & AIDS: Iterations of Queer Creation

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Return to Fairyland - Queer Nightlife and Fashion in NYC

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Photos of Fieldwork

La Morada Partnership

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Brook Park Partnership

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South Bronx Unite Partnership

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Teaching at American Dream MS

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Hip Hop Exploration of NYC

Research at Barnard's Zine Archive

CityGAP Fall 2021

Group Project

How can grassroots organizations help NYC to re-emerge more sustainably and equitably?

Partnering with South Bronx Unite, La Morada Mutual Aid Soup Kitchen and Friends of Brook Park

South Bronx Unite Project Work
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Webpage,  please click

Graphic, please click

Video, please click

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Personal Projects
 

Trucks and Trees: An Environmental Justice Curriculum for American Dream Middle School in Mott Haven

Homecoming-
A Collection of Poetry and Personal Reflections on Returning to NYC

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3D Mapping of Sea Level Rise and Flooding in Hunts Point- A Website

Webpage,  please click

Webpage,  please click

How Does Hip Hop Represent NYC and NYC Recognize Hip Hop? An Urban Archive Walk

Webpage,  please click

Babyteeth: A Zine Asking “What Does NYC Look Like As She Re-Emerges?”

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Zine, please click

CityGAP Spring 2022

Group Projects

Rockaway Initiative for Sustainability & Equity (RISE) 
Shore Corps "HPD Site" Partnership
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34th Avenue/ DOT Earth Day
Community Climate Stories
Civic Engagement & Mutual Aid- La Morada & Brook Park
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Group Projects on the Climate Crisis & Urban Resilience

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5-Borough Community Climate Resilience Board Game

 

Drawing on our work with partners in urban resilience, we chose to create a climate resilience board game targeted for middle schoolers. The challenge was making the game informative but fun, addressing real challenges to NYC neighborhoods. We created 40 cards (in English & Spanish) choosing important locations on the pathway through each borough. We developed the game with our partners at the American Dream Middle School in Mott Haven,  hoping that our board game becomes part of an Urban Resilience Unit for NYC middle schools.

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Intersections of Environmental Justice, Emergency Response & Mutual Aid

 

After learning about the effects of extreme weather events in New York City, we set out to learn about community response, exploring questions of equity, safety, and justice. We delved into the literature and interviewed Professor Olúfẹ́mi O. Táíwò to explore the intersections of policing, emergency response, and environmental justice. We shared our findings in a digital primer, concluding that neighborhoods can utilize mutual aid as a form of community empowerment to create alternative disaster response systems.

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Individual Projects

“You Do Need a Weatherman…” Bringing Weather Stations to Underserved Environmental Justice Neighborhoods

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“We’re Tired of Being the City’s Sacrifice:” An Essay on What the Fight Against the Chinatown Mega-Jail Tells Us About the Future of AAPI Organizing

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“On Broadway:” A Video on How a More Inclusive NYC Theater Could Re-Emerge from the Pandemic

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Air Quality and Asthma in the South Bronx: A Resource and Response Website

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Local News, Civic Engagement and News Deserts: A Policy Memo and Op-Ed

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Transit Deserts and Transit Equity: A Policy and Action Website

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Young Woman in the City: A Zine for New New Yorkers

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Photos of Fieldwork

La Morada Partnership

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Brook Park Partnership

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South Bronx Unite Partnership

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Teaching at American Dream MS

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Hip Hop Exploration of NYC

Research at Barnard's Zine Archive

CityGAP Fall 2021

Group Project

How can grassroots organizations help NYC to re-emerge more sustainably and equitably?

Partnering with South Bronx Unite, La Morada Mutual Aid Soup Kitchen and Friends of Brook Park

South Bronx Unite Project Work
Screen Shot 2021-12-22 at 9.04.28 AM.png

Webpage,  please click

Graphic, please click

Video, please click

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Personal Projects
 

Trucks and Trees: An Environmental Justice Curriculum for American Dream Middle School in Mott Haven

Homecoming-
A Collection of Poetry and Personal Reflections on Returning to NYC

Screen Shot 2022-01-08 at 3.21.28 PM.png

3D Mapping of Sea Level Rise and Flooding in Hunts Point- A Website

Webpage,  please click

Webpage,  please click

How Does Hip Hop Represent NYC and NYC Recognize Hip Hop? An Urban Archive Walk

Webpage,  please click

Babyteeth: A Zine Asking “What Does NYC Look Like As She Re-Emerges?”

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Zine, please click

CityGAP Spring 2022

Group Projects

Rockaway Initiative for Sustainability & Equity (RISE) 
Shore Corps "HPD Site" Partnership
Screen Shot 2022-08-31 at 6.53.22 PM.png
34th Avenue/ DOT Earth Day
Community Climate Stories
Civic Engagement & Mutual Aid- La Morada & Brook Park
Screen Shot 2022-09-04 at 6.29.38 PM.png
Screen Shot 2022-08-31 at 6.49.21 PM.png

Group Projects on the Climate Crisis & Urban Resilience

Screen Shot 2022-09-04 at 6.44.13 PM.png

5-Borough Community Climate Resilience Board Game

 

Drawing on our work with partners in urban resilience, we chose to create a climate resilience board game targeted for middle schoolers. The challenge was making the game informative but fun, addressing real challenges to NYC neighborhoods. We created 40 cards (in English & Spanish) choosing important locations on the pathway through each borough. We developed the game with our partners at the American Dream Middle School in Mott Haven,  hoping that our board game becomes part of an Urban Resilience Unit for NYC middle schools.

Screen Shot 2022-09-04 at 6.57.16 PM.png

Intersections of Environmental Justice, Emergency Response & Mutual Aid

 

After learning about the effects of extreme weather events in New York City, we set out to learn about community response, exploring questions of equity, safety, and justice. We delved into the literature and interviewed Professor Olúfẹ́mi O. Táíwò to explore the intersections of policing, emergency response, and environmental justice. We shared our findings in a digital primer, concluding that neighborhoods can utilize mutual aid as a form of community empowerment to create alternative disaster response systems.

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Individual Projects

“You Do Need a Weatherman…” Bringing Weather Stations to Underserved Environmental Justice Neighborhoods

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“We’re Tired of Being the City’s Sacrifice:” An Essay on What the Fight Against the Chinatown Mega-Jail Tells Us About the Future of AAPI Organizing

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“On Broadway:” A Video on How a More Inclusive NYC Theater Could Re-Emerge from the Pandemic

Screen Shot 2022-09-04 at 9.11.17 PM.png

Air Quality and Asthma in the South Bronx: A Resource and Response Website

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Local News, Civic Engagement and News Deserts: A Policy Memo and Op-Ed

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Transit Deserts and Transit Equity: A Policy and Action Website

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Young Woman in the City: A Zine for New New Yorkers

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CityGAP Spring 2021

Group Projects

How Do We Make the NYC Food System More Just, Inclusive and Sustainable?

Food Sustainability Cookbook

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How Do We Re-Occupy our Public Spaces Post-COVID?​ 
Neighborhood Art Scroll Project

Personal Projects

What Are the Origins of Social Protest Music and Art in the Harlem Renaissance?

Walking through Harlem

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CityGAP Fall 2020

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Personal Projects

  • Journeys- A Transportation Podcast 

  • Edgemere- The Abandoned Promised Land

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CityLAB Spring 2021

Art in the Current Moment: Navigating and Driving Change Through Creativity


Question: 
How have the arts in NYC responded/contributed to moments of crisis, challenge and social change? How might art respond to the current moment?

Response:

The pandemic has made us aware of an underlying tension in NYC between isolation and connection. The team studied public art around NYC and began a series of exercises to refine their question and respond through different media. They created an interactive art object and recorded people's interactions with it in spaces around the city. Sit With Me is a moveable art installation addressing the dynamic between isolation and connection in NYC.

Group Project

How Do Restaurants Survive and Thrive under COVID?​-

Restaurants Reimagined Website and

Social Media Campaign

CityLAB Fall 2020

How Do Restaurants Redesign to Survive & Thrive under COVID?

CityLAB spent 3 weeks researching the challenges that restaurants face during the pandemic in NYC.  They came to understand the importance of dining to the city culture and economy, and the challenges that owners, managers and workers face everyday.

Outdoor Dining Design Project

The CityLAB participants worked with architects at LEROY STREET STUDIO  and the Delicious Hospitality Group to design outdoor dining pavilions that would respond to concerns during the pandemic, accommodate the emerging city regulations, and inspire diners to return to an inviting, safe and beautiful dining experience.

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This Just In...

The Leroy Street Studio (LSS) was nominated by the American Institute of Architects (AIA) to present the Spring CityLAB "Restaurants Reimagined/ Curbside Dining Pavilion" project in the AIA's Professional Presentation Program at the Center for Architecture in May 2021. (The LSS presentation begins at the 23:15 minute mark in this Vimeo)

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