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Welcome to the BSA’s Placemaking Network! We are dedicated to interdisciplinary dialogue and education about an integrated public realm. Programs include monthly seminars and project-based initiatives on the subject of Placemaking. Presentations by noted speakers and discussions focus on what makes public spaces successful. We examine how architects, landscape designers, urban planners, artists and public officials work together to create great public places, to turn space into place.

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Committee Co-chairs
Christina Lanzl PhD /
Robert Tullis AIA / 

The Placemaking Network is part of the Urban Design Commission.

Upcoming Events

October 22, 2018 | 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

The HUB ON CAUSEWAY: Placemaking on hallowed ground

Gensler has designed and planned the now-under-construction 1.87 million sf vertical mixed-use HUB ON CAUSEWAY project around public activation and placemaking, focused on the 60-foot wide 200-foot-long, 120-foot tall retail gallery dubbed “Champions Row.” It directly connects North Station and T.D. Garden to Causeway Street and gives office tenants and hotel guests front-row seats to the action as commuters and fans pass through. Come hear JF Finn AIA, Gensler’s mixed-use Studio Director, talk about the placemaking considerations that they grappled with during the design of this important Boston development. JF will present the project and discuss the location and configuration of the glass-covered central piazza at its heart, the circulation routes through it, the surrounding uses, the location of entries and exits to the upper level uses that will help pulse office and residential folks into the spaces and onto the sidewalks, the associated complexity with core locations and parking, and all the bells and whistles (TV screens, sound systems, integration with TD Garden, etc.) that are designed to make THE HUB ON CAUSEWAY a happening place.

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Join us on Monday, October 22 at 6pm for The Hub on Causeway: Dynamic Placemaking on Hallowed Ground. Gensler has ...
Wendell Joseph, Neighborhood Planner in the Community Development Department of the City of Cambridge, and Michael Monestime...
Join us on May 21 at 6pm as we shine a spotlight on Beyond Walls, a placemaking project turned nonprofit. Originally, a...
On April 23 at 6pm, architect, author and researcher Ann Sussman AIA will talk about her ongoing research on how...
At our March 26, 6pm seminar Joanne Alinsky Linowes, Principal of the Linowes Executive Development Institute, will...
The Placemaking Manifesto is now part of the ongoing placemaking dialogue in the press. Read our Letter to the Editor...
Join us on Febuary 26 at 6pm at BSA Space: Gediminas Urbonas of the MIT Program in Art, Culture, and Technology,...
Much placemaking activity currently occurs in gentrifying neighborhoods and there is great debate about whether these...
Issued by Christina Lanzl, Rob Tullis and Anne-Catrin Schultz Celebrating 10 Years of the BSA/AIA Placemaking Network...

Past Events

June 25, 2018 | 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM
Placemaking in Cambridge: How Cities and Local Business Communities Can Work Together Wendell Joseph, Neighborhood Planner in the Community...
May 21, 2018 | 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM
Beyond Walls: Placemaking in Lynn, Massachusetts Join us as we shine a spotlight on Beyond Walls, a placemaking project turn nonprofit. Originally, a...
April 23, 2018 | 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM

Eye-Tracking Architecture: Insights from Biometrics on Walkability, Lingerability, Human Happiness

Ann Sussman AIA, an architect, author and researcher, will introduce participants to her ongoing research on how buildings influence people emotionally. Biometric tools, like eye tracking, which follows eye movements we don't consciously control, are widely used in advertising and product design today. What happens when we apply the technology to architecture? This talk reviews findings from recent pilot-studies showing how people look at architecture, revealing hidden behaviors that are key to successful placemaking. We will see how 'fixations' or attachments our eyes make without conscious effort direct our behavior around buildings, even influencing our mood and anxiety levels.

For those who qualify, 1.5 LU/HSWs are available.

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March 26, 2018 | 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM
Placemaking in Action: Hints for Success in a Controversial Community Meeting At our March 26, 6pm seminar Joanne Alinsky Linowes, Principal of the...
February 26, 2018 | 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM

Public Space? Lost and Found

In 2014, Gediminas Urbonas chaired an MIT symposium entitled Public Space? Lost and Found and recently co-edited a book of the same title (SA+P Press; MIT Press, 2017). Both symposium and book brought together artists, planners, theorists, and art historians in an examination of the complex interrelations between the creation and uses of public space and the roles that public art plays therein. Urbonas will speak about the definitions of public space and the tools, tactics, and consequences of reclaiming it through architecture and art. He will cite projects that challenge or support ideas of cultural identity, documenting and analyzing public spaces from several locations and cultures in recent history.

Gediminas Urbonas is an artist, educator and co-founder (with Nomeda Urbonas) of Urbonas Studio, an interdisciplinary research practice that facilitates exchange amongst diverse nodes of knowledge production and artistic practice in pursuit of projects that transform civic spaces and collective imaginaries. In collaboration with experts from different cultural and professional fields, these projects develop practice-based research models, merging a variety of materials and techniques from new media, urbanism, social science and ecology.
Urbonas’ work has been exhibited at the São Paulo, Berlin, Moscow, Lyon, and Gwangju Biennales; at the Manifesta and Documenta exhibitions; and in solo shows at the Venice Biennale and the MACBA in Barcelona. Nomeda and Gediminas have been awarded a number of grants and awards, including the Lithuanian National Prize (2007), the honorable mention for the Lithuanian national pavilion at the Venice Biennale (2007), Best International Artist at the Gwangju Biennale (2006). They were also nominated for the 2012 Nam June Paik Award. Gediminas is Associate Professor and Director of the MIT Program in Art, Culture and Technology in the School of Architecture and Planning.

For those who qualify, 1.5 LUs are available.

Go to event page.

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