PROJECT: Sidewalk sheds are an omnipresent feature throughout NYC. These utilitarian scaffolding tunnels cover the sidewalk, protecting pedestrians from falling building debris. Softwalks diversifies the single function of sidewalk sheds by incorporating elements such as a simple seat, counter, planter, screen, and lighting covers.
ABOUT: Howard Chambers is committed to the belief that major urban metropolises should be designed with people as the primary user. She is driven by the realization that despite this ideal—cars, construction and infrastructure have taken precedence over human needs. A recent graduate from the Transdisciplinary Design program at Parsons the New School for Design, Howard focused on rethinking and reimagining outdated infrastructure throughout New York City for the past few years. Her interdisciplinary approach includes connecting urban development while preserving artistic culture and unique sense of place by creating a team dynamic that fuses individuals of different disciplines. She focused on making connections between the city's D.O.T., developers, business improvement districts, architects, city planners, lighting designers, urban designers, and event coordinators to help evaluate archaic systems and define experimental projects that yield necessary and measurable results.
Bland Hoke believes design is a process of creating consequence. His education in Transdisciplinary Design at Parsons the New School for Design provided opportunities to research complex problems and design appropriate solutions using untraditional tools and methods. Examples include the design of community engagement tools to promote collective ownership of the creative process and addressing the lifecycle of temporary interventions. The results manifest in large-scale installations, permanent commissions and functional amenities. Most of his work is focused on neglected public spaces and outdated infrastructure, drawing on a background in public art practice and administration. Bland's goal is to work with others to develop projects that are simple, obvious and desirable - but least expected.