4 Nov 2020

Online Event, Various

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The Public Commons has become a term used for shared and unencumbered access to air, oceans, and wildlife as well as to social creations such as libraries, scientific research and public spaces. The first half of 2020 witnessed unimaginable change to our collective existence brought about by the perils of a global health crisis followed by a repositioning of our focus on to centuries of systemic racial injustice. Both the COVID-19 pandemic and the horrific and brutal death of George Floyd have become catalysts for a re-examination of our public space and the institutions that govern it.

While the Civil Rights Act outlawed discrimination based on race, gender, religion or nationality, bias is still embedded in public spaces, urban life and the built environment. Cities must respond to these failings and promote new modes of design, implementation and social maintenance in order to truly reflect the people of our nation.

The Philadelphia Chapter of the Council for Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat together with the Weitzman School of Design at the University of Pennsylvania has assembled a panel of thought leaders for a symposium to address the history, future and current events surrounding PUBLIC COMMON SPACE.

The discussion will be moderated by CTBUH Philadelphia Board Member Scott Erdy, Principal, Erdy McHenry Architecture, and will include presentations and discussion by Ian Smith, Architect, Ian Smith Design Group; Carolee Fink, Principal, MSquared and former Chief of Staff, NYC Deputy Mayor's Housing Office; Tommy Joshua Caison, Founder & Directing Manager, North Philly Peace Park; and Devin Liddell, Chief Futurist, Teague Consulting. Opening remarks will be provided by CTBUH Philadelphia Chapter Chair Kirk Harman, Founder & Principal, The Harman Group, and Hina Jamelle, Director, Urban Housing Studio, University of Pennsylvania Weitzman School of Design.

Note, attendees will be eligible to receive 1 hour of continuing education credit. To register for this event, you will be prompted to create a login for

2:00 PM - 3:00 PM EST
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM PST
7:00 PM - 8:00 PM GMT/UTC


The Harman Group

Erdy McHenry Architecture

BALA Engineers

Turner Construction Company

Jaros, Baum & Bolles

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