This exhibition will invite architects, landscape architects, and urban designers from across the country to join us in envisioning a future East Lansing. From November 2013 to May 2014, each month a new designer will present their past work and ideas as part of a discussion of themes as they relate to East Lansing. This dialogue will continue as the designers develop speculative projects set in East Lansing and culminate in an exhibition of the completed designs. 

Participants will select the themes—and eventually programs and sites—for their projects with the most potential impact as a means of speculating on the long-term future. Visiting the area and beginning their work in sequence, each designer will respond not only to East Lansing as it appears today, but also to the real world projects underway and the designs being developed by preceding participants. By the time of the exhibition, the designs will collectively envision what could occur incrementally over the course of the next few decades. Out of this process will emerge both a speculative vision of a future East Lansing might become, but also the connections between that and the daily decisions negotiated by a community. 

The buildings, places, and spaces of a city manifest not only its historical evolution, but also the current values and future aspirations of its citizens. When acts of design shape and give character to the physical environment of a city, they impact not only how the city is experienced but ultimately the people and businesses that choose to call it home. Although distinct and separate from the many efforts underway to plan and begin building the future East Lansing and greater metropolitan area, East Lansing 2030: Collegeville Re-Envisioned will contribute to the same discussion of what the city is and what it could become.

Follow the projects and participants on our EL2030 Tumblr page

 

About the Participants 

UrbanLab, Chicago IL | Watch UrbanLab's Discussion
Led by Martin Felsen and Sarah Dunn, UrbanLab is an architecture and design firm dedicated primarily to projects that look ahead and try to bring about a more resilient and resourceful tomorrow. With a strong connection to the city of Chicago, UrbanLab’s design work includes a range of projects dealing with water use in the city and establishing connections between the city’s inhabitants and their environment. The firm’s design work is informed by and intertwined with the firm’s research focused on re-conceptualizing the design of buildings and infrastructure to more effectively and sustainably use community assets and natural resources.   

PLY Architecture, Ann Arbor MI | Watch PLY's Discussion
The collaborative studio of Craig Borum, PLY Architecture employs industrial techniques and the logic of material and spatial systems to efficiently produce unique experiential results. Regular collaborators Jen Maigret and Maria Arquero de Alarcon of MAde Studio bring a focus on culturally and environmentally sound design practices to their work with PLY as well as their independent projects. Also collaborating on this project will be David Bieri, Assistant Professor of Urban and Regional Planning at the University of Michigan Taubman College of Architecture & Urban Planning (where the other collaborators also teach). David's research and teaching in urban and real estate economics includes the spatial features of competitiveness and local economic development within the broader economy.

DIGSAU, Philadephia PA | Watch DIGSAU's Discussion
DIGSAU is an award-winning Philadephia-based firm practicing contemporary architecture, urbanism, and environmental design. A studio of generalists, DIGSAU expands on the diverse backgrounds within the firm through partnerships and collaborations to execute innovative projects across a wide range of project types. Since its 2007 founding, the firm has undertaken projects for a diverse group of clients, including an increasing number that extend the partnerships and collaborations across the traditional lines of separation between public and private, university and town, government and corporation. 

LEVENBETTS Studio, New York NY | Watch LEVENBETTS' Discussion 
LEVENBETTS is an award winning New York City based architecture practice. The of­fice was founded by David Leven and Stella Betts in 1997 and focuses on design at all scales including urban design, public architecture, houses and housing, commercial workspaces, exhibitions and furniture. The office employs a variety of methods to ar­rive at innovative solutions within the programs and sites of architecture. Central to our work is architecture that engages its urban and or natural environment.

WXY Studio, New York NY | Watch WXY's Discussion
WXY is an award-winning, studio-based multidisciplinary practice focusing on innovative approaches to public space, structures and cities. WXY's integrated design process involves clients and stakeholders, to coordinate and solve complex design problems, yielding solutions as noteworthy for their intimacy and detail as for their civic dignity and amenity.

Bionic Landscape, San Francisco CA | Watch Bionic's Discussion
Founded in 2007 by Marcel Wilson, Bionic strives to thoughtfully synthesize all the forces at play in a given project and “enable life” through the design of inventive landscape architecture, planning, urban design, and ecology projects at all scales. 

Stoss, Boston MA | Watch Stoss' Discussion
Founded in 2000 by Chris Reed, Stoss, a research and design firm working primarily in the public realm, believes in the productive role of landscape in the making and re-making of cities and social spaces.

Min|Day, San Francisco CA, Omaha NE | Join the conversation on July 10 at 6:30pm 
Founded in 2003 by E.B. Min and Jeff Day, Min|Day explores innovative interventions for a range of clients at a range of scales, coaxing nuance and specificity from the unique opportunities of each site and project.