Each month in our magazine, we like to end every issue with a call to action by highlighting how others in the industry are using design to positively affect local communities. So when AIA New York ended this year’s AIA Conference on Architecture with a Community Service Day, we immediately took note.
Partnering with Non-Profits
The three-day conference took place from June 21-23, closing on Saturday with a day of service. Local firms and brands, including architecture firm MBB (Murphy Burnham & Buttrick) partnered with six non-profits throughout three boroughs in New York City to work on special projects benefiting those in need. Not just a way to give back, the service projects encouraged and inspired architects to connect with the city and its inhabitants.
Over the years, MBB – a 30-person firm in Manhattan– has sought to infuse meaning into its work and demonstrate positive societal impact. On the last day of AIA’18, MBB employees volunteered their time and design expertise in a partnership with Edible Schoolyard NYC, a nonprofit working with public schools to educate and empower students to make healthy food choices.
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Ergonomic Flooring Installation Remedy
The architect-volunteers tackled "multiple garden projects at PS 007 in Harlem to install infrastructure that’s needed to help educate students on the connections between food, health, and the environment,” says MBB architect Nyssa Sherazee, AIA, LEED AP.
According the MBB’s Instagram, projects included the design and placement of an A-frame bean tunnel pergola and an art wall made of colorful acrylic mosaic tiles. When beans are planted at the base of the tunnel, the tendrils will grow upwards along the frame and the beans themselves will hang in the interior, allowing children to easily pick them, and the new art wall provides a pop of color and design to what was once an ordinary chain link fence. Both students and MBB employees look forward to watching the garden grow.