It has been almost eight years since we opened the Center of Architecture. In that time, the Center has become an internationally-recognized resource for architecture and design. The Chapter has also grown to be a respected voice in local, national, and international conversations on design.
The growth of the Center, and with that the AIA New York Chapter, would not have been possible without the efforts of many dedicated leaders. Tonight, we are starting a new tradition: the Past Presidents Medal. As this is the first year, we have some catching up to do. [Medals have been made for all living past presidents of the AIA New York Chapter, Castillo gave medals to those in attendance. See full list here [pdf]] Thank you to each one of you for all that you’ve done for the Chapter. Giving you this medal is but a small token of our appreciation.
I also want to thank the Chapter and Center for Architecture Foundation staff for their dedication and hard work in making the Center so successful this year, especially AIANY Managing Director Cynthia Kracauer, AIA, LEED AP, and the Foundation’s Executive Director Jaime Endreny.
President’s Theme: Design for a Change
Each year the Chapter’s president identifies a theme that expands the goals of the Chapter and the Center. The 2011 theme — Design for A Change — focuses on how architects can lead the way into a more sustainable and responsible urban future. It is our responsibility to design with social, environmental, and economic impacts in mind. During my presidency the Chapter is presenting a number of programs that address this initiative. Teddy Cruz was here in May to discuss innovative housing models. We also co-organized the South-North Conference, part of our ongoing sustainable urbanization collaboration with the United Nations.
In addition, we are developing an exhibition entitled “Buildings=Energy,” which will educate the public and design professionals about measures that improve building performance and the environment. It will open this fall, during our new month-long design celebration, Archtober.
The Chapter continues to provide expert testimony and position statements on issues of importance to the profession at the New York City Council, City Planning Commission, Department of Buildings, and the Landmarks Preservation Commission, as well as at state agencies, public authorities, and elected officials. Recent topics have included the New York University Core Project, Moynihan Station Development, Manufacturers Hanover Trust Interior Landmarking, the city-wide Car Share and Key Terms Clarification Zoning Text Amendments, Riverside Center, and the Department of Buildings rules on the benchmarking of energy and water use of buildings and compliance with the New York City Energy Conservation Code.