Forum Releases Bold Built Environment Agenda for New York City’s Next Leadership

About ↓

(March 18, 2021—New York City) —Urban Design Forum is pleased to announce 21 Visions for 2021, a bold built environment agenda for New York City’s next leadership. Culminating after a year of work, an interdisciplinary group of Forum Fellows advised us on national and international case studies, debated popular policy responses, and found points of agreement on paths forward in New York City.

The 2021 election is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to define a new plan for our city and give every New Yorker a voice in its future. We believe that every New Yorker should have a safe and healthy home, a dignified workplace connected by frequent public transit, and equitable access to well-built and well-maintained libraries, schools, parks and senior centers. Driven by these principles, 21 Visions for 2021 shares creative ideas across seven defining issues affecting New Yorkers.

Navigate the 21 Visions ↓

Complete Neighborhoods:
How can the next mayor plan a fairer future for every neighborhood?

Advisors: Annie Levers, Michael Freedman-Schnapp, Moses Gates, Chris Rice, Marlon Williams, Elena Conte

Design Excellence:
How can the next mayor support excellent design of public infrastructure and buildings in every neighborhood?

Advisors: Koray Duman, Ishita Gaur, Beth Greenberg, Justin Garrett Moore, Jack Robbins, Wes Walker

Community Engagement:
How can the next mayor empower residents to have a more meaningful voice in the future of their neighborhoods?

Advisors: Braden Crooks, Farzana Gandhi, Teresa Gonzalez, Priyanka Jain, Tiasia O’Brien, Andrea Steele

Good Growth:
How can the next mayor welcome new development that broadly benefits a neighborhood?

Advisors: Caroline Harris, Asima Jansveld, Meredith Kane, James Lima, AJ Pires, Laura Wolf-Powers

Right to Housing:
How can the next mayor ensure that every New Yorker has a permanent and healthy home?

Advisors: Eva Neubauer Alligood, Alex Garvin, Bernell Grier, Brian Loughlin, Oksana Mironova, Traci Sanders, Pablo Zevallos

Climate Strategy:
How can the next mayor deploy urban design and community organizing to address climate risk in under-resourced communities?

Advisors: Ibrahim Abdul-Matin, Lee Altman, Sarah Charlop-Powers, Jalisa Gilmore, Jeff Hebert, Elijah Hutchinson, Daphne Lundi, Pallavi Mantha, Byron Stigge

Working Neighborhoods:
How can the next mayor build an equitable economy following the pandemic?

Advisors: Kei Hayashi, Oliver Schaper, Julie Stein, May Yu, Lourdes Zapata, Beatrice Sibblies


How We Worked ↓


Since its initial launch in 2019, the Forum’s Shape Shift series explored challenges and opportunities for the future of design and development in New York City. We gathered experts to study historical planning policies, and spoke with national and international leaders pushing for radical planning reforms in Minneapolis, Los Angeles, and London. 

Throughout 2020, we convened a multiracial and multigenerational cohort of civic leaders to advise us on the future of equitable development and planning. 21 Visions for 2021 serves as both a resource and a call for action for New York City’s 2021 candidates in this defining and historic election.


Contact Us ↓

Share this work using #21VisionsFor2021 and tag us on Instagram @urbandesignforum and on Twitter @UDFNYC.

For questions regarding the ideas in our agenda, please reach out to Guillermo Gomez, For any press inquiries, please reach out to Kima Hibbert,

This program is made possible through the support of our Director’s Circle and Fellows.
Editor: Guillermo Gómez
Editorial Support: Daniel McPhee, Kima Hibbert
Design: Partner & Partners