Van Alen Report
Projects in this series
Van Alen Report gathers expert perspectives on subjects that are redefining society’s relationship to cities.
Van Alen Report (VAR) is a broad, sweeping examination of the present and things to come, intended to catalyze fresh thinking among those who shape cities—designers, planners, policymakers—as well as anyone eager to learn more about how the future of the built environment will impact their minds, bodies, and everyday lives. An interdisciplinary digest that explores how people and communities can successfully adapt to change, the report gathers expert perspectives on subjects that are redefining society’s relationship to cities and the built environment on a local, national, and global scale.
VAR 20 | Healthy Brains, Healthy Cities
Cognitive and behavioral science research is revealing more and more about how cities impact people physically, emotionally, and neurologically. With more people expected to live in cities than ever before, this growing body of knowledge is most welcome. However, knowledge alone is not enough to produce better, healthier cities. Just as new technologies and scientific approaches have provided fresh insight into how cities impact the mind and body, it will take new thinking among city-makers to harness that information and re-imagine the role that design can play in promoting mental health and well-being.
VAR 19 | America’s Infrastrucutre
For the first Van Alen Report in twelve years, we examine the dire condition of America’s infrastructure. Experts from various disciplines participate in a sweeping exploration of how leaders may repair the nation’s infrastructure in ways that support better and more just outcomes for all.
VAR 18 | Civic Exchange: Competitions and Dialogues
VAR 18 looks at recreation, featuring projects on a competition for a new information system for Lower Manhattan, a competition for a recreational pavilion in Coney Island’s amusement park, and an exhibition about the accessibility of recreation and leisure across cultures and economic levels.
VAR 17 | Variable City: Taking it to the Streets
VAR 17 centers on the Variable City project, which looks at Fox Square from multiple perspectives and interdisciplinary methods to emphasize art’s role in city design.
VAR 16 | OPEN: New Designs for Public Space
Van Alen Report 16 is a special edition focusing on the exhibition OPEN: Design for Public Space. To view a hard copy at Van Alen’s offices, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
VAR 15 | The /Swiss/ Section
VAR 15 explores the exhibition, The/Swiss/Section, on designing and building in Switzerland, while paying attention to signature cultural projects and spaces of everyday life.
VAR 14 | Information Exchange: How Cities Renew, Rebuild, and Remember
VAR 14 is a special edition on the exhibition “Renewing, Rebuilding, Remembering” about how cities change after disaster, which features 7 cities: New York, Beirut, Berlin, Kobe, Manchester, Oklahoma City, San Fransisco, and Sarajevo. To view a hard copy at Van Alen’s offices, email email@example.com.
VAR 13 | Take the R Train: Riding the Rails from Downtown to Long Island City
VAR 13 follows the R train, focusing on new projects along the way such as SHoP’s Rector Street Bridge and MoMA QNS as a reflection on culture centers and the arts.
VAR 12 | Urban Design Now
VAR 12 asks, “What is Urban Design?” and features the exhibition, “Renewing, Rebuilding, Remember” on seven cities that have rebuilt after disaster.
VAR 11 | Designing Queens Plaza: A Design Ideas Competition
VAR 11 looks at the design ideas competition for Queens Plaza, which considered the space as representative of both change and continuity in the city.
VAR 10 | Recreating the City
In the wake of 9/11, VAR 10 explores how to rebuild after tragedy in an interview with Natalie Fizer and Mabel O. Wilson on Monuments and Memorials, and features a piece on BAM and cultural districts by Barrett Feldman.
VAR 9 | Architecture + Water
VAR 9 features the exhibition “Architecture + Water,” an interview with Lewis.Tsurumaki.Lewis and a letter from Nicholas de Monchaux on the design of Olympic cities.
VAR 8 | Park=City: Designing Downsview Park, Toronto
VAR 8 explores urban park design through a competition to design Toronto’s Downsview Park. The winning design, Tree City, is a combination of park lands that connect to the city around it while remaining a natural site.
VAR 7 | TKTS2K: An Icon at the Crossroads
VAR 7 focuses on the design competition “TKTS2K: An Icon at the Crossroads” to design the iconic ticket booth in Times Square.
VAR 6 | Digital Dilemma: Where Is the ‘Public’ in e-topia?
VAR 6 asks, “Is public space dead?” and features TKTS2K in Times Square, Megadesign vs. Other Urbanisms and Pier 40 Park.
VAR 5 | Community Property: What Drives Public Design?
VAR 5 asks “How can a city get the best public architecture while fully engaging the community in the process?” The edition features the “Pier Pressure: Design By Collage” competition, Community Design and other issues in public design.
VAR 4 | Industrial Evolution: Transforming the Urban Waterfront
VAR 4 explores the transfer of New York City’s waterfront to the public realm and what that means for recreation, entertainment, and tourism.
VAR 3 | Health and the City
VAR 3 looks at topics from the “In Recovery” forum like Public Health/Public Space, Defensible Space and Environmental Justice, in addition to Green Skyscrapers, Governors Island, Culture Exchange Competition Dinkeloo Fellowship, and River Project Exhibition.
VAR 2 | Real Downtown/Virtual Downtown
VAR 2 covers the Fall 1996 Program Schedule about Heath and the City and Public Private Property, as well as the 1996 Paris Prize Competition, the Future of Work and the Future of Downtown Forums.
The very first Van Alen Report defines the issues and programs that make up the 1996 Projects in Public Architecture: Real Downtown/Virtual Downtown, Public-Private Property and Health and the City.