The Design Trust for Public Space has announced Irina Verona and Lindsay Harkema, two adjunct assistant professors of architecture at Barnard as winners for the Restorative City RFP, an award honoring projects that shape the physical environment of New York City’s shared spaces in a way that makes everyone healthier. To earn the accolade, Verona Carpenter Architects, founded by Verona, worked in collaboration with WIP Collaborative, an independent collective of designers founded by Harkema.
The two firm’s winning project, titled The Neurodiverse City, examines the neurological differences across the city's population and how public spaces do not fit everyone’s physical, neurological, and emotional needs. Their work advocates for inclusive public spaces in the city where everyone, including those with “invisible disabilities” and sensory sensitivities, can find restorative common ground. The project will study existing public spaces, such as playgrounds and pocket parks, and create new design guidelines supporting a range of physical and emotional needs.