In the face of climate change and rising sea levels, we need to do things differently. HUD's Rebuild by Design competition, of which Sasaki is proud to be a part, is a prime example of exactly that.
In a typical competition, there is a client and a project, and firms submit design concepts. One of these concepts is ultimately selected and—if all goes according to plan—implemented. But Rebuild turns this process on its head. We started not with a client or a pre-defined project, but with a problem: How do we make the communities affected by Sandy more resilient?
Working with Rutgers University and Arup, we're responsible for Asbury Park, the Natco Lake District, and an area that includes Seaside Heights, Toms River, and the Berkeley Township. Other teams are developing solutions for neighboring areas in New York and New Jersey. So what is called a competition is not exactly competitive—but rather a collection of smart, qualified professionals dividing and conquering a very pressing problem.
We started not with a client or a pre-defined project, but with a problem: How do we make the communities affected by Sandy more resilient?
At this point, we've developed specific resiliency strategies for our three sites. Today, we're soliciting input to inform the refinement of these strategies. By bringing together voices from the communities, non-profits, and other stakeholders, we will be able to create solutions that will be effective environmentally, socially, and economically.
We're using CrowdGauge to not only gain community input, but also to understand where the geographic tipping point of consensus is. Which is important because our next task in the Rebuild by Design competition is to identify the best client to partner with for implementation. For example, if two adjacent towns concur on a particular issue, we can work at the town level. But if these same adjacent towns disagree, we'd need to work at the next level of government to be effective. Knowing what the community wants is how we are determining who the best partner is.
The CrowdGauge data is still being collected, but we've also held one community meeting at each of our three locations, where we presented the design concepts and then broke out into working groups. Below is some of the input from these meetings, which we will compile with the CrowdGauge results to paint a complete picture of the community's priorities and preferences.
Above are the results of Sasaki's community engagement in the Toms River area. Red tones indicate where the community desires high-impact activities (like motorbiking) ; greens indicate the desire for lower-impact activities (like bird-watching).
An initiative of the Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Task Force, Rebuild by Design is a competition that asks some of the world's most talented design professionals to envision solutions that increase resilience...