Gateways to Chinatown

NYC Chinatown; Courtesy of Van Alen Institute

NYC Chinatown; Courtesy of Van Alen Institute

Gateways to Chinatown
New York, NY

2017-2020 (Developed as part of Van Alen Institute employment)

Gateways to Chinatown is an initiative seeking innovative proposals to plan, design, and construct a symbolic and functional landmark at the nexus of Manhattan’s Chinatown and the southern entrance to Little Italy’s historic Mulberry and Mott Streets.

The project will provide a new marker for Chinatown, Little Italy, and the surrounding neighborhoods in Lower Manhattan to engender pride of place, foster connectivity and cultural and social identity, and stimulate economic development. Straddling art and architecture, symbolism and function, the new structure and public space aims to become a vibrant place of exchange at the center of one of New York City’s most dynamic and historically rich areas.

The design team selection process included questions like: “How can the site serve as a “gateway,” responding to tradition as well as adapting to ever-changing cultural and generational demographics and technology?” and “How can the gateway connect and bring together existing communities and create new opportunities for both locals and visitors to experience the area in fresh ways?”

Cultural Forecasting

– Intuitive assessments of cultural and institutional context

– Qualitative and quantitative research and context interpretation

– Future scenarios and impact assessment

Institutional and Program Strategies

– Vision and mission strategies from moonshots to incremental change

– Content and program ideas from concepts to implementation

Design Process Development

– Design brief development

– Selection process development

– Jury and Advisory Committee development

– Team structuring (from project managers to capital campaign consultants)

– Team liaison