Posted Wednesday, July 01, 2009 - 3:29 PM

Pratt Center for Sustainable Design Studies to Hold Community “Design Jam” at Pratt Towers

Pratt Institute Center for Sustainable Design Studies (CSDS) and the Pratt Incubator for Sustainable Design Innovation will partner with Pratt Towers housing cooperative to hold a community "design jam" on Saturday, July 11 from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at Pratt Towers located at 333 Lafayette Avenue. Members of the community are invited to brainstorm possible residential uses for 60 square feet of unused space behind the towers that has remained empty for 15 years.

The "design jam" will begin with a 9:30 a.m. presentation by Pratt Towers to the community and participating designers, followed by smaller group brainstorming sessions. The teams will present their ideas to the community for feedback, with further opportunity for refining and solidifying ideas before the day's end. The goal is to design a staged program that can be implemented over a series of years that can also be used to help find funding from city or corporate sponsor.

"We're thinking of it as an inter-generational space that can be enjoyed by all Pratt Towers cooperators," said Deb Johnson, Pratt Academic Director of Sustainability and Director of Pratt's Design Incubator for Sustainable Innovation. "We look forward to hearing what ideas the community has so we can integrate them into the design for the space," she added.

Pratt Towers is a multi-cultural urban community of 326 families who are working to improve their quality of life by revitalizing their outdoor space through an environmentally sustainable, year-round multipurpose area. Those members of Pratt Towers who have been working with the Pratt include Elke Adams, Elliott Chafin, Theresa Chestnut, Marva Denner, Claudia Ghigliotty, Ligia Rivers, and Michael Crawford.

The Pratt Design Incubator for Sustainable Innovation comprises a multi-disciplinary group of design, business, and industry professionals collaborating to promote sustainable and socially responsible innovation. Pratt Academic Director of Sustainability Deb Johnson also heads the Pratt Design Incubator and manages its progress. The "incubees" build businesses developing marketable design concepts that arose during their design studies. The result is a focused, energetic, motivated team that is sharing the process of starting a business. The Incubator has launched eleven businesses since its 2002 inception.