Updating New York City's Urban Design Principles

Anita Laremont, newly appointed director of the New York Department of City Planning and chair of the City Planning Commission, elaborates on the city's priorities for the public realm and the role for good urban design to enhance quality of life.

2 minute read

November 4, 2021, 5:00 AM PDT

By Clare Letmon

Twenty months into the COVID-19 pandemic and with less than three months left in the term of outgoing Mayor Bill De Blasio, New York City is updating its "Urban Design Principles," which guide local decision making on neighborhood zoning and development. The Planning Report spoke to Anita Laremont, newly appointed director of the New York Department of City Planning and chair of the City Planning Commission, on the city’s priorities for the public realm and the role for good urban design moving ahead. Laremont also describes her charge to further address the city's affordability problems across all five boroughs. 

“We believe our priorities will continue to be the new mayor's priorities in dealing with the challenging issue of not having enough affordable housing for all of our citizens.”

Laremont specifically also speaks to the inequalities in public space that exists in New York that have been exacerbated by the pandemic. 

"COVID-19 also showed us the divide that we have in the city. There are BIPOC communities and communities with lower incomes that have very poor-quality public realms that we need to focus on more closely. People who live in the South Bronx need to have the same kind of opportunities to be outdoors and in quality settings in ways that they didn't before."

Read more about how New York plans to adapt and grow given the pressures of the Covid-19 pandemic, a changing economy, and a housing crisis below. 

Tuesday, November 2, 2021 in The Planning Report

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