Architects have an important role in making the local environment cleaner and healthier for the people who spend time in their buildings.

Metropolis’s director of design innovation, Susan S. Szenasy, led a talk at CookFox’s New York office on architecture, data, advocacy, and health. Susan S. Szenasy (far left) moderates a discussion titled “Design to Stimulate the Mind: Supporting Wellness in the Heart of the City” with panelists (left to right) Rick Cook, founding partner, CookFox Architects; Dr. Maida Galvez, associate professor, Departments of Environmental Medicine and Public Health & Pediatrics, Mount Sinai; and Adam Lutz, real estate project executive for Google New York. Courtesy Margaret Ferrec Faced with a challenge as important as environmental justice, architects must seek out and engage in a dialogue with potential collaborators from other disciplines. But what form might this exchange take? On March 1 Metropolis’s director of design innovation, Susan S. Szenasy, led a talk at CookFox’s New York office that teased out answers to this question. The conversation gathered experts in the seemingly disparate fields of public health, commercial real estate, and sustainable architecture, and it quickly became clear just how deeply the goals of these disciplines are interwoven. After all, “chronic health conditions are rooted in built spaces,” as Dr. Maida Galvez, associate professor of environmental medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, put it to the audience. Galvez delivered an empowering message that set the tone for the rest of the discussion. “The tools are in your hands,” she said, suggesting that practical design solutions can be found to address problems such as low-level lead exposure and toxic stress. These health hazards are often detected only when it’s too late, and for that reason, preventive strategies should be the shared aim of architects and their collaborators in health-related fields. The talk was hosted at CookFox’s New York office. Courtesy Margaret Ferrec Following this thread, Galvez agreed with Adam Lutz, real […]

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