Chana and Matt Present at ACSA Conference

March 20, 2024
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Chana Haouzi and Matthew Okazaki presented our project, A Library Free to All, at the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture Conference in Vancouver. We were one of four presenters who discussed participatory practice and social impact design. Discussion was moderated by Suzanne Lettieri, Assistant Professor at Cornell Univeristy.

APB Published in Chicago Architect Magazine

January 17, 2024
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Our project, “A Library Free to All,” was featured in the Winter 2023 Chicago Architect Magazine for winning the Roberta Feldman Architecture for Social Justice Honor Award. The award recognizes projects that are “guided by the conviction that access to high-quality architecture is not a privilege, it is a human right.” Read the magazine here.

Chicago Architecture Biennial Book Discussion

November 3, 2023
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Chana Haouzi joins John McMorrough and Lucia Allais for a book discussion at the Chicago Thompson Center, hosted by Chicago Architecture Biennial and Columbia University’s Buell Center. The conversation responded to the Buell Center’s most recent publication, “Architecture and Land in and Out of the Americas,” — a book that offers a different view of the relationship between architecture and land and challenges our assumption that land precedes architecture. Read more about the project here.

“A Library Free To All” Wins Two AIA Chicago Awards on Design Night 

October 27, 2023
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Our project A Library Free To All brings home two awards at the AIA Chicago Design Night! The project received the Roberta Feldman Architecture for Social Justice Honor Award and an Architecture Design Excellence Merit Citation for our innovative and community-centered design for the Boston Public Library. The Roberta Feldman Award is especially meaningful to us because it is “guided by the conviction that access to high-quality architecture is not a privilege; it is a human right.” Grateful to the American Institute of Architects in Chicago and the AIA Chicago Foundation for this honor. 

Association for Community Design Conference Panel Discussion 

October 24, 2023
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The Association for Community Design Conference, which took place at the DuSable Black History Museum and Education Center in Chicago, gathered community design advocates from across the country. In its 46th installment, the conference was titled WAYS and invited participants to reimagine how we can challenge and change design practice to advance racial justice and build equity in our communities. APB principal Chana Haouzi joined Nootan Bharani and Chandra Christmas-Rouse to discuss how they challenge the status quo of design teaching and studio culture. The panel discussion was moderated by Traci Wile and titled “Creating a Demand for Better: Teaching in Place, Chicago.” Read more about it here.

Architects’ Roundtable: Designing Sukkahs to Amplify Civic Life

October 15, 2023
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Architecture for Public Benefit and Trent Fredrickson Architecture participate in the Chicago Sukkah Design Festival Roundtable to discuss our design for the Lawndale Christian Community Center and Mishkan Chicago. Moderated by Nekita Thomas, the conversation invited the public to hear more about our participatory design process. Learn more about the festival here. Photo by the talented Norvell Tolbert Photography.

Architecture for Public Benefit Lecture at University of Illinois Chicago

August 30, 2023
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As part of the University of Illinois Chicago’s School of Architecture We@UIC Series, Chana presented the work and philosophy of Architecture for Public Benefit. How can we make good design accessible to everyone? This question guides our practice and drives our creative work. Chana discussed our business model and recent projects, outlining how our benefit corporation was founded and how we find innovative ways to leverage design as a solution to improve lives. 

Lecture at Harvard Graduate School of Design

July 18, 2023
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Chana and Matt presented our work at Harvard University Graduate School of Design Design Discovery. The talk was titled “Design, with” and captured Architecture for Public Benefit’s approach to design. "Design, with" means that design is collaborative and open-ended. It is an invitation that requires the support and consensus of others to flourish. It thrives in creative environments, with partners that listen carefully and design collaboratively. It encourages us to question what is known and push the limits of what is possible– to use creativity and care to respond to the needs of communities and their environment. To infuse beauty and function into every solution and to realize that we have the agency to make a tangible difference in the built environment and to the people that engage with it every day.

Architecture for Public Benefit is participating in Chicago’s Sukkah Design Festival

May 11, 2023
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APB was selected to participate in this year's Chicago Sukkah Design Festival. We are partnered with Mishkan Chicago and Lawndale Community Church and designing a sukkah to support both faith organizations ongoing collaboration and intertwined histories. After the festival, the structure will relocate to Lawndale Legal Center and serve as a memorial honoring the lives of LCLC youth lost of gun violence. Shown above is a Worm's eye view of our sukkah proposal. The project introduces three thickened walls that act as vessels and provide moments of connection, storytelling and remembering. We look forward to bringing the project to life with our design and fabrication partner Trent Fredrickson Architecture and hosts Could Be Architecture and Lawndale Pop-Up Spot.

APB exhibited at Chicago Architecture Center

March 12, 2023
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Our firm was selected to join a talented group of architects to rethink how typical Chicago housing typologies can meet the needs of our time. We partnered with Peter Rose + Partners to reimagine Chicago’s six-flat housing typology into an affordable, sustainable, and scalable system. With over 10,000 vacant lots and neighborhoods that remain underserved and in need of good quality affordable housing, this initiative is a commitment to create homeownership and wealth-building opportunities, improve our urban fabric, and empower communities. The exhibition is on view until March 26, 2023 and the public is invited to leave feedback on the proposed designs.

Chana starts The Life of Buildings studio at the University of Chicago

January 20, 2023
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Chana has developed a new class for the University of Chicago titled the Life of Buildings. The studio examines what happens to a building after it is designed and built. How do particular design decisions influence human experience and behavior? Which parts of the building align with its intended use, and what are surprising outcomes or changes? How do buildings perform, evolve, and adapt over time? These questions aim to provide students with a deeper understanding of the built environment and the series of decisions that shaped them. For our second class, we visited the Chicago Cultural Center, originally the first Chicago Public Library, and students captured their research and observations in a short film.

Vision and Fundraising for YouthBuild Boston’s Designery

November 29, 2022
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We have partnered with YouthBuild Boston to completely reimagine the future of their storefront on Washington St— home to The Designery. YouthBuild's mission is to expose underrepresented youth to the design and construction industry through design programs and construction training. The Designery is a space where young people can design, create, test, prototype, and share their ideas. Our design proposes (1) a new fabrication lab that holds the street corner, (2) an open and flexible gallery and studio space, and a (3) meeting and collaborating room with library and support core. Today is Giving Tuesday. Consider supporting this project and empowering a young generation to shape the built environment and their neighborhoods.

Chana joins a panel discussion hosted by UChicago and Smart Museum 

October 19, 2022
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University of Chicago and Smart Museum hosted a panel discussion titled The Life Cycle of Materials. Chana joined Dan Peterman, Alex Enarson, Jack Schroeder, and Luke Joyner as we discussed the future of buildings and materials. This event was part of the Art History Departments’s Architecture Open Studio series which exposes students to ideas and work about the built environment. 

Chana teaches design studio at Illinois Institute of Technology

September 19, 2022
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Chana joins the Illinois Institute of Technology College of Architecture’s faculty to teach a core design studio. The class introduces students to foundational architectural principles and encourages creative exploration between critical thought and physical product. Here the students pin up their second project where they used pencil, paper, and xacto knife to explore field conditions and their geometric constructions.

Matthew is Selected as Densho’s 2022 Artist-in-Residence

June 7, 2022
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Matthew Okazaki has been selected as Densho’s Artist-in-Residence this year. For his project, he will use photographs and records found in the Densho archives to study the World War II American concentration camps through a series of scale models. In addition to his role as APB principal, Matt has an interdisciplinary art practice that explores themes of longing and belonging. Here is an excerpt from his proposal: “My grandfather spent his youth in the American concentration camps of World War II. They stayed in horse stables and converted army barracks. He says that there was so much dust. In the middle of the war, in the middle of the desert, surrounded by barbed wire fences and outposts and armed guards, it was a place-between, where the conflict of identity was made manifest. A placeless place for those inexplicably extracted from their former lives, from their former selves. Barren architectures in …

Pitch Night at Sasaki Foundation

May 25, 2022
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Architecture for Public Benefit, along with our incredible nonprofit partner, Aaron's Presents, was selected as a finalist for the Sasaki Foundation Design Grant. We had a great time sharing our proposal for a youth-led design process that advocates for the passion, talent, and vision of young people. By introducing them as full partners in the design process, we not only enrich the discussion and create a more diverse set of solutions, but we also empower these future leaders with the skills and strategies to shape their own cities. Thanks to the Sasaki Foundation for hosting such a fun event and congratulations to all the finalists!

APB is Awarded the Boston Public Library Outdoor Spaces Project

May 10, 2022
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The Boston Public Library and Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics have selected Architecture for Public Benefit to design the outdoor space of nine library branches. We are excited to be working with our partners Design4Equity, YouthBuild Boston, and A05 Studio. Our interdisciplinary team will be collaborating with patrons, community members, and librarians to reimagine how the public engages with the library. This project is an opportunity to bring the library, its services, and its spaces beyond the institution's traditional boundaries and introduce new ways of meeting the library’s critical mission: “Free to All”.

Boston Society for Architecture interviews Chana

April 7, 2022
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The Boston Society for Architecture interviewed Chana along with 4 other recipients of the AIA Young Architects Award. Chana discussed our critical mission at APB to serve a broad public and shared what she’s working on now and what’s next. Read the article here. “Architecture for Public Benefit introduces a new model of practice in order to reach a broader public. We partner with nonprofits and mission-driven organizations and solve their unique challenges by thinking creatively about the funding and fee structure. There is also incredible alignment throughout the design process because the projects are all founded on and fueled by a shared vision.”

Chana Wins AIA Young Architects Award

March 17, 2022
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Architecture for Public Benefit’s founder, Chana Haouzi AIA, has been awarded a 2022 AIA Young Architects Award! The award is given by the American Institute of Architects and it recognizes individuals who have demonstrated exceptional leadership and made significant contributions to the architecture profession early in their careers. "As a licensed architect, Chana Haouzi, AIA, is driven by a sense of responsibility, recognizing that good design holds the potential to address many of society’s issues, transform communities, and change lives. Throughout her career, Haouzi has distinguished herself as a versatile and immensely talented architect as well as a leader with a clear and distinct vision. Her work spans the public and private sectors and, through innovative design solutions, bolsters the built environment and advances architectural education." Read more about the award here.

Northeastern promotes Chana to Associate Teaching Professor of Design for Environmental Justice and Public Good in the Built Environment

July 14, 2021
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Chana joined Northeastern University’s faculty in 2014 and has taught a wide range of the core curriculum, including foundational design, representation, and urban design studios. In her new role, Chana will serve as Associate Teaching Professor of Design for Environmental Justice and Public Good in the Built Environment. Chana looks forward to delivering innovative courses that promote socially engaged and inclusive design practices and leverage the students' incredible enthusiasm to make a difference in their community.