Under the Elevated 2013–

The first phase developed design and policy recommendations, in partnership with the NYC Department of Transportation, to transform the neglected public space under the city's elevated bridges, highways, subway and rail lines, into valuable community assets. The partnership continues in a second phase to launch several pilots. The first pilot in Sunset Park will be a collaboration with Industry City.

  1. Phase I
  2. Phase II
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Project Outputs

We produced two print publications as part of this project and were honored to present our Boogie Down Booth at the 2014 Jane Jacobs Forum. 

Under the Elevated: Experimentation Before Implementation

August 2016

Under the Elevated publication

June 2015

Boogie Down Booth at Jane Jacobs Forum

October 2014

Life Along the Elevated publication

July 2014

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Under the Elevated: Experimentation Before Implementation

Video: Municipal Arts Society

Boogie Down Booth at Jane Jacobs Forum

Designated as a "Project that Ignites" by the Municipal Arts Society, Design Trust Fellow Chat Travieso presented the Boogie Down Booth at the 2014 Jane Jacobs Forum, alongside Kerry McLean from WHEDco and Neil Gagliardi from NYC DOT. 

Project Activities

In addition to all the research, analysis, and policy work conducted by the Fellows team, a major activity was the creation of two pop-up installations to test various design strategies, one below the Manhattan Bridge in Chinatown and one below the 2/5 subway line in the Bronx. 

Activity Photos (179)

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Photo: Sam Lahoz

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The press conference beginning at Pier i for the launch of "Under the Elevated: Reclaiming Space, Connecting Communities"

Photo: Megan Canning

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NYC DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg and Design Trust Executive Director Susan Chin

Photo: Sam Lahoz

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Two passionate urbanists discussing the Under the Elevated project while looking at our two publications. 

Photo: Megan Canning

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NYC DOT Director of Urban Design Neil Gagliardi shares his enthusiasm for the book with Design Trust Director of Programs Rosamond Fletcher

Photo: Megan Canning

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Design Trust Board member Eric Rothman looking at the Under the Elevated book for the first time. 

Photo: Sam Lahoz

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Participatory Design Fellow Chat Travieso pointing to one of the installations he designed in the Under the Elevated book. 

Photo: Sam Lahoz

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Participatory Design Fellow Chat Travieso and Urban Design Fellow Susannah Drake holding the Under the Elevated book at the book launch event. 

Photo: Megan Canning

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The growing crowd at Pier i Cafe for the Under the Elevated book launch. 

Photo: Sam Lahoz

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Two cyclists stop by to check out the books at our launch event. 

Photo: Megan Canning

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Guests checking in for our Under the Elevated book launch on June 18, 2015. 

Photo: Sam Lahoz

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Members of the Under the Elevated project team: Susan Chin, Susannah Drake, Neil Gagliardi, Wendy Feuer, Polly Trottenberg. 

Photo: Megan Canning

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Our two publications on display, Life Along the Elevated and Under the Elevated, at the official book launch event on June 18, 2015. 

Photo: Megan Canning

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Design Trust intern Dana Wall and program associate Joseph Huennekens working the event check-in table. 

Photo: Sam Lahoz

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Pier i Cafe, the site for our Under the Elevated book launch event, sits below the elevated Miller Highway on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. 

Photo: Sam Lahoz

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Urban Design Fellow Susannah Drake speaking to a journalist about her work on the project. 

Photo: Sam Lahoz

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NYC DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg being interviewed by Fox 5 News about Under the Elevated

Photo: Sam Lahoz

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NYC DOT Director of Urban Design Neil Gagliardi speaking to attendees at the Under the Elevated launch event. 

Photo: Sam Lahoz

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NYC DOT Director of Urban Design Neil Gagliardi speaking to attendees at the Under the Elevated launch event. 

Photo: Sam Lahoz

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The crowd listening to the public remarks from NYC DOT and Design Trust about the Under the Elevated project. 

Photo: Sam Lahoz

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NYC DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg presenting the Under the Elevated book to the press at our official launch event on June 18, 2015. 

Photo: Sam Lahoz

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Design Trust Executive Director Susan Chin speaking about our Under the Elevated project and resulting study at the official book launch event on June 18, 2015. 

Photo: Ozgur Gungor

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Design Trust Fellow Chat Travieso speaking about his design concept for the Boogie Down Booth pop-up installation he created as part of our Under the Elevated project.  

Photo: Ozgur Gungor

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Moderator James Russell with one of Design Trust Fellow Krisanne Johnson's photos of life along the elevated. 

Photo: Ozgur Gungor

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Design Trust Fellow Susannah Drake talking about one of the ideas for how to utilize the space below elevated infrastructure – create small, modular studios for artists. 

Photo: Ozgur Gungor

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The diverse audience in attendance at the panel on May 15, 2015 at the Cooper Union. 

Photo: Ozgur Gungor

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The panel with an image of the final project publication, Under the Elevated: Reclaiming Space, Connecting Communities. 

Photo: Ozgur Gungor

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The panel at the Cooper Union with a photo of salsa dancing in East Harlem by Photo Urbanism Fellow Krisanne Johnson for Life Along the Elevated. 

Photo: Ozgur Gungor

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Journalist and former Design Trust Fellow James S. Russell opens the panel discussion at the Cooper Union on May 15, 2015 for the citywide NYCxDesign festival. 

Photo: Ozgur Gungor

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Design Trust Board of Director Ann Harakawa introduces the program about our Under the Elevated project at the Cooper Union on May 15, 2015 for the citywide NYCxDesign festival. 

Photo: Ozgur Gungor

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Neil Gagliardi, Chat Travieso, Rosamond Fletcher, and Susannah Drake presenting the Under the Elevated project at the Cooper Union on May 15, 2015 for the citywide NYCxDesign festival. 

Photo: William Michael Fredericks

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Design Trust executive director Susan Chin speaking at the Boogie Down Booth press conference on July 23, 2014. 

Photo: William Michael Fredericks

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Design Trust executive director Susan Chin speaking to the press about the goals of our Under the Elevated project. 

Photo: William Michael Fredericks

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Connie Moran, the Bronx Borough Commissioner for the NYC Department of Transportation, speaking about their role on our Under the Elevated project. 

Photo: William Michael Hendricks

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Circa '95 performs at the Boogie Down Booth 

Photo: William Michael Fredericks

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Representatives from BMHC, Design Trust, NYC Department of Transportation and the Department of Small Business Services at the Boogie Down Booth press conference on July 23, 2014. 

Photo: William Michael Fredericks

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Design Trust Fellow Chat Travieso sitting on the Boogie Down Booth in the Bronx

Photo: William Michael Fredericks

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Design Trust Fellow Chat Travieso being interviewed by NY Daily News' Pete Barrett about the Boogie Down Booth.

Photo: Ozgur Gungor

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Bronx Rising! dancers performing around the Boogie Down Booth, our temporary installation underneath the elevated subway tracks in the Bronx. 

Photo: Ozgur Gungor

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Bronx Rising! dancers performing at the Boogie Down Booth, our temporary installation underneath the elevated subway tracks in the Bronx. 

Photo: Ozgur Gungor

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Under the Elevated project installation "The Boogie Down Booth" below the elevated subway tracks in the Bronx.

Photo: Ozgur Gungor

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Looking down at our temporary installation, "The Boogie Down Booth,"  from the elevated 2,5 subway station in the Bronx. 

Photo: Ozgur Gungor

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Design Trust Fellow Neil Donnelly, WHEDco's Kerry McLean, Circa '95 members Reph Star and Patty Dukes, and Design Trust Fellow Chat Travieso at the Boogie Down Booth. 

Photo: Ozgur Gungor

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Design Trust Fellow Chat Travieso talking about the Under the Elevated project at the launch of the Boogie Down Booth. 

Photo: Ozgur Gungor

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BronxRising! dancers leaving the Boogie Down Booth.

Photo: Ozgur Gungor

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BronxRising! dancers leaving the Boogie Down Booth 

Photo: Ozgur Gungor

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A detail of one of the panels on the Boogie Down Booth 

Photo: Ozgur Gungor 

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A detail of the Boogie Down Booth

Photo: Ozgur Gungor 

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The beginning of the Bronx Rising! event at the Boogie Down Booth. 

Photo: Ozgur Gungor

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Design Trust Fellow Chat Travieso interviews Circa '95 at the Boogie Down Booth.

Photo: Ozgur Gungor

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Under the Elevated project installation "The Boogie Down Booth"

Photo: Caroline Bauer 

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Looking down from the subway station at the Boogie Down Booth being installed at the corner of Southern Boulevard and Freeman Street in the Bronx. 

Photo: Caroline Bauer

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The Boogie Down Booth being installed at the corner of Southern Boulevard and Freeman Street in the Bronx. 

Photo: Caroline Bauer 

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The Boogie Down Booth being installed at the corner of Southern Boulevard and Freeman Street in the Bronx. 

Photo: Caroline Bauer 

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The Boogie Down Booth being installed at the corner of Southern Boulevard and Freeman Street in the Bronx. 

Photo: Caroline Bauer 

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The Boogie Down Booth being installed at the corner of Southern Boulevard and Freeman Street in the Bronx. 

Photo: Caroline Bauer 

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The Boogie Down Booth being installed at the corner of Southern Boulevard and Freeman Street in the Bronx. 

Photo: Caroline Bauer

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Fellow Chat Travieso painting the seats of The Boogie Down Booth as it's being installed at the corner of Southern Boulevard and Freeman Street in the Bronx. 

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Putting the finishing touches on The Boogie Down Booth as it's being installed at the corner of Southern Boulevard and Freeman Street in the Bronx. 

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The Under the Elevated temporary installation under the Manhattan Bridge 

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The Under the Elevated temporary installation under the Manhattan Bridge attracts a lot of attention from the neighborhood 

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Seating fabrication for the Division Street installation in Chinatown

Photo: Steve Olken

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Signage fabrication for the Division Street installation in Chinatown

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Images from an Under the Elevated installation on Division Street in Chinatown

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Images from an Under the Elevated installation on Division Street in Chinatown

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Images from an Under the Elevated installation on Division Street in Chinatown

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Images from an Under the Elevated installation on Division Street in Chinatown

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Images from an Under the Elevated installation on Division Street in Chinatown

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Images from an Under the Elevated installation on Division Street in Chinatown

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Images from an Under the Elevated installation on Division Street in Chinatown

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Images from an Under the Elevated installation on Division Street in Chinatown

Chat Travieso

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A sketch for underneath Southern Boulevard

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Students drawing their visions for what they want to see under the George Washington Bridge in High Bridge Park.

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Students drawing their visions for what they want to see under the George Washington Bridge in High Bridge Park.

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Students drawing their visions for what they want to see under the George Washington Bridge in High Bridge Park.

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Participatory Design Fellow Chat Travieso leads a design workshop with students from the Cycling Smarts after-school program at George Washington High School

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Students drawing their visions for what they want to see under the George Washington Bridge in High Bridge Park.

Photo: Caroline Bauer 

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Photo: Charles McKinney 

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Photo: Charles McKinney

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Photo: Charles McKinney

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Photo: Charles McKinney

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Photo: Charles McKinney 

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Photo: Charles McKinney

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Photo: Charles McKinney

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Photo: Charles McKinney

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Photo: Caroline Bauer

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Photo: Caroline Bauer

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Photo: Caroline Bauer 

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Photo: Caroline Bauer 

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Photo: Caroline Bauer 

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Under the Elevated on Livonia Avenue

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A collage of potential sites for Under the Elevated

Photo: Caroline Bauer 

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Photo: Caroline Bauer 

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Photo: Caroline Bauer 

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Photo: Caroline Bauer

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Photo: Caroline Bauer

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Diagrams explaining how pilot sites were selected for inclusion in Under the Elevated

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Diagrams explaining how pilot sites were selected for inclusion in Under the Elevated

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Diagrams explaining how pilot sites were selected for inclusion in Under the Elevated

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Examples of preliminary research for Under the Elevated

Map: Linda Pollack

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Examples of preliminary research for Under the Elevated

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Examples of preliminary research for Under the Elevated

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Diagrams explaining how pilot sites were selected for inclusion in Under the Elevated

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Diagrams explaining how pilot sites were selected for inclusion in Under the Elevated

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Diagrams explaining how pilot sites were selected for inclusion in Under the Elevated

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Examples of preliminary research for Under the Elevated

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Some findings from an Under the Elevated studio at Cornell University

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Some findings from an Under the Elevated studio at Cornell University

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Some findings from an Under the Elevated studio at Cornell University

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Some findings from an Under the Elevated studio at Cornell University

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Students drawing their visions for what they want to see under the George Washington Bridge in High Bridge Park.

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A student presents her ideas for the space under the George Washington Bridge in High Bridge Park.

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Students drawing their visions for what they want to see under the George Washington Bridge in High Bridge Park.

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Students drawing their visions for what they want to see under the George Washington Bridge in High Bridge Park.

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Students drawing their visions for what they want to see under the George Washington Bridge in High Bridge Park.

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The class discusses the opportunities and challenges of the site underneath the George Washington Bridge. 

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Students drawing their visions for what they want to see under the George Washington Bridge in High Bridge Park.

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Some findings from an Under the Elevated studio at Cornell University

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Some findings from an Under the Elevated studio at Cornell University

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