“These are powerful examples of the importance of creating great public urban space to augment the quality of life of a community’s residents.”
Randall K. Rowe,
The Urban Open Space Award celebrates and promotes vibrant, successful urban open spaces by annually recognizing and rewarding an outstanding example of a public destination that has enriched and revitalized its surrounding community.
About the Award
The award was created through the generosity of Amanda M. Burden, New York City Planning Commissioner and 2009 laureate of the ULI J. C. Nichols Prize for Visionaries in Urban Development. In 2011 the Kresge Foundation, MetLife Foundation, and the ULI Foundation joined forces to continue the ULI Urban Open Space Award through 2014.
The winner of the ULI Urban Open Space Award receives a commemorative plaque and is recognized in an awards ceremony held in conjunction with ULI’s Fall Meeting. A $10,000 cash prize is awarded to the individual or organization most responsible for the creation of the winning open space project. Further recognition includes press releases and announcements in Urban Land magazine and on ULI.org.
Eligible projects must:
- Be located in an urbanized area in North America;
- Have been open to the public at least one year and no more than 15 years;
- Be predominantly outdoors and inviting to the public;
- Be a lively gathering space, providing abundant and varied seating, sun and shade, trees and plantings with attractions and features that offer many different ways for visitors to enjoy the space;
- Be used intensively on a daily basis, and act as a destination for a broad spectrum of users throughout the year;
- Have a positive economic impact on its surroundings;
- Promote physical, social, and economic health of the larger community; and
- Provide lessons, strategies, and techniques that can be used or adapted in other communities.
Members of the jury serve evaluating the ULI Urban Open Space Award and the ULI Awards for excellence, applying the same rigorous procedure for each these specific awards. Jury members are selected internationally to achieve regional balance and represent several facets of development expertise, including finance, architecture, land planning and development, public affairs, design, and professional services.More
2012 Winner: Railroad Park — Birmingham, Alabama
Railroad Park in Birmingham, Alabama occupies the historical seam created by a rail viaduct that bisects downtown. The new topography integrates the train experience with a variety of new open space activities, which help organize and stimulate growth in the southern part of downtown, while promoting connections north of the railroad.
Urban Open Space Awards Winners and Finalists, 2010-2012 (Full Listing)
View ULI Urban Open Space Award in a larger map