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AIDS Memorial Park, NYC

The design competition site is the gateway to New York City's West Village, and blocks from the Chelsea neighborhood, a triangle of land bounded by Seventh Avenue, West 12th Street and Greenwich Avenue.

New York City AIDS Memorial Park: "Submit a design for a neighborhood park, create a living memorial" design competition.
Submission deadline: Jan. 21, 2012 23:59 EST
Registration fee: $50
Ist Prize: $5,000
Runner-up: $2,000

The goal of the AIDS Memorial Park competition is to produce a design for a park, memorial and learning center in honor of New York City's 100,000 plus men, women and children who have died from AIDS, and to commemorate the efforts of the caregivers and activists who responded to that medical crisis.

The triangle of land for the park and memorial was the location of the Loew's Sheridan movie theater until the late 1970s. It was demolished to make room for an expansion of St. Vincent's Hospital. St. Vincent's was the health care facility most associated with the AIDS crisis in New York City. The hospital went bankrupt in April 2010. The entire former medical campus is being redeveloped into a new luxury residential development.

As part of that redevelopment, this site is being redesigned as new public open space. For many years, the community has expressed a desire for the site to be a public park. The West Village, like most of Lower Manhattan, is starved for public, green open places. AIDS Memorial Park is an initiative of urban planners Christopher Tepper and Paul Kelterborn.

"We envision AIDS Memorial Park as a vital community park that integrates green public space with a living memorial," said Keith Fox, chairman of AIDS Memorial Park's executive committee. "We believe our design process will engage the best architects, and landscape and urban designers to propose inspirational, imaginative and thoughtful alternative solutions for the park and underground space."

The jury chairman is Michael Arad, the architect of the National September 11 Memorial. The jury comprises Kurt Andersen, novelist/journalist; Barry Bergdoll, professor of Architectural History, Columbia University and chief curator of architecture and design at the Museum of Modern Art, NYC; Elizabeth Diller, professor of Architecture, Princeton University and founding partner of Diller Scofidio + Renfro; Robert Hammond, co-founder and executive director of Friends of the High Line; Dr. Marjorie Hill, CEO of Gay Men's Health Crisis; Bill Jones, artistic director, choreographer and dancer; Richard Meier, managing partner, Richard Meier & Partners Architects; Ken Smith, Landscape Architect; and Suzanne Stephens, deputy editor of Architectural Record.

The coalition aims for completion of the park by World AIDS Day on December 1, 2014.

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