New York City Mayor Eric Adams today appointed Sreoshy Banerjea as executive director of the New York City Public Design Commission (PDC).
Banerjea brings an expertise in design with a deep commitment to public service, exemplified by her work on major community development and resiliency projects, including Downtown Far Rockaway, Broadway Junction, Manhattan Waterfront Greenway, and the Financial District and Seaport Climate Resilience Master Plan, among others.
She will replace outgoing PDC Executive Director Keri Butler, who has served at PDC for more than a decade.
“I am thrilled that a model public servant like Sreoshy Banerjea is taking the reins at the Public Design Commission,” said Mayor Adams. “New Yorkers deserve public spaces that reflect the best of our city and the values we hold dear, and Sreoshy has a proven track record of translating those both into art and space. I also want to thank Keri Butler for her many years of service to PDC and to the city, and I look forward to continuing to ‘Get Stuff Done’ with our new leadership.”
“Sreoshy will bring a wealth of design knowledge, complex project experience, and entrepreneurial spirit to her new role as executive director of the Public Design Commissioner,” said Deputy Mayor for Economic and Workforce Development Maria Torres-Springer. “I thank outgoing executive director Keri Butler for her tremendous service to the city’s work in improving PDC processes to enhance the public realm by ensuring quality design in public projects throughout New York City, and I look forward to working with Sreoshy in this next chapter of the Public Design Commission.”
“I am humbled and honored to accept the role of executive director at PDC and to carry the baton forward in stewardship of our beloved public realm,” said incoming PDC Executive Director Sreoshy Banerjea. “I look forward to championing and advocating for equitable, safe, and resilient design values to ensure our shared city is vibrant across all boroughs, while being sensitive to the multitude of factors that architects juggle to actualize their projects. As I inherit a talented and visionary team, we will work together to uphold design excellence, while positioning PDC as a platform for innovating and disrupting status quos in the design field. I look forward to working across our partner agencies and in collaboration with professional organizations to increase dialogue and diversity in the profession and encourage a new pipeline of design talent to shape the urban fabric of New York City.”
“Sreoshy is among the most civic-minded and innovative design professionals,” said Geeta Mehta, founder and president, Asia Initiatives, and adjunct professor of urban design, Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation. “She understands the role that an inclusive built environment and infrastructure can play in building the social capital of communities, empowering New Yorkers in all walks of life. Her deep listening skills will be very important as she takes on the role of leading the New York City Public Design Commission.”
“The selection of associate architect Sreoshy Banerjea to head the New York City Public Design Commission brings new talent, initiative, and social sensitivity to this historic commission,” said Richard Dattner, FAIA, founding principal, Dattner Architects. “Under her leadership, PDC’s long tradition of encouraging the highest level of civic design will be expanded to meet the urban challenges of our city, and our times.”
“Personally, and on behalf of AIA New York, I could not be more thrilled to hear the news that Sreoshy Banerjea, Assoc. AIA, will serve as executive director of New York City’s Public Design Commission,” said Benjamin Prosky Assoc. AIA, executive director, American Institute of Architecture (AIA) New York.“A recipient of the 2021 AIA New York ‘Service to the City’ award, Sreoshy has earned the respect of the architectural community through her thoughtful and impactful work at the New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC). Having demonstrated her commitment to design excellence through her collaboration with fellow AIA members on the city’s Open Restaurants program, among other initiatives, I am confident that she will approach her work at the PDC with rigor, raising the standards for public investment in design projects throughout New York City.”
“We are delighted that Sreoshy will be the new executive director of the Public Design Commission,” said Daniel McPhee, executive director, Urban Design Forum. “Sreoshy has used her time in government to champion design excellence, advocate for inclusive public spaces, and provide meaningful opportunities for new and emerging practices to shape the city. Under her leadership, we should expect an even safer, healthier, and more resilient public realm.”
About Sreoshy Banerjea
Sreoshy Banerjea is a former vice president of urban design for NYCEDC, where she has — for more than six years — been responsible for establishing and leading the Urban Design Unit housed within the Planning Division.
She conducted urban design analysis, and architectural and public realm studies, as well as advised internal staff and consultant teams on a variety of projects.
She has helped shape consultants’ visions for the renovation of EDC assets and large-scale master plans and vision plans, including Sunnyside Yard, Broadway Junction, Manhattan Waterfront Greenway, Downtown Far Rockaway, Inwood, and Financial District and Seaport Climate Resilience Masterplan.
At the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, Banerjea founded Design Corps, and formulated partnerships with AIA and NYCxDesign to create a network of 100 volunteer architects that assisted over 70 restaurants in design related to needs that had arisen during COVID-19.
Banerjea is a former Forefront fellow of the Urban Design Forum, as well as the 2021 winner of the AIANY chapter’s ‘Service to the City’ award, which recognizes those who have made tangible design contributions or participated in impactful collaborations with designers to make New York City a better place to live.
Prior to her public sector experience, Banerjea worked as an architectural associate with Rafael Vinoly and Dattner Architects on multiple award-winning civic and institutional projects.
Banerjea received a Bachelor of Architecture from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and a Master’s degree in urban design from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
She is also the founder of the Creative RFP Toolkit, a course that guides emerging and diverse architects to tell powerful stories in their proposals. Banerjea also serves as a board member for Architexx.
Banerjea will report to Deputy Mayor for Economic and Workforce Development Maria Torres-Springer.
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