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The Bloomberg Administration has transformed NYC in many ways that make it a better place to live.

As someone who lives and works in Manhattan, my life has been enriched because the city is a more bike-friendly place, allowing me to cycle to work once or twice a week — usually on weekends when the traffic is a bit lighter. And the installation of plazas at key points has allowed me to stretch out and sip coffee and take in the street scene and worship the sun. My personal favorite spot is right at the intersection of Broadway and Fifth Avenue at 23rd Street in Manhattan, near the Flatiron building with an outdoor cafe called Flatiron Green, where I can park my bike and gather my thoughts before going into the office for a long day. In short, I am calmer, fitter, tanner, more caffeinated, and generally happier living and working in the city because of these improvements. Thanks Mayor Mike, we’ll miss you!

citi-bike-station-bikes

Interestingly, the Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt, National Museum of Design has gotten the message. The institution is honoring NYC Transportation Commission Janette Sadik-Khan (shown below) as Design Patron of the National Design Awards. Its an honorary award that has been held by some heavy hitters over the years. Comments Caroline Baumann, Director of the Museum, “Using design and urban planning as the central driver over her six year tenure, Janette has transformed how New Yorkers move around the city, from the innovative Citi Bike program to the creation of pedestrian plazas. I am delighted to recognize the Commissioner for her design stewardship and leadership, which will benefit the city for decades to come.”

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 The National Design Awards were established in 2000 to promote design as a vital humanistic tool in shaping the world. The awards are accompanied each year by a variety of public education programs, including special events, panel discussions and workshops during National Design Week, this year to be held October 12 – 20.

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MalariaPoster

One of the most positive trends sweeping the professional graphic design world, and the world of design education, is a commitment to use the power of design for the public good. A superb and inspiring example comes from Rule29 and its head Justin Ahrens, who recently tackled two issues at once: helping a slum in Kenya overcome the threat of malaria and helping develop future design leaders.

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cigar box bango

They say one man’s trash is another’s treasure. What about another man’s masterpiece?

That’s the challenge posed to the UX team at Sears Holdings Corp. for their second annual art exhibition. The 250+ team of designers, writers, developers, web architects, researchers, and others were invited to up-cycle artistically. Essentially, upcycling is the process of converting waste materials or useless products into new materials, products of better quality, better environmental value or into works of art.

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