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︎Year 5

Julia Cabanas

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Harlem as School

New York, USA


New York City’s school system is amongst the most segregated in the United States. Many of the city’s public schools are overcrowded, rundown, and underfunded, resulting in the continued marginalisation of students – many of whom are from Black and Latinx communities. In Central Harlem, the issue of school segregation is inextricably tied to gentrification and territoriality. As public schools are closed down and properties earmarked by developers all over the neighbourhood, the sense of community ownership over Harlem has started to decline.

This project rethinks the school typology by dispersing learning facilities across several urban blocks, in turn challenging Manhattan’s strict territoriality by transforming the school into a shared neighbourhood space. The proposal is a flagship elementary-to-high school campus for Harlem that ties multi-purpose community, cultural and education venues together. Overlaps between school and city are encouraged as both students and the wider community use the site.
Contact:



Julia Cabanas

︎Year 5

juliacabanas@outlook.com