For Immediate Release (March, 2016):
The Long Island Section of the American Planning Association, NY Metro Chapter, recently marked the twentieth anniversary of the Arthur H. Kunz scholarship fund. The fund was established to memorialize Arthur H. Kunz, a noted Long Island planner who died suddenly in 1993 at the age of 59. The LI Section has released an article commemorating the life of Mr. Kunz and the success of the scholarship fund.
CLICK HERE to download the Article
A sincere thank you to the Long Island Community Foundation and all that have volunteered throughout the years to ensure the success of the scholarship program.
– Sean Sallie, AICP, LI Section Director
Arthur Kunz Memorial Scholarship Program
Each year, the APA Long Island Section provides a scholarship to chosen planning students or young planning professionals, to attend a yearly APA National Conference. Funds for the scholarships are raised in the memory of Arthur Kunz, former Suffolk County Planning Director. The conference itself is an inspiring experience, with lots of learning and networking opportunities. How did they shape the professional paths (or-did they?) of this year’s and previous years’ recipients? The following is a series of reflections, written by this year’s and previous year’s Kunz Scholarship winners.
2016 Scholarship recipients will be honored at the Arthur Kunz Scholarship Breakfast to be held on Friday, May 20th, 2016 from 8:00-12:00pm at The Sustainability Institute at Molloy College in Farmingdale.
The APA Long Island Section is pleased to announce the recipients of the Arthur Kunz Memorial Scholarship for 2016. Congratulations to this year’s recipients: Kevin Luzong, James W. Rigert and Taylor Sneden. Kevin is from Bellport and is currently working as a Project Manager with the Suffolk County Department of Economic Development and Planning. Kevin is looking forward to attending the 2016 APA National Planning Conference and bringing back ideas to better Suffolk County. James is from North Babylon and is currently working as a Transportation Planner for WSP Parsons Brinckerhoff in Manhattan. James is interested in Transit Oriented Development and is excited to gain valuable insights on successful TOD projects around the nation. Taylor is from Huntington Station and is currently pursuing a Masters of Urban Planning from Hunter College. Taylor is also a part-time planning intern with Nelson, Pope & Voorhis in Melville. Taylor is excited to experience and explore a new city and bring back lessons on environmental sustainability to Long Island and the New York metropolitan region.
The scholarship provides $1,500 for each recipient to cover the cost of attending this year’s APA National Conference in Phoenix! The recipients will be formally announced at the Annual Arthur Kunz Memorial Scholarship Breakfast this spring (Date to be announced soon!). The APA Long Island Section Steering Committee would like to take this opportunity to thank all applicants for their interest in the Arthur Kunz Memorial Scholarship.
2015 Scholarship recipients will be honored at the Arthur Kunz Scholarship Breakfast to be held on Friday, May 15th, 2015 from 8:00-10:30am at The Sustainability Institute at Molloy College in Farmingdale.
The APA Long Island Section is pleased to announce the recipients of the Arthur Kunz Memorial Scholarship for 2015. Congratulations to this year’s recipients: Gabrielle Alper, Emily Humes and Megan Porter Gabrielle is from East Islip and is currently working as an associate with Sustainable Long Island located in Farmingdale, NY. Gabrielle is interested in transportation planning and is currently a member of APA’s Transportation Planning Division. Gabrielle is looking forward to attending the 2015 APA National Conference and learning about best practices for civic engagement and technical tools to bolster stakeholder involvement. Emily is from Oceanside and is currently in attending Hunter College in pursuit of a Masters of Urban Planning. Emily is also a part-time assistant planner with the City of Long Beach Department of Economic Development. Emily is particularly interested in resiliency planning and looks forward to gaining valuable insight into pre and post-disaster planning from professionals around the country. Megan is from Long Beach and is currently working as a Planner in the City of Long Beach Department of Economic Development. Meghan is interested in planning for the diversity and affordability of housing, transit-oriented development and resilient infrastructure. Meghan looks forward to gaining valuable insight from practicing planners around the nation to address complex issues such as climate change and building more resilient communities. The scholarship provides $1,500 for each recipient to cover the cost of attending this year’s APA National Conference in Seattle! The recipients will be formally announced at Annual Kunz Memorial Scholarship Breakfast on May 15, 2015 (see above for the Save the Date) The APA Long Island Section Steering Committee would like to take this opportunity to thank all applicants for their interest in the Arthur Kunz Memorial Scholarship and to encourage them to submit an application next year. Once again, congratulations to all recipients!
2013 Scholarship Winners: Andrew Amakawa, Alyxandra Sabatino
Andrew Amakawa “A Reflection on My Chicago APA Conference Experience”
Walking over one of many bascule bridges perched above the Chicago River with a view of some of the most beautiful and architecturally stunning skyscrapers, I got a sense that I was in a city that was not just the birthplace of the skyscraper itself but of modern city planning. I was thrilled to have received the Arthur Kunz Memorial Scholarship in honor of a highly respected former Suffolk County Planning Director which afforded me this unique opportunity to not only attend the 2013 American Planning Association Conference but experience the great city of Chicago.
Venturing further along, I observed a mix of architectural styles both old and new. The world’s oldest skyscrapers bore simple designs with slight gothic features at their peaks. The modern skyscrapers borrowed some of these older elements while attempting bold new designs. I also noticed the smaller historic three-to-four story buildings on various street corners illuminated at night with vibrant colors that provided a sense of the old Chicago yet served the modern city by their converted uses from residential to commercial (Pizzeria Uno), residential to mixed-use (Harry Caray’s), and even concert hall to commercial (Bloomingdale’s).
Upon returning to the Chicago River, I climbed down several flights of stairs and followed a pedestrian pathway along the river toward Great Lake Michigan. At the meeting point of river and lake, I continued my walk along an expansive green trail with some of the most breathtaking views of the Lake and the city skyline.
Following Arthur Kunz’s belief in seeing planning firsthand, I signed up for several Conference mobile workshops to gain a better understanding of how Chicago came to be.
The first mobile workshop took me to Jackson Park, site of the World’s Columbian Exposition of 1893 where a monumental neo-classical city had been featured. While the “White City” stood only for the duration of the fair, it impressed upon the nation and the world that Chicago was fast becoming a world class city and could bring together the best of engineers, architects and craftsmen to plan and implement the design of a utopian city. The “White City” further inspired the City Beautiful Movement and most notably Daniel Burnham’s 1909 Plan of Chicago. The Plan was both an attempt to address the existing development issues of the day and lay out a comprehensive plan for guiding the city’s future sustainable development. The Plan considered all aspects of urban life in the layout of the city to ensure the appropriate balance of uses and to meet the needs of a growing population.
The second mobile workshop was a boat tour of the Chicago River corridor which featured a variety of revitalization projects. The partially completed Riverwalk project, which I traversed on my first day in Chicago, proposes a pedestrian pathway and waterfront along the southern bank of the Chicago River and would provide new recreational and retail uses along the river. Further along, I noticed the adaptive reuse of an old industrial building used by the first mail order company that was being converted for mixed residential and commercial uses. A number of new residential high rises have sprung up to replace previous industrial uses taking advantage of the riverfront view and affording new public amenities including parks and pedestrian paths along the river. These types of projects were of course not part of the original master plan but arose to meet the needs and demands of an evolving city.
The third mobile workshop took me to Riverside, a suburb of Chicago considered to be one of the first planned development communities in the U.S. Designed by Frederick Law Olmsted in 1869, Riverside like Chicago was based on a master plan and emphasized an appropriate balance of development and preservation of the natural scenic environment along the Des Plaines River. Riverside is also considered to be an early model of transit-oriented development with a railroad station and downtown at its center.
My experience in Chicago reaffirmed how master planning can significantly impact and guide the sustainable development of a community, city or county. Just as Chicago addressed its growth related problems by laying out a rational plan for its future, Suffolk County has demonstrated that it can do the same by utilizing similar planning practices of mixed-use, adaptive reuse, transit-oriented development and farmland & open space preservation to name a few. Finally, in meeting other planners from around the country I learned how development issues could vary by location such as historic battlefield preservation in rural Virginia, maintenance of local ski tourism economies near Salt Lake City, and the extension of commuter rail lines from downtown Los Angeles. It was evident that as planners we were striving to achieve the same end result of sustainable development and drawing great inspiration from our time in Chicago.
2012 Scholarship Winners: Michelle Young, Lee Wellington, Tiffany Taylor
Michelle Young:” Here is the story about my experience at the conference and what the scholarship meant to me. The photos I personally took on the tour are all available in one of these two articles: Art Deco downtown and a look at LA’s Modernist Heritage“:
I see my life as a fortuitous set of incidents, pushed on by wonderful friends and mentors. If I had not been from Long Island, with a regular weekend commute to Manhattan for music school, I don’t think I would have developed an interest in urban planning as it relates to city and region. If I hadn’t chosen to work at Abercrombie & Fitch after college, and had not been sent to monitor factory production in La Paz, Bolivia for the company, I would not have re-ignited my interest in cities, but from an international perspective. If I hadn’t attended Columbia University for Urban Planning and met Max Sokol, who reminded me about the deadline for the Arthur C. Kunz Memorial Scholarship, I may have inadvertently missed it.
In the same way, receiving the scholarship has opened up new avenues of exploration. Hearing George Starkie speak at the award breakfast inspired this article I wrote for Untapped New York, in partnership with Gehl Architects (most known for their pedestrianization of Times Square and Herald Square), about what the city of Melbourne can learn from the Farmingdale Downtown Master Plan, and its support of transit-oriented, multi-use development around the rail hub. When I gave my acceptance speech at the breakfast, I spoke about how I would use the scholarship to finally understand Los Angeles better. Following the advice of the late Arthur Kunz, I signed up for several mobile workshops.
I fell in love with Los Angeles. As a result of the conference, I was inspired to create a city spotlight on LA for Untapped Cities, the website I founded. As an urban planner, we’re brainwashed that Los Angeles is “bad” and San Francisco is “good” because of anti-urban sprawl and mass-transit mantras that have taken over ever since planning backpedaled against the car-centric Modernist heritage it had once promulgated. In planning school we learn how the planning profession is still reeling and trying to make sense of its mistakes, so much so that you wonder if they’ll ever get over it.
For the conference, I stayed in downtown LA. I did everything Angelenos told me not to do. The first was to take the metro from the airport (as a good urban planner) which demonstrated to me exactly why I was told not to take it. While waiting at Greenline Station, a friendly airport worker from Guatemala befriended me and asked incredulously why I was taking the metro downtown, suggesting that I should call a friend. When she got off a stop later, she warned me to call 911 if anything happened. At 11:30pm, I was just very very out of place but I kept riding. I don’t think I would have grasped the city as well if I had not taken that first metro ride. I passed Compton, changed at Willowbrook and made my way to Metro Center and Pershing Square, all while getting followed by interesting characters.