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Mitchell Silver | Principal of Urban Planning, McAdams

In this rebroadcast-with-an-update, Mitchell Silver, now Principal of Urban Planning at McAdams and formerly NYC Commissioner of Parks, explores the lasting impact of work-from-home and the recovery of our urban fabric post-pandemic.

In this week’s rebroadcast, I brought Mitchell back to revisit our original podcast episode together from two years ago. When we chatted in April of 2021, we were contemplating coming out of the COVID restrictions. He was then the Commissioner of Parks and Recreation in New York City so we discussed the topic with a New York focus. Highlights of this discussion included bringing greater equity to the city’s investment in its parks, particularly in neighborhoods of color, the challenges brought by COVID to New York’s public places, the lasting principles of urban planning, and Mitchells storied career.

Mitchell is an award-winning planner and his international reputation and leadership accolades for his contributions to the urban planning profession are many. A few honors he has received lately include being selected to Planetizen’s list of the 100 Most Influential Urbanists in the world, being named one of the top 100 City Innovators in the world by UBM Future Cities, and tapped as one of the top international thought leaders of the built environment by the Urban Times.

In our added introductory conversation, he provides his perspective on Ed Glaeser and Carlo Ratti’s New York Times article “26 Empire State Buildings Could Fit Into New York’s Empty Office Space. That’s a Sign.” This fresh take offers the framework for our initial discussion, which is becoming especially pertinent and is worth revisiting as we reimagine our downtowns. Mitchell’s wisdom from 35 years as a thought leader of city planning offers a new lens with which to weave our vision for urban areas.


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