The Remaking Cities Institute (RCI) is the urban design research center of the Carnegie Mellon School of Architecture. The RCI conducts international research in place-making, citizen participation planning processes, and sustainable development.
Established in 2006, the RCI expands participatory urban design practices through curriculum development, interdisciplinary urban design research, and cross-disciplinary partnerships. Its mission is to catalyze sustainable urban futures and promote excellence in participatory urban design. It is a key collaborator in Pittsburgh's revitalization and provides a forum for leading urbanists to collaborate around the most significant challenges for cities.
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The heart of the RCI is its research. The RCI improves the quality of life in cities and towns through academic, applied, and action-oriented research into place-making and community redevelopment. With Pittsburgh’s transition from an industry-based economy to a diversified technology and service-based economy, the city now serves as a laboratory for the remaking of post-industrial cities. Through its research, the RCI shares lessons learned in Pittsburgh with post-industrial cities around the world. Research projects range from city visioning initiatives including Johnstown Vision 2025: A Resilience Framework to corridor studies including the ongoing Route 65 Corridor Study, and earlier this decade, the Remaking Cities Congress, which brought together more than 300 urbanists and led to the development of Remaking Post Industrial Cities: Lessons from North America and Europe, edited by former RCI Director Don Carter. More information on the Institute’s earlier research projects is available.
The RCI was conceived by David Lewis, founding partner at Urban Design Associates and a world-renowned urban planner. It is run by a dedicated staff and affiliated faculty, many of whom also teach in Carnegie Mellon’s Master of Urban Design program. The Institute's advisory board provides strategic direction to the Institute.