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All classes are suspended for the week of March 16. Starting the week of March 23, all classes will resume entirely online. Tulane School of Architecture (TuSA) remains open with most faculty and staff working remotely. Students can be granted access to work in the building only with prior approval from the school. At this time, we are not hosting admissions tours.

Please continue to check your Tulane email, Canvas, the TuSA COVID-19 FAQ, and the Tulane Emergency Management page for updates.

Tulane is working with students who have difficult personal circumstances that would make leaving campus a challenge or will face complications in online learning once they return home. In response, we have set up the Tulane Student Emergency Aid and Assistance Fund to address current student needs.

Real Estate major launches, expanding program to prepare students for growing industry

Tulane undergraduate students now have a new path to careers in real estate, including investing, financial analysis, project design, urban planning and policy. 

 

The Tulane School of Architecture officially launched its new Bachelor Science in Real Estate (BSRE) major on Thursday, Feb. 6, as part of the Urban Land Institute Louisiana annual conference in New Orleans.

 

“The major builds on the success and popularity of the Real Estate Summer Minor, which was started in 2015,” said John Huppi, adjunct faculty and Assistant Director of Real Estate Development at the Tulane School of Architecture. 

 

The major focuses on being both multidisciplinary and entrepreneurial, teaching traditional core concepts including real estate finance and project management, while integrating other design and environmental concerns, Huppi said.

 

“One thing that is unique about this program is the curriculum includes a Design + Development Studio, which enhances student’s ability to think spatially which is an important and undervalued skillset in the industry,” Huppi said.

 

The announcement of the new major came during the Urban Land Institute’s annual Louisiana conference, held at Tulane’s Lavin-Bernick Center and co-sponsored by the Real Estate Development program at the school of architecture. The gathering brought together roughly 150 professionals from across the state to discuss the latest trends in the real estate industry.

 

Anne Teague Landis, ULI Louisiana Chair and CEO of Landis Construction, said the new BSRE major is a great idea because of its emphasis on preparing students to collaborate with a range of professionals in the various sectors of the real estate business. 

 

“The best development projects are the ones where people are really collaborative and able to work together for the good of project,” said Landis, whose firm has also hosted Tulane graduate students from the school of architecture’s Master of Sustainable Real Estate Development program.

 

Development is also a complex undertaking, Landis said, and it’s important for young people who are beginning to explore careers in real estate to understand all the aspects that go into it – from financing and community engagement to design and construction. 

 

“It’s hard sometimes without any basic foundational knowledge of what someone else’s piece of the puzzle is,” Landis said. “The nomenclature is different, and you’re creating a fluency that allows for better collaboration that’s maybe missing if there isn’t some of that insight being built early on.”

 

And students are eager to broaden their education. Getting as much out of his time in college as possible is why Tulane junior Jacob Levanthal is interested in pursuing the BSRE. He already completed the Real Estate Summer Minor, which covers much of the major’s course load. But now he’s interested in rounding that out. 

 

“The design aspect is really interesting,” Levanthal said. “It’s an expansion of your mind in a way.”

Students compete in National Real Estate Challenge

Since 2002, teams of graduate students from top-ranked business schools have congregated in Austin, Texas, to participate in a case-based real estate competition.

The invitation-only National Real Estate Challenge requires participants to analyze a recent real estate transaction completed by a leading global real estate firm. Participants represent some of the most talented real estate students, while judge panels consist of executives from leading real estate firms across the country.

This past year, the competition welcomed a team featuring students from two Tulane programs: the Freeman School’s MBA program and the School of Architecture’s Master of Sustainable Real Estate Development program. This year, the Freeman School and the School of Architecture teamed up to launch a new master’s program for students interested in combining business and sustainable real estate development.

The new Tulane MBA/MSRED, the only program of its kind in the nation, awards students both an MBA and a master’s degree in Sustainable Real Estate Development. Through the real-world application of theory to current real estate development projects, graduates are well-prepared for the ever-changing real estate industry. Graduates are armed with skills to successfully work in all areas of real estate development, including: finance, analytics, design, management and consulting.

“We are disrupting how real estate has been taught to drive change in the educational landscape of this field,” says Casius Pealer, director of Sustainable Real Estate Development and Shane Professor of Practice at the Tulane School of Architecture. “We want students to analyze the implications of technology, environmental changes and urbanization to better understand how political, ecological and cultural forces impact real estate development. By creating an interdisciplinary program, our alumni can anticipate the long-term social and financial effects of development.”

The MBA/MSRED is an accelerated two-year, full-time program. Students benefit from Freeman’s small cohorts, active learning environment and direct engagement with industry leaders. 

This story was originally posted by Freeman News at the Tulane University A.B. Freeman School of Business.

Students selected for AIA Emerging Professionals Exhibit

A project by four Tulane School of Architecture students is featured in the recent 2019 Emerging Professionals Exhibit by AIA. The theme for this year’s AIA Emerging Professionals Exhibit is “Designing for Equity," and it's based on the Guides for Equitable Practice and the AIA value “We believe in the power of design." The 15 digitally exhibited projects are a representation of best practices for a more just and equitable profession.

The Tulane project team includes students and alumni from the Master of Sustainable Real Estate Development program Keristen Edwards, Lina Alfieri Stern, Muhanad Alfardan, and Veronika Suarez. Their proposed project, Hotel Inspire, is an accommodation for travelers centering the experiences and needs of people experiencing disabilities.

The vision for this hotel project was inspired by the experiences and vision of all avid travelers, no matter their physical circumstances. Every hotel operation is unique but one aspect shared by all hotels - if they are to operate profitably - is to retain the loyalty of existing satisfied customers and to attract new ones. If this is true, there is a market of 26 million people traveling with disabilities in the U.S. every year that like any other traveler, would simply wish traveling to be accessible and memorable. Not all hotel guests are the same or have the same abilities, at Hotel Inspire, upon arrival to the in-room experience the guest is given ownership to accommodate their environment according to their needs and preferences while also providing the expected practicalities. Guest rooms offer ample space to move freely, shower and sleep safely and feel luxurious and comforted no matter their support needs. The highlight feature of this hotel is the ramp, no longer should guests fear to wait at the top of the stair in the event of an emergency. Hotel Inspire is a place where there are no barriers but more options for enjoyment, safety, and comfort.

For more images of this project and more information about the 2019 AIA Emerging Professionals Exhibit, click here.

Small Center celebrates national design award

A young man dropped into the concrete bowl beneath the overpass, the wheels of his skateboard drowned out by the roar of commuters on the interstate above him. Others tried out a temporary makeshift ramp cobbled together from pallets and plywood. Rain poured off the overpass, falling into rain gardens designed to prevent pooling water from ruining the fun.

On Tuesday, October 29, an award ceremony was held at Parisite Skate Park, New Orleans’ first and only official public skatepark and a silver medal winner for the Rudy Bruner Award for Urban Excellence.

Founded by architect Simeon Bruner, the national design contest recognizes transformative urban places distinguished by their economic and social contributions to America’s cities. Medalists reflect the diversity of urban excellence and yield fresh ideas and perspectives that challenge our assumptions and increase our understanding of how to make great urban places.

Tulane School of Architecture’s Albert and Tina Small Center for Collaborative Design collaborated with Transitional Spaces, a non-profit organization representing the local skater community, to work with the City of New Orleans and see the skater’s vision for the park come to fruition.

Parisite was driven and created by the park’s users as opposed to a traditional top down approach, observed Rudy Bruner Award Director Anne-Marie Lubenau.

The ceremony was followed by a reception and panel discussion at the Small Center. The panel featured members of the design team and representatives from the Mayor’s office, Transitional Spaces and the Bruner Foundation. It focused on the park’s creation, lessons learned, and its potential for informing the process of communal park design.

“Parisite is an example of how the Small Center’s process of collaborative community-driven design allows groups with divergent priorities to work productively to resolve their differences and come together to see projects through to completion,” Small Center Director Ann Yoachim said.

New design major launches

A new major for design launched on Oct. 23 at Tulane School of Architecture. The Bachelor of Arts in Design (BADes) will introduce students to design as a language as well an exploration of solutions-based design processes. The major will provide Tulane University undergraduate students with a broad design education inclusive of multiple modes of practice and an understanding of the fundamental linkages between design, society, and culture.

"The BADes will examine principles of the discipline that engage people, history, and environments through performative technologies, and project realization at multiple scales," said Marianne Desmarais, Director of Undergraduate Architecture. "It serves as an entry point to various allied career paths such as graphic design, architecture, product design, interior design, and time-based design."

New faculty member, Lesley-Ann Noel, led an engaging design challenge as part of the BADes launch event on Oct. 23.

Eligibility to declare the major starts Fall 2020, but courses can be taken now.

School of Architecture geographer and author wins Louisiana Writer Award

Tulane University geography professor Richard Campanella, author of 11 books on the geography, history, architecture and culture of Louisiana, is the recipient of the 2019 Louisiana Writer Award. The award is presented annually by the Louisiana Center for the Book of the State Library of Louisiana.

Campanella will receive the award Nov. 2 at the opening ceremony of the Louisiana Book Festival at the State Capitol in recognition of his outstanding contribution to documenting Louisiana’s history, culture and people.

“The historical geography of New Orleans and Louisiana is really the story of millions of people creating cityscapes and landscapes over hundreds of years,” said Campanella, a senior professor of practice in the Tulane School of Architecture. “I am humbled by the task of trying to understand all this complex place-making, and I feel deeply honored to be recognized by the state for the effort.”

Campanella’s works includes “Bienville’s Dilemma: A Historical Geography of New Orleans,” described by the New York Review of Books as the “single best history of the city…masterful.” He is also the author of “Geographies of New Orleans: Urban Fabrics Before the Storm” (University of Louisiana Press, 2006), which came out just after Hurricane Katrina. That book also won rave reviews, with The Times-Picayune calling it “a powerful (and) dazzling book, unparalleled in its scope, precision, clarity and detail.”

His book “Bourbon Street: A History,” was declared by the New York Review of Books as “absorbing...persuasive…gleefully subversive. There may be no one better qualified to write such a history than Campanella.”

A native of Brooklyn, New York, Campanella is the only two-time winner of the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities Book of the Year Award. He has also won the Louisiana Literary Award, the Williams Prize, the Malcolm Heard Award for Excellence in Teaching, the Hannah Arendt Prize for Public Scholarship and the Tulane Honors Professor of the Year. In 2016, the Government of France named Campanella as Chevalier dans l’Ordre des Palmes Académiques.

Campanella lives with his wife Marina and their son Jason in uptown New Orleans. His next book, “The West Bank of Greater New Orleans: A Historical Geography,” will be released by Louisiana State University Press in 2020.

To read the full story from Tulane University, click here.

Archinect interviews Dean Iñaki Alday

Archinect magazine recently interviewed Tulane School of Architecture Dean Iñaki Alday as part of its Deans List interview series with the leaders of architecture schools, worldwide. The series profiles the school’s programming, as defined by the dean – giving an invaluable perspective into the institution’s unique curriculum, faculty and academic environment.

For this installment, Archinect spoke with Iñaki Alday, the new dean at the Tulane School of Architecture. The school hosts a variety of degree and specialized programs that combine architecture, real estate development, historic preservation, and community-driven focuses to provide a holistic design education. Dean Alday recently took the reins of the school with the aim of leading the Gulf Coast region and country, overall, in terms of "what it means to live with water."

Read below for the full story or click here for the original piece in Archinect by Managing Editor Antonio Pacheco (TSA *14).

Briefly describe Tulane School of Architecture’s pedagogical stance on architecture education.

Tulane School of Architecture has a history of commitment to real, pressing issues, and, especially after Hurricane Katrina, a history of leadership in helping our communities rebuild. We are not interested in the endogamic discourses that have occupied academia for decades, taking us away from society and relevancy. In the past, many schools of architecture have failed as educators and as leaders of our societies. Therefore, our school focuses on urgent problems, not self-indulgent fictions. The school is in the heart of the “Third Coast”–the American Gulf Coast–where all the challenges of human inhabitation of the planet are at play. This exceptional location, being in the Mississippi Delta, also provides us with the opportunity to define the role that architecture can take in facing climate change—including other ecological crises, as well as in the process of urbanization under these circumstances—and the challenges of social and environmental justice that follow.

What insights from your past professional experience are you hoping to integrate/adopt as dean?

A significant part of my professional practice is focused on the connection between cities, and buildings, with rivers and their dynamics. For example, my partner Margarita Jover and I were among the first to “design” the flood that occupies a public space and a building (an arena) in Spain, starting a line of investigation that changes the idea of flooding (and all river dynamics) from a catastrophic event into a positive asset. Since then we have been planning, designing, and building “hybrid infrastructures” in Spain, Asia, and Latin America, and also, working as regular experts for the World Bank. This type of creative, innovative design work is key for Tulane as it seeks to lead the region and country in terms of what it means to live with water.

Academically, I enjoyed being chair of the Department of Architecture at the University of Virginia (2011-16), where I founded the Yamuna River Project together with Pankaj Vir Gupta, an interdisciplinary research program whose objective is to revitalize the ecology of the Yamuna River in New Delhi, thus reconnecting India’s capital city back to the water. This project is proof of how architecture and urbanism can approach complex problems holistically while incorporating multiple fields (history, art history, engineering, economics, religious studies, entrepreneurship, engineering, environmental sciences, and politics, for example). It is a great example of making an impact in one of the toughest urban crises. We are continuing with the project at Tulane, expanding it to other cities in India and the Global South.

Rivers and their associated communities are at the frontline of climate impacts. Globally, river basins provide the majority of the world’s food and freshwater, and more than 500 million people live on river deltas, which also form the major ports of the world. Along the roughly 2,300 miles of the Mississippi River alone are situated at least seven major urban centers, while 50 cities rely on the Mississippi to provide drinking water for 20 million people. The Mississippi River Basin, the world’s fourth largest river basin, spans 31 states and two Canadian provinces, providing more than 40-percent of US agriculture with water while producing $400 billion of economic activity. It is among the leading locations facing significant conditions of accelerating risk, as well. Similar conditions are replicated in multiple river basins across the planet, especially in the Global South, where regions are facing the crises of pollution, floods, and scarcity, and, most critically, in urbanized contexts and in the rapidly growing megalopolises in South East Asia, Africa, and Latin America.

What kind of student do you think would flourish at Tulane University and why?

At Tulane, a student needs to be committed, not only to excellence but also to stepping out of her or his comfort zone, collaborating with other fields inside the school (architecture, preservation, sustainable real estate), and with those outside the school (science and engineering, social sciences, economics, humanities, and law). And above all, our students are encouraged to look beyond themselves, to avoid cherry-picking problems, and to committing to positively impacting the lives of others. The Albert and Tina Small Center for Collaborative Design works directly with communities, URBANbuild produces a yearly miracle of an affordable house designed and built by students, and our river and delta urbanism research offers a unique approach and a track record of substantial impact in the cities set alongside the Mississippi River and alongside the rivers of India, Argentina, and Ethiopia.

What are the biggest challenges, academically and professionally, facing students?

The recovery of architecture as a relevant discipline in the collective imagination is the biggest challenge. Architecture needs to be at the table where big decisions are made. This is the challenge that our students need to take on, and will become experts in, after 50 years of architecture being isolated in disconnected academic discourses or assuming the role of pure service provider. The new generations have the mandate of recovering the leadership role that society and the planet need.

What are some of the larger issues of “today” that you feel an architecture school should be preparing its students for?

We are in the midst of the most significant environmental and social crises, one that is even threatening our own existence on the earth. We urgently need to change the way in which we are inhabiting the planet, change how new buildings perform, how they serve people, how they look, and where they are located. And similarly, we need to rethink what and how to preserve, where and how to develop, and how our cities should be symbiotic with natural elements. Right now, architecture is losing relevance in discussions about the built environment in many countries around the world, and most strikingly, in the United States.

At Tulane, we train students with a holistic approach, giving them interdisciplinary tools to help them learn to identify which are the most pressing issues so they can figure out how to apply their design, preservation, or sustainable real estate development education in order to address them. We advocate for the production of knowledge and innovation through design, which for us, is understood as the creative management of complexity. When we, as architects, are able to go beyond our personal preferences, there is no other kind of professional better prepared for dealing with the complex and uncertain world around us.

What are some of the advantages of the school’s context—being housed within Tulane University as well as in New Orleans—and how do you think they help make the program unique?

Tulane University is a top-tier research university, and the perfect size for interdisciplinary collaborations, which is a priority of the university president, provost and all the deans here. From my perspective, “curiosity” and “ambition” are the two words that define Tulane today and that’s what attracted me here. New Orleans is also the northernmost tip of the Global South. Both facts together position Tulane uniquely as the only top research university that is located in a place that deals with all the challenges—social, environmental, economic—in the most exciting, dynamic, and needed region in the world. And our university is committed to work that brings innovation by crossing disciplinary boundaries. This is the only school of architecture that has fully committed to rebuilding a city after a major catastrophe like Hurricane Katrina. Solving urgent problems, housing people, working with communities to bring them back, developing new scenarios to inhabit our rivers and deltas—those issues are deeply rooted in Tulane’s identity. Because of the uniqueness of Tulane, the School of Architecture is a school that has no parallel.

Tulane needs to keep growing and positioning itself as a genuine voice, very different to our peers due to our unique ecosystem and concerns. We are already a driving force in New Orleans and the region; however, we should also become an international reference working on comparative methods. Our challenges are the world’s challenges, and the best way to learn and move forward is to hold a continuous back and forth between our attention to the local conditions and the lessons learned globally.

Tulane School of Architecture has a significant record of working within the New Orleans community, how will you take on that legacy?

First of all, we should probably say “communities,” as New Orleans is a diverse city with many different communities. They are always complex and contradictory—And there is never a single belonging, but often multiple and always nested systems of them. That being said, New Orleans epitomizes the challenges of thousands of towns, cities, and metropolises set alongside American rivers. We are at the intersection of floods, scarcity, pollution, land loss, and other riverine environmental issues, and we are dealing with the societal impact of those as well as the impacts of post-industrial economic stagnation, transportation crises, and other social challenges. Working from New Orleans—a microcosm of global issues—the Tulane School of Architecture is well positioned to lead the work in terms of how to relate our cities and our rivers in a completely different way. Floods are here to stay, and we have to design our spaces to make them productive—instead of catastrophic—by turning floods into an opportunity rather than a threat. Instead of walls, our rivers and cities deserve public spaces that can navigate the changes and recover healthy ecologies. Buildings need to be adapted to leverage the river or the delta, as well. This is a natural human inclination, but now we must apply it in a different way, undergoing proper transformation.

Can you speak to the nature of collaboration that exists between Tulane School of Architecture’s various programs (Architecture, Preservation, Real Estate Development, the Albert and Tina Small Center for Collaborative Design, URBANbuild, Social Innovation and Social Entrepreneurship) and your plans for those efforts?

Tulane School of Architecture offers the essentials we need to rethink how to inhabit our planet: what and how to preserve, where and how to sustainably develop the land, and how to design buildings, public spaces, and cities. Dual degrees are excellent choices that round-out an effective education and prepare our graduates for thinking broadly, creatively, and responsibly. We have interdisciplinary studios among the three programs, design-build studios with our community partners, and a wide range of courses open to all Tulane students. All in all, every student has the opportunity to excel in her or his degree while being knowledgeable about other areas. An architect needs to know how to deal with existing buildings and to understand the logics of real estate development. Similarly, historic preservationists incorporate design and advanced digital tools while understanding the economic implications of their work, including the risk of gentrification. And a developer of the future cannot be anything other than sustainable, must understand the potential of reusing our heritage, and know how high-quality design improves the conditions of life.

Rudy Bruner Award winner has Tulane School of Architecture connections

The 2019 Rudy Bruner Award for Urban Excellence Gold Medalist has been named, and several Tulane School of Architecture alumni and faculty were involved in the winning project: Crosstown Concourse in Memphis, Tennessee.

Architecture faculty Emilie Taylor Welty and Seth Welty designed the Crosstown's French Truck Memphis coffee bar, one of several food establishments in the building. Additionally, Tulane alumni Lee Askew III, FAIA, (Architecture '66) was the architect of the charter high school inside the building; and Tony Bologna, FAIA, (Architecture '64) was an instrumental force as one of five architects leading the concept and development for the overall project.

Completed in 2017, Crosstown Concourse is a $210 million rehabilitation project, transforming a historic Sears, Roebuck & Company distribution center into a mixed-use vertical village. The biggest adaptive reuse project in Tennessee and the largest LEED Platinum Certified historic adaptive reuse project in the world, the 16-acre development integrates housing, offices, restaurants, and retail along with nonprofit arts and culture, health and wellness, and educational organizations.

Once home to the city’s largest employer, the 1.5-million-square-foot structure was abandoned in 1993 and stood vacant for more than 20 years. In 2010, Crosstown Arts was founded as a nonprofit arts organization to create a vision for its redevelopment that would cultivate the city’s creative community through “an open and inclusive place designed to dissolve barriers to access.”

Designed by Memphis-based Looney Ricks Kiss in association with DIALOG (Vancouver) and Spatial Affairs Bureau (UK), among others, Crosstown Concourse is now home to 40 diverse tenants and 265 apartments housing over 400 residents.

Read the full announcement from Metropologis Magazine here.

Foundation Awards Grant to Rework Waterfront in Argentinian City

The Baton Rouge Area Foundation has approved a $75,000 grant to Tulane School of Architecture and The Water Institute of the Gulf to support their work in developing a plan to remake the waterfront in Quilmes, Argentina.

The Tulane School of Architecture team on the grant includes Dean Iñaki Alday, serving as principal investigator, and Associate Professor Margarita Jover, along with student research assistants, all of whom will work with scientists and engineers at The Water Institute.

Tulane’s School of Architecture and the Institute will provide the needed coastal science and urban repair advice that policymakers, scientists and designers in the Quilmes-Rio de la Plata region of Argentina need to reinvent their coastline. Tulane and The Water Institute will advise on the leading projects currently under consideration by Quilmes and its more than half-million inhabitants.

Quilmes wants to transform an area of slaughterhouses and heavy industries along the coast into communities that include a diverse mix of incomes. The new waterfront is envisioned to include affordable housing and public places, such as parks and plazas.

Scientists and land planners from Tulane and The Water Institute will review the current conditions and the impact of potential interventions to develop scenarios for the city and its residents to consider. These scenarios may include changes to existing land-use plans and working to develop a unified vision for the entire waterfront to achieve the long-term vibrancy of the city.

“This grant continues our belief that the best water science in the world is coming from Louisiana, and the solutions should be shared to benefit the thee billion people who live on shifting coasts around the world,” said John G. Davies, president and CEO of the Baton Rouge Area Foundation. “The grant also supports the researchers and urbanists from Tulane and The Water Institute as they build their young partnership.”

The Foundation started the Institute to provide independent science for implementing the Louisiana Coastal Master Plan. Now a stand-alone science institute, it has expanded its work around the planet, offering solutions to rising seas and vanishing wetlands in Fiji, Vietnam, Chile, with more recent collaborations with science organizations in Israel, Netherlands, France and Samoa.

Spring 2019 Final Reviews

Final Reviews Calendar

Click on the link above to view the Spring 2019 Final Reviews Virtual Booklet, including a calendar of scheduled reviews and bios of our guest critics. Final Reviews end with a celebratory Thesis Reception on Wednesday, May 8, at 6 p.m. on the Academic Quad in front of Richardson Memorial Hall. All are welcome to attend any or all of the review events.

For more information, email tsaevents@tulane.edu.

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