This month we lost a dear colleague and a giant in our field, Art Gensler. Our professional relationship with Art revolved around San Francisco International Airport projects and the Chase Arena, but more importantly, we had a personal relationship, one of friendship and mentoring. Byron’s work with Art on the board of trustees at California College of the Arts brought them together to envision ways of thinking, learning, and communicating about design to look to the future of the profession. Perhaps Art’s most arresting virtue was his innate ability to incessantly look forward and to encourage those around him to expand their viewpoints. Art taught us all how to shake it up, always with great warmth and generosity.
Recently, we have been reflecting on the impact and importance of local activism. The first article this month is a Kuth Ranieri blogpost focusing on Byron’s work with Responsible Growth in Marin. Since late 2019, RGM has been working to create an alternative vision for Marin County’s Northgate Mall after developers proposed a Costco, which was not in keeping with the community’s vision for future development of the aging mall. RGM’s concept centers on the creation of a town center flanked by new housing, green space, local shops and eateries.