Social Impact Design

Description

Neighborhood Allies’ Social Impact Design Program translates community visions and objectives into architectural design packages that ensure design and development projects are focused around what the community wants and needs.

The Social Impact Design program advances placemaking, place-keeping, and community-driven real estate projects through an Equity-Centered Community Development lens – a process that is people centered and encourages designers to co-create with the community by empowering those who have historically been left behind.

Goal of the Program

The overall goal of our Social Impact Design work is to make architectural and urban design accessible to historically disinvested communities by extending the capacity of local organizations and community groups, and for-profit designers. Excited to get started? Here is a tool to help you realize your Design and Development Priorities and help prepare to engage with a design team! 

What We Provide

We use our expertise to provide storytelling and design services to support the realization of community projects by acting as a translator of community visions to architects, urban designers, and developers.

We illustrate the needs of a community through low-cost/ no-cost design services up to the schematic design phase for community-driven projects. Typically, design services are offered through a three-stage strategy, including a series of charrettes and educational workshops co-created with and for the community. We also conduct thorough site analysis and research to support the project, and ensure that the long term quality of life and neighborhood image is both preserved and improved upon.

We do not offer design services beyond the schematic design level, but would be happy to connect our partners with licensed architecture professionals in our Equity-centered Designer network that can be contracted for more advanced services. 

How to Engage

Interested in learning more about our toolbox of services? Check out our program portfolio and project gallery below or submit an intake form to request services!

Not seeing what you need? Connect with our Senior Program Manager for Social Impact Design, Tamara Emswiler for information about the program and ways to collaborate at tamara@neighborhoodallies.org.

We maintain equity on both sides of a design project by elevating the voices of marginalized leaders in architecture and development, especially in our Black and Brown communities. We pipeline viable project opportunities to our Equity-Centered Designer Network where priority is given to MWDBE designers to support a talent pipeline of new Black entrepreneurs and licensed architects in Pittsburgh.  Apply to join the design network! 

Project Gallery

Program Portfolio

Stories of Impact

Neighborhood Allies honored by American Institute of Architects (AIA) Pennsylvania at 2023 Architectural Excellence Awards

Neighborhood Allies honored by American Institute of Architects (AIA) Pennsylvania at 2023 Architectural Excellence Awards

Neighborhood Allies was recently awarded the prestigious 2023 AIA ...
Request for Proposals: Social Impact Design, Equity-Centered Designer Network | BlackteaBrownSuga Network Expansion

Request for Proposals: Social Impact Design, Equity-Centered Designer Network | BlackteaBrownSuga Network Expansion

REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS Social Impact Design, Equity-Centered ...
Neighborhood Allies’ Social Impact Design Team Partners with UpstreamPgh to Envision Community-Inspired Projects in Fern Hollow Valley

Neighborhood Allies’ Social Impact Design Team Partners with UpstreamPgh to Envision Community-Inspired Projects in Fern Hollow Valley

UpstreamPgh restores and protects Southwestern Pennsylvania's ...