About the Superstudio

Running from August 1, 2020 until June 30, 2021, the Green New Deal Superstudio was an open call for designs that spatially manifest the principles and policy ideas of H.R. 109 with regional and local specificity.

A national climate plan like the Green New Deal will be understood by most people through the landscapes, buildings, infrastructures, and public works agenda that it inspires. The Superstudio was a concerted effort to give form and visual clarity to the unprecedented scale, scope, and pace of physical landscape transformation that it implies.

Why the Green New Deal?

In the press conference announcing H.R. 109, Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez remarked that the public should view the non-binding resolution as a "Request for Proposals…we’ve defined the scope and where we want to go. Now, let’s assess where we are, how we get there, and collaborate on real projects."

Since then, a new body of policy development and economic research has emerged, but the work accomplished to date on the Green New Deal has been focused on abstract, national-scale economic and political strategies. Little has dealt directly with the physical transformation of the built environment.

The 670 Superstudio submissions and the ongoing conversations they engender is our contribution to Ocasio-Cortez’s request.

How the Superstudio worked

Through a year-long open call, designers were invited to be part of this historic, national initiative. Participation in the Green New Deal Superstudio was open to all design schools, professional practices, design and planning related organizations, and individuals.

Registrants became part of a loose, collaborative network of participating studios and had access to a design brief and supporting resources such as webinars, reviews, and discussions that were coordinated and supported by the organizing partners.

As a final product, participants could submit three boards/images representing their work with an accompanying description. For university studios, work was submitted for an entire course, small groups, or individual students, depending on how each studio was organized.

A total of 670 projects were submitted, which then underwent a review and curation process with the organizing partners and a team of reviewers.

A curated set of 55 projects were selected to catalyze conversation and illustrate the wide variety of issues, innovation, scales, and geographic regions represented in submissions.


The Green New Deal Superstudio is a joint initiative of the following Organizing Partners:

  • Landscape Architecture Foundation (LAF)

  • Weitzman School of Design McHarg Center at the University of Pennsylvania

  • Center for Resilient Cities and Landscapes (CRCL) at Columbia University

  • American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA)

  • Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture (CELA)

The idea for the Superstudio was born of conversations among Barbara Deutsch (LAF), Richard Weller (McHarg), Kate Orff (CRCL), and Billy Fleming (McHarg) who became the core group guiding the initiative with input from an Advisory Committee.

Megan Barnes (LAF) served as the program manager.