Designing Justice + Designing Spaces

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Designing Justice+ Designing Spaces engages communities in the design and development of new buildings, spaces, and tools to attack the root causes of mass incarceration: poverty, racism, lack of access to resources.

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11 Related Articles

DJDS in Shondaland

By Patrick Kowalczyk

Feb. 10, 2022

Deanna Van Buren, the founder of Designing Justice + Designing Spaces, is profiled today in Shondaland as part of their Black History Now series.

Permalink | Posted on Feb 10, 2022 at 8:44 PM by Patrick Kowalczyk

DJDS in Bloomberg CityLab

By Patrick Kowalczyk

Nov. 09, 2021

Bloomberg CityLab’s Zach Mortice talked to DJDS’s Deanna Van Buren about the challenges of transforming closed jails into spaces that benefit communities devastated by mass incarceration.

Deanna Van Buren tells Bloomberg: “When you have a system that at its root is structurally racist, your beautification of the infrastructure is not actually dealing with the real issues. As designers, we have to be critical of what systems we’re propping up and what we’re supporting, because architects have always just supported and propped up systems of power.”

[In the photo above: DJDS organized public meetings where community members came together to imagine a new future for the Atlanta City Detention Center.]

Permalink | Posted on Nov 09, 2021 at 8:15 AM by Patrick Kowalczyk

DJDS co-founder profiled in Financial Times, NBC News

By Patrick Kowalczyk

Mar. 07, 2021

Check out the latest profiles of Designing Justice + Designing Spaces co-founder Deanna Van Buren in NBC News (“How Oakland architect Deanna Van Buren’s passion for restorative justice manifests in her work”) and the Financial Times (“Meet the architect imagining a world without prisons”).

Permalink | Posted on Mar 07, 2021 at 12:22 AM by Patrick Kowalczyk

Deanna Van Buren on WNYC

By Patrick Kowalczyk

Oct. 15, 2020

Deanna Van Buren of Designing Justice + Designing Spaces was a guest on WNYC-AM (NPR in NYC) today to discuss how architects are taking the lead in building alternatives to prisons. For more, check out Deanna’s interview with Forbes about the the New York Chapter of the American Institute of Architects’ decision to call on architects to halt designing projects that support the current criminal justice system.

Permalink | Posted on Oct 15, 2020 at 1:34 AM by Patrick Kowalczyk

DJDS on Monocle Radio + Scratching the Surface

By Patrick Kowalczyk

Aug. 04, 2020

DJDS founder Deanna Van Buren how design can on Monocle Radio’s Monocle on Design and Scratching the Surface, named one of the best design podcasts by Architectural Digest.

Permalink | Posted on Aug 04, 2020 at 8:03 PM by Patrick Kowalczyk

Designing Justice in Ms., Fast Company, AD

By Patrick Kowalczyk

Jul. 10, 2020

As the debate grows for defunding police and shifting financing to other critical community services, Designing Justice + Designing Spaces is helping to show the nation what a world without prisons would look like.

Recent coverage includes: Politico (How to re-design the world for Coronavirus and beyond), Ms. Magazine (”Deanna Van Buren Is Building a World Without Prisons”), Architectural Digest (“Why Justice in Design Is Critical to Repairing America”), and Dezeen (“A whole lot has to get built to end mass incarceration” says Deanna van Buren).

Permalink | Posted on Jul 10, 2020 at 12:06 AM by Patrick Kowalczyk

DJDS in Fast Company

By Patrick Kowalczyk

Jun. 15, 2020

Reimagining The Jail from One Atlanta on Vimeo.

Check out the story in Fast Company today: This Atlanta jail will transform into a center for justice and equity. The article looks at how the project—which proposes to remove space for 1,300 inmates and replace it with services, reentry programs, classrooms, and an urban garden—is the latest work of reimagining the spaces of criminal justice by architect Deanna Van Buren of Designing Justice + Designing Spaces.


Permalink | Posted on Jun 15, 2020 at 12:29 AM by Patrick Kowalczyk

Designing Justice profiled by the New York Times

By Patrick Kowalczyk

Mar. 08, 2020

Check out today’s print issue of The New York Times for a full-page profile of architect Deanna Van Buren in the Arts & Leisure section. The article explores how her firm, Designing Justice + Designing Spaces, is showing it is possible to build alternatives to prisons that heal and restore rather than punish and destroy.

Permalink | Posted on Mar 08, 2020 at 8:26 PM by Patrick Kowalczyk

DJDS is Designing an End to Mass Incarceration

By Patrick Kowalczyk

Oct. 30, 2019

On the heels of the opening of Restore Oakland, the social justice campus designed by Designing Justice + Designing Spaces (DJDS), PKPR has secured a series of profiles looking at how the firm is using design to end mass incarceration.

Recent profiles include The Architect’s Newspaper (”Designing Justice + Designing Spaces builds infrastructure to end mass incarceration”), Curbed (”Can a building help end mass incarceration?”), and Archinect (”Architect Deanna Van Buren on Designing Beautiful Spaces That Amplify Self-Care, Love, Restoration, and Respect”).

Permalink | Posted on Oct 30, 2019 at 10:30 PM by Patrick Kowalczyk

Restore Oakland in CityLab, Architectural Digest

By Patrick Kowalczyk

Sep. 05, 2019

In 2017, PKPR client Deanna Van Buren delivered a TED Talk - What a World Without Prisons Could Look Like— that has been viewed more than one million times. This month, her vision moves closer to reality with the opening of Restore Oakland, a 20,000 square foot center in Oakland’s Fruitvale neighborhood that is home to one of the nation’s first spaces dedicated to restorative justice.

Restorative justice brings together the victim and the perpetrator to resolve the harm caused. Restore Oakland will work with the Alameda County District Attorney’s office to divert cases involving people aged 15 to 24 into the restorative justice program. The process takes place outside of traditional courthouses and government buildings, which tend to be windowless, oppressive, and punitive. At Restore Oakland, the Restorative Justice Rooms are painted in a peaceful and calming sky blue, there are multiple large windows, and chairs are arranged in a circle in the tradition of peace circles used by many Native American cultures.

PKPR secured coverage for the opening in The Atlantic’s CityLab, Architectural Digest, YES! Magazine, and Common Dreams.

Permalink | Posted on Sep 05, 2019 at 6:47 PM by Patrick Kowalczyk

Designing Justice’s TED Talk

By Patrick Kowalczyk

Mar. 28, 2018

Stop what you are doing and watch Deanna Van Buren’s TED Talk: What a World Without Prisons Could Look Like.

Permalink | Posted on Mar 28, 2018 at 10:46 PM by Patrick Kowalczyk

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