PORT Urbanism is a leading-edge design consultancy specializing in the analysis, visioning, design and implementation of new forms of collective space, ranging in scale from plazas and public waterfronts to institutional framework plans and regional planning strategies.
The practice synthesizes professional expertise in architecture, urban design, landscape architecture, ecology and urban planning in order to provide the hybrid model of design services necessary to negotiate today’s complex public realm challenges.
Established by Christopher Marcinkoski and Andrew Moddrell in 2010, PORT has evolved into one of the most innovative public realm design practices operating in the U.S. today. The work of the firm looks to leverages the latent civic, ecological and cultural potentials embedded within a given context in order to imagine fresh, compelling, memorable and culturally relevant public landscapes.
Recent projects include a multi-disciplinary visioning project to determine an ideal role for the historic Cook County Hospital and surrounding grounds within the broader context of the Illinois Medical District (Chicago Central Area Committee); the design and construction of a civic venue in Denver’s Paco Sanchez Park (Denver Parks and Recreation); a 51-mile planning study for the Los Angeles River Greenway (Los Angeles River Revitalization Corp.); the design and construction of a 14-acre civic venue in Denver’s City Park (Denver Parks and Recreation); the public realm design for the new Moscow International Financial City (SOM Chicago); and a visioning study for the Calumet Core region located in Southeast Chicago and Northwest Indiana (Openlands).
In addition to the practice’s own work, the partners bring a significant body of expertise and experience from prior senior-level positions at James Corner Field Operations of New York as well as Garofalo Architects and UrbanLab of Chicago. Further, Mr. Marcinkoski and Mr. Moddrell also hold academic appointments, in the University of Pennsylvania Department of Landscape Architecture and the University of Illinois-Chicago School of Architecture, respectively.
PORT A+U’s design work and urban research has been recognized by the Bauhaus Foundation in Dessau, Germany; the Van Alen Institute in New York City; and has been exhibited and published internationally in Germany, Scotland, China, Spain and South Korea, as well as in the U.S. PORT was awarded the unanimous first prize in the Working Public Architecture 2.0 international design competition for re-imagining urban infrastructure in the United States. The work was presented and exhibited at the National Building Museum in Washington D.C., and subsequently presented to lawmakers on Capitol Hill. The office was also recently part of the advisory panel for the National Endowment for the Arts inaugural “Our Town” initiative that awarded more than $6.5 million to be invested in communities that are supporting the arts as part of a community revitalization strategy.
The practice is the recipient of numerous design awards, including mentions or finalists in multiple Van Alen Institute competitions (Urban Voids - 2006, Gateway National Park - 2007, and Life at the Speed of Rail - 2011); First Prize in the 2010 FORMCities Design Competition for its “Re-Cultivating the Forest City” project; a unanimous First Prize in the UCLA/cityLAB WPA 2.0 Infrastructural Design Competition in 2009 for its “Carbon T.A.P.//Tunnel Algae Park” project; and a 2004 International Bauhaus Award for research into “Combinatory Urbanisms.” PORT was recently awarded the Chicago Architecture Club's 2014 "Emerging Visions" Award.
PORT’s design work and research has been exhibited and published internationally in a number of journals and books, among them Paisea 23 – Large Scale, a Spanish Journal of Landscape Architecture; Urban INFILL volume no. 5: Diagrammtically (Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative/Kent State University); Praxis: journal of writing and building, Issue 13: Eco-Logics; ExtraStateCraft: Global Infrastructure as a Medium of Polity (Jan van Eyck Academie); Gateway: Visions for an Urban National Park (Princeton Architectural Press); MID- (Mississipi State University); One Hundred Competition Works (Liaoning Science + Technology Publishing House); Dirt: via Books Volume 2 (MIT Press); Fast Forward Urbanism (Princeton Architectural Press); and Architecture as Infrastructure: Designing Composite Networks (Jovis); Landscape Architecture China; Metropolis; Concept (Korea); and 20|20: Editorial Takes On Architectural Discourse (Architectural Association Publications).
PORT has been recognized in the following design competitions:
Awarded Project, with Indie Architecture: Denver City Park ReImagine Play Design Competition - "City Loop,"
Denver Department of Parks and Recreation (October 2012)
Honorable Mention: Life at the Speed of Rail Design Competition - “I Love Great Lakes City,”
Van Allen Institute (June 2011)
First Prize (unanimous): FORMCities Design Competition - “Re-Cultivating the Forest City,”
Mississippi State University and the Jackson Community Design Center (November 2010)
Semi-Finalist: The ONE Prize - “Carbon T.A.P.,”
The Terreform ONE Prize Competition (June 2010)
Honorable Mention: Steedman Design Competition 2010 - “STL SuperConnect,”
Washington University in St. Louis Department of Architecture (May 2010)
First Prize (unanimous): WPA 2.0: Working Public Architecture - “Carbon T.A.P,”
UCLA / cityLAB and The National Building Museum (November 2009)
Finalist: Envisioning Gateway National Park International Competition - “Urban Barometer”
Van Alen Institute (Summer 2007)
Honorable Mention: Urban Voids International Ideas Competition - “Emergent Urbanism”
Van Alen Institute (Spring 2006)
Runner-Up: Third International Bauhaus Award (Transit Spaces) - “Combinatory Urbanism”
Bauhaus Foundation - Dessau, Germany (October 2004)