On July 8, 2016, the NoVo Foundation and Goren Group announced Deborah Berke Partners
as the winner of The Women’s Building International Design Competition. Berke, who has promoted the advancement of women in the field of architecture throughout her career, will lead a diverse team of designers and architects to transform the former Bayview Correctional Facility into The Women’s Building – a permanent home for the girls’ and women’s rights movement in New York City. Founded in 2006 by Jennifer and Peter Buffett, the NoVo Foundation is one of the largest private foundations in the world supporting initiatives focused explicitly on girls and women.
An eight-person committee
composed of leading architects, girls’ and women’s rights activists, and other industry professionals reviewed over 43 submissions from a diverse, accomplished, and inspiring range of architects and design firms before selecting Berke’s proposal.
The following three firms were selected as finalists amongst a shortlist of 10 other incredibly talented applicants
Berke’s proposal was based on a draft concept for the building, which continues to be developed and refined through ongoing consultation with leaders from across the girls’ and women’s rights movement. Berke and her team will now be an active partner in these discussions. Among many other factors, the Selection Committee was impressed with the visionary ideas in the proposal, the co-creative spirit of the design team, and the firm’s alignment with the mission and values of The Women’s Building. The selection process showcased the talents of women-led teams against the backdrop of a largely male-dominated field.
The NoVo Foundation and Goren Group estimate that construction of The Women’s Building will begin in 2017, and it should be open by 2020.