A Salute to Forest City Enterprises
June 1, 2005
The National Building Museum presented its prestigious annual Honor Award for 2005 to Forest City Enterprises, in recognition of the firm’s long history of investment in and revitalization of America’s urban centers, growing dedication to sensitive planning and sustainable development, and vital role in creating affordable housing.
Forest City Enterprises accepted the award on June 1, 2005, at a festive black-tie gala in the National Building Museum’s historic Great Hall. More than 1,000 cultural, corporate, political, and building industry leaders were in attendance, with proceeds supporting the Museum’s exhibitions and programs.
“This is a very great honor for Forest City. Our company has had the pleasure of working with partners with both the desire and the expertise to collaborate with us in our urban market strategy. Together we have carried out our vision of planned sustainable communities and commercial development. It is humbling to be recognized for our work by such a prestigious institution,” said Charles A. Ratner, president and chief executive office, Forest City Enterprises, Inc.
Bestowed annually since 1986, the National Building Museum's Honor Award recognizes outstanding individuals and companies who have made significant contributions in the fields of architecture, planning, construction, and building. Forest City Enterprises will be the 19th recipient. “As the company’s many awards and accolades testify, Forest City is making a positive impact in communities across America through its development and revitalization initiatives,” said Chase Rynd, executive director of the National Building Museum. “The National Building Museum is pleased to salute Forest City for its leadership in this arena.”
Through its work across the county, Forest City has prided itself on community involvement and public partnerships, ensuring that new development respects local interests and cultural traditions. The company’s projects have been praised for enhancing the urban experience while meeting rigorous environmental standards. Valuing the importance of quality design, Forest City has worked with many recognized architects, including Frank Gehry and Renzo Piano. Forest City has also exercised leadership in making housing affordable for more Americans, incorporating substantial numbers of low- and moderate-income apartments and houses in projects ranging from coast to coast. The efforts of Forest City can be found across the United States in California, Colorado, Massachusetts, New York, Ohio, Virginia, and Washington, D.C., among other locations.
In Cleveland, Ohio, Forest City’s revitalization of Tower City Center in the late 1980s and early 90s is widely regarded as the catalyst for the rebirth of the city’s downtown. Preserving the buildings’ cultural significance, Forest City implemented a mixed-use urban revitalization, historic preservation, and adaptive re-use strategy with award-winning results. Forest City’s plan for University Park at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology received awards from the Urban Land Institute and the Bruner Foundation for its rich urban character. The once decaying and neglected area in Cambridge is now flourishing with biomedical technology firms, residents, tourists, and school children in a high-quality urban environment that offers low- and moderate-income housing and has created more than 3,000 new jobs. In Colorado, Forest City worked in concert with the City of Denver, the Stapleton Development Corporation, the Stapleton Citizens Advisory Board, the Stapleton Foundation, the Denver community, and countless other groups to create a plan for the development of Denver’s former Stapleton Airport that reflected local interests and needs. The projected-25-year-transformation of the former airport to a viable community is underway and has already been lauded for its combination of urban renewal, innovation, and sustainability through awards from the United Nations Council on Sustainable Development, the Mayors Business Council, the University of Colorado, the King of Sweden, and others.
Forest City’s successful projects serve as outstanding examples of how strategic development, planning and partnerships, combined with a commitment to sustainability, community-building, quality design, and civic responsibility, can produce livable, thriving communities that benefit their citizens.