Sustainability and Modernism: Design Research at Cornell NYC


  • Ilana Judah FXFOWLE Architects
  • Daniel Kaplan FXFOWLE Architects




Modern Movement, Modern architecture, Modern housing


Sustainability is now replacing Modernism as the main discourse for socio–economic, technological, architectural and urban development. However, the architectural legacy of Modernism remains an inherent part of our built environment. While some tenets of Modernism align with principles of sustainable design, many are in conflict, thus creating both a tension and an opportunity for creative reinvention of existing buildings and neighborhoods. Greening Manhattan’s Modernist Legacy was a seminar taught at Cornell University’s school of architecture that investigated these questions. The seminar explored an analytical approach to retrofitting Modernbuildings that prioritized environmental responsibility while critically reinterpreting the Modern aesthetic.

How to Cite

Judah, I., & Kaplan, D. (2011). Sustainability and Modernism: Design Research at Cornell NYC. Docomomo Journal, (44), 40–47.




Author Biographies

Ilana Judah, FXFOWLE Architects

Is an architect and Director of Sustainability at FXFOWLE Architects. She is currently leading a sustainability strategies study for Tulane University, which will serve as a tool for research and education at the School of Architecture. She serves as co–chair of AIA New York’s Committee on the Environment, and is a Visiting Instructor at Cornell’s College of Architecture, Art and Planning.

Daniel Kaplan, FXFOWLE Architects

Is a senior partner at FXFOWLE Architects, and design director of the firm’s Urban Studio. He is widely recognized for integrating design excellence, sustainable innovation, and an urban point–of–view into noteworthy architectural and urban design projects such as 11 Times Square and the New York Times Building (with Renzo Piano). He is a Visiting Lecturer at Cornell’s College of Architecture, Art and Planning.


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