TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 15, 2016 | PETER JAY SHARP THEATER, NEW MUSEUM

The one-day, members-only 2016 MAS Summit tackles a subject at the very core of the MAS legacy and advocacy agenda: New York City's public assets

A healthy, dynamic, and inclusive city depends on the protection and promotion of what is collectively ours—parks, open space, libraries, museums, streetscapes, infrastructure, views, and other intangible resources—on which our quality of life depends. We will be asking and answering the questions: "What are public assets? Why do they matter? Who decides?"

Join us as we drill down on the process of advocating for public assets. 


qUANTIFYING: VALUE BEYOND MONEY

Assigning value to our shared public assets most often comes down to a dollar amount. But what is lost when we only measure value in monetary terms? How do we account for less tangible elements like light, air, neighborhood character, aesthetics, utility, and health, upon which quality of life depends? What new metrics should be considered in the decision-making process to ensure that our assets are properly protected and promoted?


PLANNING: WEIGHING THE BALANCE

New York is a vast and complex city of innumerable competing interests and priorities. Weighing the importance of one asset against another requires a highly coordinated effort on the part of decision makers, planning practitioners, and involved citizens. To determine the best path forward, how do we guarantee that investment in one asset does not supplant another? How do we engage with a wide range of communities to stimulate meaningful participation in the process and arrive at consensus?


FINANCING: PRIVATE ENDS TO PUBLIC MEANS

Faced with shrinking budgets, cities have turned to the private sector to shore up financing for public assets. The creation of new parks and open space, transportation upgrades, and maintenance of our affordable housing stock are increasingly dependent on private development and investment. What are the implications of this trend and are there viable alternatives? Accounting for both immediate and future needs, how do we make sure that these deals are done in the public’s best interest?


ANALYZING: cLOSING THE LOOP

Land-use and environmental review processes are designed to garner public input and disclose critical information, anticipating outcomes of projects that affect our public assets. Once a project is complete, are the assumptions and mitigation measures ever checked against real world conditions? Who is responsible for enforcing community benefits agreements made during planning stages? What mechanisms can be implemented to accurately assess the true impact of a project and foster accountability?