Audi Urban Future Initiative shows how Manhattan will look like in 2030

Article by Christian A., on May 4, 2011

How Manhattan will look in the future is something that has caught the imagination of many filmmakers and now, Audi wants to take a shot at it with its exhibit named the Audi Urban Future Initiative.

Audi believes that in 2030, Manhattan will be multicultural and it will be green. The venue of this exhibit is the New Museum at the Bowery. Audi has gotten designers, architects, and artists to create a unified version of how life in the city will be in less than 20 years.

It has assigned five major New York architecture firms to focus on one section of the island. Visitors to the exhibit would see a 1:1200 rendering of the Manhattan of 2030. There’s even a rendering of the island folding upon itself, much like what was seen in the movie Inception.

Peter Schwarzenbauer, an Audi board member, said that the Audi Urban Future Initiative demonstrates how the Audi, as a globally operating company, exercises social responsibility.

He said that for these visions to be turned into reality quicker, the experts are getting involved in the debate on the city’s future. Audi also believes that it has its role to play in shaping the future of this city and so it is teaming up with experts from other fields. It’s definitely a treat to attend the Festival of Ideas for the New City. There will be a three-day symposium from May 7-9 on this subject.

Audi US President Johan de Nysschen said that the upcoming years may define new understandings regarding urban living, mobility and their future. Therefore, Audi is privileged to start a discussion on different visions of this subject matter in New York via the efforts of the Audi Urban Future Initiative.

"Audi Urban Future: Project New York” visualizes a new city built on the concepts that won an award for the inaugural Audi Urban in 2010 in Venice, Italy and also the winning entry of J. MAYER H. Architects from Berlin. This project gives a peep into the city of the future and how it looks as well as starts a conversation on innovation, fresh ways to communicate, one-of-a-kind concepts of living spaces, fresh versions of solutions for roadways and infrastructure.

To transform these concepts into reality in New York, Audi worked in cooperation with Architizer, a top online community for architects, to name 5 upcoming architectural practices like ABRUZZO BODZIAK ARCHITECTS, labDORA, LEONG LEONG, MATTER PRACTICE and THEVERYMANY, LLC. These firms have taken the insights of the architects associated with the Audi Urban Future Award 2010 then applied them to New York leading to a 50-ft. interactive Manhattan model in 2030.

Together with a view of the way the city of the future could look like, the project also starts extensive discussions on infrastructure, research towards the future and discussions on urban development. IArchitizer project curators Christopher Barley and Troy Conrad Therrien commented that instead of competition, Project New York serves as a lab to utilize the full potential of contingency, dissemination and collaboration to go beyond the limits of a single idea, one city and the present time.

The 5 original concepts of the 2010 Audi Urban Future Award in Venice, Italy, will be showcased at Openhouse Gallery with entries from Standardarchitecture, Diller Scofidio + Renfro, J. MAYER H. Architects, Cloud9 Architecture Studio,Big-Bjarke Ingels Group and Alison Brooks Architects.

Audi’s “Festival of Ideas for the New City”

The Audi Urban Future Initiative is introduced in NYC as part of the “Festival of Ideas for the New City” of the New Museum. This key new collaborative initiative entails downtown organizations such as universities, arts institutions and community groups working hand in hand to cause change. This is a first for the city and will exploit the creative community’s power to envision the future city as well as explore ideas bound to form it. Audi is the lead sponsor of the Festival.

Press Release

Audi Urban Future Initiative Arrives in New York City May 7 through 9

The Audi Urban Future Initiative – a long-term project that brings together different visions on how mobility, urban living and the role of the transportation will change in the coming years – debuts in New York City at Openhouse Gallery, May 7 through 9. In a 50-foot interactive exhibit called "Project New York," five emerging NYC-based architects will present concepts of a futurist Manhattan as part of the New Museum's first-ever "Festival of Ideas for the New City" weekend event in downtown Manhattan. The weekend will also feature interactive panels and discussions with architects and designers.

"With the Audi Urban Future Initiative we as a globally operating company are exercising social responsibility," explains Peter Schwarzenbauer, board member of AUDI AG for marketing and sales. "In order to convert visions into reality more quickly, our experts are taking part in the debate about the city of the future. At the same time we are networking with experts from other disciplines – and in this way playing our part in shaping the urban future," continues Schwarzenbauer.

"The years ahead may well define new understandings about the future of urban living and mobility," says Johan de Nysschen, President, Audi of America. "So it is a privilege for Audi to kick off a discussion on diverse visions of this future here in New York through the work of the Audi Urban Future Initiative."

"Audi Urban Future: Project New York" envisions a new city based on the award-winning concepts from the inaugural Audi Urban Future Award – hosted in 2010 in Venice, Italy – including the winning entry by J. MAYER H. Architects from Berlin. The project not only offers a glimpse into what the city of the future could look like, but also sparks a conversation around innovation, new ways of communicating, never-before-seen concepts of living spaces, new versions of roadways and infrastructure solutions for the future.

To bring to life these concepts in New York City, Audi partnered with Architizer, one of the leading online communities for architects, to identify five up-and-coming architecture practices, including LEONG LEONG, MATTER PRACTICE, ABRUZZO BODZIAK ARCHITECTS, labDORA and THEVERYMANY, LLC. These five firms have taken the visions of the architects involved in the Audi Urban Future Award 2010 and applied them to the City of New York, resulting in a 50-foot interactive model of Manhattan in the year 2030.

Alongside a view of how the city of the future might look, the project also initiates wide-ranging discussions about urban development, infrastructure and research into the future. "Rather than a competition, Project New York acts as a laboratory to exploit the potential of collaboration, contingency and dissemination to reach beyond the limitations of the single idea, the individual city, and our present time," commented Troy Conrad Therrien and Christopher Barley, who are curating the project for Architizer.

The five original concepts from 2010 Audi Urban Future Award in Venice, Italy, also will be on display at Openhouse Gallery, including entries from: Alison Brooks Architects, Big-Bjarke Ingels Group, Cloud9 Architecture Studio, Diller Scofidio + Renfro, J. MAYER H. Architects and Standardarchitecture.

Audi and the "Festival of Ideas for the New City"

The Audi Urban Future Initiative debuts in New York City as part of the New Museum's "Festival of Ideas for the New City," a major new collaborative initiative involving scores of downtown organizations, from large universities to arts institutions and community groups, working together to effect change. The Festival is a first for New York and will harness the power of the creative community to imagine the future city and explore the ideas destined to shape it. Audi is supporting the Festival as lead sponsor.

Events that will take place throughout the weekend include:

Audi Urban Future: Project New York -- The 50-foot interactive model of Manhattan in 2030 will be on display at Openhouse Gallery (201 Mulberry St. in New York City) on Saturday, May 7 from Noon to 7 p.m., and Sunday, May, 8 and Monday, May 9 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. To find out more about the Audi Urban Future Initiative, visit
Draw Think Tank: Emerging Territories of Movement 15x180 Manifestos – During the Festival, Audi will join with the innovative architectural institution Storefront for Art and Architecture and interdisciplinary thinkers to develop approaches and solutions for urban planning. The event will feature a collective sketch session by means of an iPad app, with the images projected onto the walls of the event venue in real time. "Draw Think Tank" will take place on Saturday, May 7 at 5 p.m. at SpaceBuster. For further information about Storefront for Art and Architecture, visit
Audi Urban Future: Project New York Talks – Architizer and Audi will host a discussion forum with important pioneering New York thinkers from the fields of design and architecture. Together the participants will consider new findings and practical implementation in relation to future-oriented urbanity and mobility. The talk takes place on Monday, May 9 from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Openhouse Gallery (201 Mulberry St. in New York City). For further information about the project and its participants, visit

For further information about the "Festival of Ideas for the New City," visit

About Audi of America

Audi of America, Inc. and its U.S. dealers offer a full line of German-engineered luxury vehicles. AUDI AG is among the most successful luxury automotive brands globally. During 2010 Audi was the top performing luxury brand in Europe, and broke all-time company sales records in the U.S. Over the next few years, AUDI AG will invest nearly $16 billion on new products and technologies. Visit or for more information regarding Audi vehicle and business issues.

About the New Museum

The New Museum is the only museum in New York City exclusively devoted to contemporary art. Founded in 1977, the New Museum was conceived as a center for exhibitions, information, and documentation about living artists from around the world.

From its beginnings as a one-room office on Hudson Street to the inauguration of its first freestanding, dedicated building, designed by SANAA, on the Bowery in 2007, the New Museum continues to be a hub of new art and new ideas and is a place of ongoing experimentation about what art and arts institutions can be in the twenty-first century.

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Topics: audi



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