#9 Hugh Hardy

Founding partner, H3 Hardy Collaboration Architecture, OHNY Practicing Partner and site & program sponsor
Lives in the Flatiron District, Manhattan

What is your relationship to New York City? I was born in Spain and grew up in the suburbs of New York. I was allowed to visit the city as a kid. I would come on the train by myself. I fell in love with the City and moved here once I finished college.

How and when did you learn about OHNY? I actually don’t remember but it was during the early years. I just remember thinking what a great idea! You were one of the first leaders in the design community who helped encourage fellow architects to participate in OHNY. Why? Because it is inclusive – it is for the public. It includes everybody and the range of ages and professional interests are ENORMOUS.

So far, what has been your favorite OHNY site and/or program? I should pick something a little less obvious. I would say the MTA Substation tour.

If you could gain access to any site in New York that you wanted, what would that site be? I would love to get inside the New York Life Building with the gold pyramid. I have always wondered what it would be like to go inside and up to the top. I imagine it would be a similar experience to the tours I did for OHNY when we went up above in Radio City Music Hall. It was a completely different experience to up that high, and looking down into the auditorium.

As it’s the holiday season, what is your favorite holiday spot in New York? I think my favorite is the experience of walking down Fifth Avenue during the holiday season. It is glorious.

What is the best-kept secret about New York City? That it is series of communities – it is many small towns all at once.

What sites do you have on your “to do” list for the 2012 OHNY Weekend? That list would be endless! In particular, the Battery Maritime Building and all spaces along the waterfront. All of the sites along the water should be pursued. Where the city and the water meet is where “new” New York is starting.

If you could plan it, how would you celebrate OHNY’s Tenth Anniversary? Well, exactly what you are doing! I think it’s important to stress the idea of “opening doors” to generate the idea of public access. Although, I don’t know how you would do that. How about a huge street party – a waterfront party. Some others have suggested that we throw a big party somewhere amazing like in the former Cloud Club in the Chrysler building. Yes, but that’s only one space, you need to open up a lot of doors at the same time. Maybe a party with continuous access and open doors along one long street.

You’ve supported and participated by providing countless guided tours of your projects to OHNY’s audience during the Annual Weekends and year round, what is the thing you love most about OHNY? That it is for everybody. That it is cross-generational and cross disciplinary. It is not an event just for architects or developers or planners, it is for everyone. The audience is REALLY diverse and that is very valuable.

Why should people give to OHNY?
To keep it going and help it expand in order to increase the public’s awareness of the great resources of New York City!

Thanks for your time, Hugh!

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