James H. Ward, III

James H. Ward, III

Brooklyn, NY, US



Much of the existing infrastructure arteries that crisscross the nation is past their intended life spans, typically about 50 years. In the 53 years of its existence the interstate has expanded to the largest highway system in the world at 46,876 miles. Despite the massive amount of infrastructure
repairs and replacements, the socioeconomic condition created by the initial instillation of the system which scared the long standing neighborhoods. Employing the tool of eminent domain, federal and state governments forcibly removed large swaths of homes permanently severing largely minority communities. In every state there are ethnic neighborhoods are economically unhealthy; lacking adequate commercial space and neighborhoods that foster a sense of community.

The goal of this thesis is to  develop an adaptive reuse system for urban infrastructure. Through the creation of  this catalyst in the neighborhood to enrich environment in the arts and career oriented services, to foster a positive recreational activities that lead to a positive and well rounded community at large.


This new “promise neighborhood” will be centered around an education in the Arts; preforming and visual. Working within the guides of the Harlem Children Zone (HCZ) principle to “reweave the social fabric of Harlem”, this new community initiative will  be a venue for the creativity of this diverse and talented community. This is the community that birthed both Jazz and the Hip-Hop culture. This center aims to cultivate the creativity and innovation of the youth and the overall neighborhood.  In the scheme of the HCZ pipeline the new program will begin at a young age with an education in the Arts both domestic and international, with an end goal of producing highly knowledgeable and talented individuals that will go on to higher education at institutions such as Juilliard School of the Arts, Berkeley College of Music, and Pratt Institute.  

Read more

Status: Unbuilt
Location: New York, NY, US