Emily Weidenhof is the Director of Public Space at NYC DOT working closely with community organizations throughout the five boroughs to transform their streets as public space. Her focus for over a decade has been the role of the public realm in strengthening communities from plazas and shared streets to retooling the curb lane and innovative programming and concessions. Most recently Emily lead on the creation of pandemic response programs to support neighborhoods and businesses citywide including Open Restaurants and Open Streets. Emily has worked as an Architect and Urban Designer in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York including at the NYC Department of City Planning. She has researched and edited two publications with The Earth Institute at Columbia University on the potential impacts of natural gas extraction to the Upper Delaware community and on strategies for maintaining sustainable agriculture in the Catskill Region. She has researched and lectured on the importance of open space in the chawls in Dharavi in Mumbai, India and the role of streets and public space in preserving cultural heritage in rapidly developing Asian cities such as Hong Kong. Emily received her B. Arch from the Pennsylvania State University and her M.S. in Arch & Urban Design from Columbia University where she was an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Architecture and taught for five years with the MSAUD Studio.