The ULI Urban Open Space Award recognizes vibrant parks and open spaces that have been transformative in promoting healthy, sustainable, and equitable outcomes in their communities. Projects are evaluated on their design, programming, community benefits, partnerships and funding, and demonstration value. This year, five projects were selected as finalists from among the 49 submissions from five countries, including West 8’s Madrid Rio Park, Madrid, Spain, and the other four finalists projects are:

— Levy Park, Houston, Texas
— Baxi River Forest Island, Changsha, China
— Quequechan River Rail Trail, Fall River, Massachusetts
— Ricardo Lara Park, Lynwood, California

The jury for the award included Lynn S. Carlton, vice president and regional leader of planning at HOK; Antonio Fiol-Silva, founding principal of SITIO architecture + urbanism; Glenda E. Hood, cofounder of TriSect; Mehul J. Patel, chief operating officer of Midwood Investment & Development; Mitchell J. Silver, commissioner of the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation; and F. Karl Zavitkovsky of Drever Capital Management. Stuart I. Ackerberg, chief executive officer of the Ackerberg Group, was the jury chair.

The first ULI Urban Open Space Award was given to St. Louis’s Citygarden in 2011, recognizing the project for the relationship it incorporated among art, landscape, imaginative seating, and water features, which had universal appeal and created a new focal point for downtown St. Louis.