The New York City-based Rockefeller Foundation has announced the creation of the Jane Jacobs Medal to honor the late activist, author, and urbanist whose vision for the urban environment has significantly contributed to the vibrancy of New York City.
Administered by the Municipal Art Society, the 2007 Jane Jacobs Medals will be accompanied by prizes totaling $200,000. One award will recognize an individual's leadership and lifetime contributions to the field of urban planning, while the other will recognize new ideas and activism that reflect Jacobs's ideals. Nominations can be submitted electronically until March 2. The first recipients will be announced in June.
Jacobs died in April 2006 at the age of 89, but in the 1950s the then-obscure resident of Greenwich Village received a grant through the Rockefeller Foundation's Urban Design Studies program that enbaled her to write her seminal work, The Death and Life of Great American Cities. "Jacobs brought fresh thinking to the relationship between the needs of living communities and the urban environment," said Darren Walker, Rockefeller's vice president of foundation initiatives. "To honor her indomitable spirit and life's work, the Rockefeller Foundation has established the Jane Jacobs Medal to celebrate individuals whose accomplishments exemplify 'Jacobsian' principles and practices in New York City today."