Last week, the Rudy Bruner Award for Urban Excellence announced five projects in the running for its 2019 Gold Medal and four Silver Medals. The Gold Medalist will receive $50,000 and Silver Medalists will each receive $10,000 to further the development or improvement of their projects. This year's finalists are located in five cities across four U.S. states. “The five finalists illustrate the shifting role of design in response to the imperatives of social inclusivity and environmental resilience," said Simeon Bruner, a founder of the Bruner Foundation, which bestows the award, and a founding principal of Boston-based Bruner/Cott & Associates, in a press release.

Founded in 1986 and awarded biennially, the Rudy Bruner Award recognizes projects that "contribute to the economic, environmental, and social vitality of American cities," according to the release. The medalists will be decided by a six-person selection committee consisting of New York–based Adrian Benepe, senior vice president and director of city park development for the Trust for Public Land; Brenda Breaux, executive director of the New Orleans Redevelopment Authority; Carol Coletta, president and CEO of the Memphis River Parks Partnership; Marc Norman, associate professor at the Taubman School of Architecture and Urban Planning in Ann Arbor, Mich.; Carol Ross Barney, FAIA, founder and design principal at Chicago-based Ross Barney Architects; and Mayor Libby Schaaf of Oakland, Calif. The committee will begin visiting the project sites and conducting interviews with project participants over the next few months, and winners will be announced in June.

Warren Jagger

Beyond Walls by Beyond Walls
Lynn, Mass.

“The bayou is about 20 to 30 feet lower than the street, and the existing park didn’t feel particularly safe,” says Scott McCready, principal at SWA Group. “Our goal was to introduce a more extensive network of infrastructure  that really invited people in.”
Albert Vecerka/Esto Buffalo Bayou Park

Buffalo Bayou Park by Page and SWA Group
Houston, Texas

Courtesy Looney Ricks Kiss

Crosstown Concourse by Looney Ricks Kiss
Memphis, Tenn.

Michael Wong

Parisite Skatepark by the Tulane School of Architecture's Albert and Tine Small Center for Collaborative Design, Dana Brown & Associates, and Transitional Spaces
New Orleans

Cindy Roller

Sulphur Springs Downtown by Toole Design Group
Sulphur Springs, Texas