Brett Merriam

Hometown: Dallas, TX

Academic Background: Vassar College, B.A. in Urban Studies

Favorite City/Place: Jacob Riis Beach in NYC

What were you doing before Harvard? Before Harvard, I was a project manager for a placemaking firm in NYC. We worked with city governments, private developers, and non-profit groups to design and operate public spaces – like parks and plazas – in cities around the country.

What aspects of planning are you most interested in? I’m drawn to the intersections between physical planning and community development. For me, urban planning is inherently material, so I focus on how urban design interacts, mutually supports, or potentially conflicts with capacity-building for communities.