Located on Rockaway Beach Boulevard, Stilt City will be an art community space created in a vacant bungalow, which had been flooded by Superstorm Sandy in 2012. Founded by Brooklyn-based artist Robyn Renee Hasty, Stilt City will serve as an art and exhibition center that will sponsor a residency program for local artists. Hasty and J/GA envision the reconstruction of the building as a model for post-Sandy building, both in terms of its architectural strategies and in terms of the impact it will have on the social resiliency of the community, as well as the urban fabric. The design approach is focused on providing alternative rebuilding strategies for structures that cannot be elevated and offer low-impact design features that will safeguard against future floods.

“The project was born out of the belief that artistic vision is essential to communities after crisis,” says Hasty. Through the assistance of Architecture for Humanity and The 1% Program of Public Architecture, Hasty and J/GA have teamed up to reimagine the bungalow as a flexible art and community space.

The Stilt City collaboration has provided “the opportunity to demonstrate resilient design that preserves the existing character of the Rockaways,” says J/GA principal Stephan Jaklitsch. “Design has the potential to act or counteract to repair the social fabric … we had to frame the term ‘resiliency’ and understand that it is about social vulnerability as much as it is about the built environment,” adds J/GA principal Mark Gardner. “We are able to influence the urban and social fabric in a positive way by opening the structure as much as possible to engage the community,” concludes Jaklitsch.

To raise funds for Stilt City, a crowd-funding Kickstarter campaign will launch on November 20, 2014 with a fundraising goal of $100,000. These funds will be allocated towards construction and program development for the art center. Donation rewards for the campaign will include one-of-a-kind pieces of art, as well as experiences and events.

Learn more about Stilt City and the upcoming Kickstarter campaign at