During a workshop led by USC student organization Architecture + Advocacy, high school students participated in an exercise to design spaces for their communities. Some thought up designs for soup kitchens and gardens — large structures that add value to the places where they live. A+A programming director and co-founder Lauren Jian was particularly struck by one student’s chief focus on designing an accessible public bathroom, which Jian said encompassed the organization’s vision: empowering students to create equitable communities and advocate for themselves.
Co-founder Erin Light said spatial injustice involves looking at how architects have designed and created inequitable spaces. Issues such as food deserts and unequal school funding are the result of inequitable design, she said, which is why the zip code into which someone is born heavily shapes their access to opportunity and social mobility.