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New Lab, Brooklyn Navy Yard. Marvel Architects | © David Sundberg-Esto
New Lab, Brooklyn Navy Yard. Marvel Architects | © David Sundberg-Esto

A Guide to the Best Things to See and Do During NYC's Archtober 2017

Picture of Amber C. Snider
Home & Design Editor
Updated: 29 September 2017

Archtober is back again for its seventh year in what will be a month-long celebration of design and architecture around New York City. We’ve highlighted some of our favorite sites, must-see events, and noteworthy talks so that you can plan ahead for the busy month. Here’s what not to miss at this year’s Archtober 2017 festivities.

SeaGlass Carousel by WXY architecture + urban design| © Filip Wolak

Building of the Day

Archtober’s best-known series, Building of the Day, features an architect-led walking tour every day during the month of October. Visitors will get exclusive insights into the history and architecture of each highlight building, including the Woolworth Residence, Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine, the Brooklyn Grange Rooftop Farm,  New Lab at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, and more.

Building of the Date will be held each day, in various locations, for the entire month of October. Click here for a full calendar of events.

Building of the Day, 4 WTC | Image courtesy of Archtober

Archtober Trivia Night

If trivia is your thing, head over to the Center for Architecture on Thursday, October 12 at either 6pm or 8pm to join your fellow design and architecture lovers for a nerdy night out. Food and drink is included in the $15 admission charge.

Archtober Trivia Night will be held on October 12, 6–8 p.m. Click here to sign-up.

Open House New York

As one of the largest architecture festivals in the entire U.S., Open House New York (OHNY) will “unlock the doors of New York’s most important buildings” for a single weekend. There will be over 200 sites and buildings to explore, including 140+ Open Access Sites, with limited reservations available. A full list of all participating sites and tours will be revealed on October 4, so make sure to keep an eye out.

OHNY will be held in various locations from October 14–October 15. 

New Lab, Brooklyn Navy Yard. Marvel Architects | © David Sundberg-Esto

Cooper Hewitt’s National Design Week

A week-long design celebration begins October 14 at the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum on the Upper East Side, in conjunction with events across the U.S. for National Design Week. Highlights include free museum admission and special programming led by National Design Award winners, a Teen Design Fair on October 17, salon talks with National Design Award winners on the same day, and workshops for children on October 21.

Cooper Hewitt’s National Design Week will take place from October 14–October 22. For more information about reservations, open admissions, and times, click here.

Never Built New York: Curator’s Perspective with Special Guests

The Queens Museum brings you an uncanny glimpse into a New York City that never was. This highly-anticipated exhibit, co-curated by Sam Lubell and Greg Goldin, displays original renderings of buildings that never made it past the drawing board, with 3D visualizations and models to bring to life these “unperformed works.” Just imagine how different our city would’ve been if the subway stopped in the middle of an apartment complex? Pretty revolutionary stuff.

Never Built New York will be held on October 29 from 2–5 p.m. Click here for more information on the talk and tour, or read Culture Trip’s review of Lubell and Goldin’s stunning masterpiece here.

Never Built New York | Courtesy of Metropolis Books

Public Art Fund talk with artist Ai Weiwei and Nicholas Baume

Contemporary artist Ai Weiwei, best known for his socially conscious and politically provocative work, will give a talk with Public Art Fund Director & Chief Curator Nicholas Baume in The Great Hall of The Cooper Union on October 12. It’s sure to be an engaging, thought-provoking evening, inspired by the international migration crisis and current global geopolitical landscape.

Ai Weiwei and Nicholas Baume will be speaking on October 12 at 6.30 p.m. For more information, click here.

Classic Harbor Line Architectural Boat Tours

So maybe a walking tour is not really your ideal way to soak in all the architectural beauty of our great isle. Why not try it on a boat? In partnership with AIA New York, Classic Harbor Line hosts its fifth season of daily boat tours around Manhattan throughout the month of October. Get the inside scoop on harbor monuments, the Statue of Liberty, and major sites along Lower Manhattan.

Classic Harbor Line Architectural Boat Tours will be held at various times throughout the entire month of October. For tickets and more information, click here.

Classic Harbor Line Architectural Boat Tours | Image courtesy of AIA New York

National September 11 Memorial & Museum

The September 11 Memorial & Museum will present “Trees of Steel: The World Trade Center Tridents,” a lecture on the architecture and design of the World Trade Center.

Trees of Steel: The World Trade Center Tridents” will be help from October 5–October 26 at 12 p.m.

AIA New York, Everything Water 4.0: Post-Sandy Symposium

AIA New York will host a day-long symposium on October 21 to present a range of ideas engaged with climate change, urban response, creative interventions, and water-related disasters. Panelists and speakers include mayors, scientists, architects, artists, and more.

Everything Water 4.0: Post-Sandy Symposium will be held on October 21 from 9 a.m.–5 p.m. For more information, click here.

Brooklyn Grange Rooftop Farm | Image courtesy of AIA New York © Anastasia Cole Plakias

Workplace Wednesdays

In a brand-new series presented by Archtober, Workplace Wednesdays takes the public into some of the coolest office spaces in NYC, led by a different architecture firm each week. The only problem is, tickets are completely sold out—but that doesn’t mean you can’t reach out to see any cancellations come up or ask for standby. Participating architectural firms include SHoP Architects, Snøhetta, and Studio Libeskind.

Workplace Wednesdays will take place each week for the entire month of October. Click here for more info.

Roy and Diana Vagelos Education Center by Diller Scofidio + Renfro in collaboration with Gensler | © Iwan Baan

For more info on all Archtober events, which runs throughout the month of October, click here