The Municipal Art Society. New York, United States

Urban planning, landmark preservation and community engagement to create a more livable city


Founded in 1893, MAS NYC is a non-profit organization dedicated to create a more livable city through urban planning and design, landmark preservation and community engagement. The organization promotes the city’s economic vitality, cultural and social diversity and environmental sustainability. MAS has created commissions and civic organizations to achieve a high quality of life in all New York’s communities.


  • Raised awareness about the need for new rules and regulations to protect public assets like light, air, open space, avoiding supertall towers and skyscrapers
  • Supported the restoration and conservation of public statues and street murals within New York city
  • Trained and empowered +2.500 people through the Livable Neighborhoods Program since 2007
  • Opening of the Greenacre Reference Library, a research library with more than 3.000 books and reports and approximately 2.000 publications produced by MAS
  • Empowered communities to be advocates of their neighborhoods building their capacity to understand and influence land-use planning
  • Protected the Garment District by launching a proposal to remove the zoning requirement in the Garment Center and redevelop Bush Terminal in Brooklyn’s Sunset Park, as a new hub for the garment industry
  • Organized regular events and Walking Tour in the city

Did you know?

In late 2001, MAS worked with a number of artists and designers to create The Tribute in light,  a memorial to the victims of September 11 that takes place each year. Ten years later, MAS transferred the project to the newly-opened National September 11 Memorial & Museum, which has continued to present it annually on the anniversary of the attacks.

Sustainability and Replicability

With more than 120 years of existence, MAS has participated in number of urban initiatives to save or restore historical buildings, and to include New Yorkers in the city’s life. They regularly organize walking tours through the city to explore it in a new way. Citizens can donate, become members or just participant in the enhancement of the city.

Lessons learned

The vitality and diversity of a city goes through the preservation and design of its architecture, but also through its inhabitants and their educated desire to be engaged as the best advocates for the city.

Take action

Learn more about the Municipal Art Society of New York
Find out about all the events MAS organizes in New York.

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