Loading Events
  • International Waterfronts Panel 5: Penang BiodiverCity, Malaysia and India Basin, San Francisco

    << All Events

    International Waterfronts Panel 5: Penang BiodiverCity, Malaysia and India Basin, San Francisco

    Thursday, October 1, 2020 @ 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm PDT

    The AIASF International Practice Committee, with the support of the Urban Design + Infrastructure Committee presents a series of discussions on Waterfront Design.

    Our fifth session in the series will include International Waterfront project, “Penang BiodiverCity, Malaysia and India Basin, San Francisco”

    Thanks to Dri Design‘s Gold-level sponsorship of this series, and Arup‘s Bronze-level sponsorship of this session, the first 73 registrations for this program were complimentary.


    The events in this series are exclusively available online during Covid-19 pandemic until the reopening of the AIASF facilities. Please register below to gain access to the Zoom Panel Discussion.

    BIG’s Jeremy Alain Siegel will present Penang BiodiverCity in Malaysia alongside Bionic’s Marcel Wilson and BUILD:’s Lou Vasquez presenting India Basin project in San Francisco. Sarah Dennis Phillips of Tishman Speyer will be moderating this session as the panel discusses best practices around design and delivery of large-scale waterfront developments followed by Q&A.

    This session offers an exchange of ideas around very complex and multi-phased project typologies. We present this at a time when reduced Port activity, underutilized land and sea-level rise present unique development opportunities and challenges to San Francisco’s waterfronts. San Francisco is one of the world’s most well-known and storied global waterfront cities, but it now faces significant challenges in protecting its historic assets, improving resilience, activating and improving access along its diverse waterfront edge. International cities can offer lessons learned through their successful waterfront planning, design and development. This event aims to showcase some of these projects to the AIA community in San Francisco by featuring multidisciplinary teams from major waterfront developments.

    These presentations from international practices on global waterfront projects will offer valuable lessons for current challenges facing on the City of San Francisco’s waterfront.




    AIASF and the International Practice Committee would like to thank Dri Design for their Gold-level sponsorship of this series, and Arup for their Bronze-level sponsorship of this session.




    Thanks to the generous support from Dri Design and Arup, the first 73 registrations for this program were complimentary.


    Learning Objectives

    After attending this program, participants will be able to:

    1. Identify risks and opportunities that come with large-scale coastal development.
    2. Balance triple bottom-line considerations – Economy, Ecology, Society – in comprehensive planning.
    3. Integrate urban, landscape, and architectural design.
    4. Employ place-based climatic and other strategies in a tropical context.


    Featured Projects

    Penang BiodiverCity
    Presenters: Jeremy Alain Siegel
    Masterplan/Architecture: BIG
    Client: Penang State Government

    BIG, Hijjas and Ramboll have been selected as winners of Penang State Government’s international competition to design a masterplan for Penang BiodiverCity, providing Penangites with approximately 4.6km of public beaches, 600 acres of parks and a 25km waterfront. Our masterplan proposal – BiodiverCity – supports the Penang2030 vision with a clear focus on livability, on stimulating a socially and economically inclusive development, and on environmental sustainability for future generations. BiodiverCity will be a new sustainable, global destination where cultural, ecological and economic growth is secured and where people and nature co-exist in one of the most biodiverse places on the planet at the southern shore of Penang Island.

    Penang’s vast biodiversity spans various topographies and protected environments which in recent years have seen its coastal zones and natural habitats disrupted by urban developments. In contrast, BiodiverCity is conceived as an Urban Mosaic of three diverse islands, and a set of urban design guidelines for mixing programs, addressing pedestrian and mobility networks, building sustainably and harvesting resources. The three islands bring together mixed-use districts of 15,000 to 18,000 residents across 50 to 500 acres, and a continuous 50 to 100m buffer around each district, establishing habitat connectivity and supporting edge ecologies in reserves, parks, corridors and urban plazas.

    Jeremy Alain Siegel, AICP, Associate-in-Charge at BIG NYC, will discuss the project in the context of BIG’s developing body of work in urban infrastructure and planning.

    India Basin, San Francisco
    Presenters: Marcel Wilson & Lou Vasquez
    Landscape Architect: Bionic Landscape
    Client: BUILD:

    India Basin is a post industrial waterfront in a high tech city. It is the transformation from a feral and forgotten place to a new expansion of the city enabled with a super-natural landscape designed for the future. Over 7 acres will be dedicated to open space and coastal wetlands designed to be resilient to shaocks and changes over time. The shoreline is designed to adapt over time to sea level rise through living shorelines. The team worked closely with Bay Agencies to reframe policies on waterfront development and coastal adaption.


    About the Moderator

    Sarah Dennis Phillips
    Senior Director, Tishman Speyer

    Sarah serves as a Senior Director at Tishman Speyer, having joined the firm in 2019. Between 2005 and 2019, Sarah held key real estate positions with the City & County of San Francisco. Most recently, Sarah served as the Deputy Director of Development for the City of San Francisco, managing the City’s interests in major public-private development projects, and serving as a key advisor on planning, land use and development issues in San Francisco. Sarah negotiated and managed the approval of key public and private initiatives like the Central SOMA Plan and Forest City’s Pier 70 project along San Francisco’s southern waterfront, and initiated numerous housing initiatives under the Mayor. Previously, Sarah managed the Citywide (long-range) Planning Division within the San Francisco Planning Department.


    About the Speakers

    Jeremy Alain Siegel
    Associate, BIG

    Jeremy has been working with Bjarke Ingels and BIG since the establishment of its New York office in 2010, and brings a focus on issues of urbanism, landscape, infrastructure, and climate change. Jeremy led the BIG team in its winning “Big U” proposal for the federal Rebuild by Design competition, and now leads urban design of the subsequent East Side Coastal Resiliency project, BQ-Park proposal, and other complex planning efforts for a variety of clients. Jeremy is a Forefront Fellow with the NYC Urban Design Forum, a 2017 IdeasCity Fellow, and has taught at Cornell University, the University of Pennsylvania, and Parsons School of Constructed Environments.

    Marcel Wilson
    Founding Principal & Design Director, Bionic

    Marcel Wilson is a licensed landscape architect and the founder and design director of Bionic based in San Francisco, Ca. As Design Director, Marcel leads the design of all of the firm’s projects with an inventive spirit and personal investment. He is an agile and inventive designer, a skilled and inspiring communicator, and a talented collaborator and strategist on projects at all scales and levels of complexity.

    As a designer he is distinguished as a creative force in complex landscape projects through his broad expertise in landscape technology which ranges from large scale infrastructure systems to micro scale material applications. His portfolio of design and management experience includes waterfronts, infrastructure, universities, high-rise construction, landscapes on structure, and post-industrial sites. He has led the design and management of landscape projects in the United States and Asia.

    Lou Vasquez
    Founding Partner & Principal, BUILD:

    Over the last 20 years, Lou and his partners have grown BUILD: into one of the preeminent real estate development firms in San Francisco. BUILD: focuses on creating complete communities that address the cultural, social and physical environments that they will inhabit. Each of BUILD:’s projects is a result of years of planning, negotiating, listening, responding, socializing, then starting the process all over again. BUILD:’s portfolio of over 3,000 homes currently being entitled, financed or built demonstrates the success born of perseverance and an unstinting optimism.

    Through his volunteer work as a board member of Habitat for Humanity and as a founding board member of the Mission Preparatory School, Lou is committed to ensuring that San Francisco remains a diverse city providing opportunities for its most vulnerable citizens.


    Coming up next in this series:

    • Online Panel: Waterfront Project Presentation, November, 2020
    • AIASF Waterfronts Symposium, February, 2021
      • Led by the AIASF International Practice Committee and supported by the Urban Design + Infrastructure Committee and their guests, addressing local application of the preceding events.

    For more information about the Committees and their events:


    Share This Event

    • This event has passed.


    Thursday, October 1, 2020
    5:30 pm - 7:00 pm PDT
    Event Categories:
    , , , , ,
    Event Tags:


    Online Event


    AIA San Francisco
    View Organizer Website