CityWorks Fellows are changemakers, working together to improve the city of Providence. Fellows learn to use the design process as a powerful force for positive community change.

The guiding theme for this year’s program is Resilient Providence, with the goal of promoting community resilience in the face of climate change by inspiring new ways for community members to connect with one another and with our Downtown Providence parks and rivers.

Our 2018-19 CityWorks Fellows will oversee the creation of a design competition for a public project along the downtown Providence Riverwalk, will select the winning design proposal, and will coordinate design and fabrication of the installation. Our inaugural cohort of fellows will also play an important role in shaping the future of this exciting new pilot program.


Could YOU be a CityWorks Fellow?

You are an engaged community member, eager to participate in shaping public space.

You have unique skills and talents to share with the CityWorks team.

You’ll learn how to use the design process strategically to innovate in response to community needs, and how to forge successful partnerships to navigate the creation of projects in the public realm.

You’ll enjoy special lectures and intimate conversations with creative placemaking experts and community leaders.

You’ll join a community of collaborators from different realms who are dedicated to learning from one another in a connected cohort.

You’ll gain the satisfaction of seeing your work realized in the form of an iconic new installation in a highly public space in Providence


We are looking for:

  • Community Organizers

  • Community Developers

  • Community Members

  • Artists and Makers

  • Relationship Builders

  • Environmentalists

  • Scientists / Climate Change Experts

  • Policy shapers

  • Communicators / Marketing Professionals

  • Graphic Designers

  • Spatial Designers (Architects, Landscape Architects)

  • Builders

  • YOU!

You should be:

  • Living and/or working in Providence

  • Curious, open, and collaborative

  • Eager to join a community of changemakers

  • Ready to contribute your skills and time to make the project a success

  • Able to commit to the dates and times of every workshop, listed below



CityWorks is led by Manuel Cordero Alvarado, co-founder of DownCity Design, who works as a School Construction Planner for the RI Department of Education and as an adjunct professor in the RISD Architecture Department.

Born and raised in Puerto Rico, Manuel received his undergraduate degree from Yale University and earned a Master’s of Architecture degree from the UC Berkeley. He is a licensed architect in Rhode Island, with several years of experience in large-scale institutional projects, with a focus on educational and community planning projects. Manuel is an active member of the Providence community, and is passionate about broadening participation in shaping the built environment.

Manuel headshot 2015.JPG


CityWorks Fellows will meet weekly on Tuesday evenings, from 6-8:30 pm. Fellows must commit to attending every workshop. Meetings take place at the DownCity Design Studio, located at 425 West Fountain Street on the West Side of Providence. Light dinner will be provided at each workshop.


December 18

January 8

January 15

November 13

November 20

December 4

December 11

Part Two: EVOLVE

February 26

March 5

March 12

March 19

Part Three: MAKE

May 14

May 21

April 23

April 30

May 7

Applications due October 21, 2018. Applicants will be notified by October 31.

Thank you to our sponsors!