Gia Biagi

Gia Biagi is Principal of Urbanism & Civic Impact at Studio Gang, where she leads the office's urban design and planning work. This part of the practice unites revitalizing cities with emphasis on ecology, mobility, and community with renewed focus on how to reimagine public assets, infrastructure, and institutions to be more relevant, connected, and responsive to the people and places where they reside.

Biagi’s career, spanning both private practice and public service, has established her as a visionary leader in community-centered, equity-focused, and environmentally responsible urban planning and design. From 2019 to 2023, she served as Commissioner of Chicago’s Department of Transportation, where she delivered hundreds of innovative transportation projects citywide and created a nation-leading strategic plan focused on equitable, safe, and sustainable mobility and transformational neighborhood investments. Prior to that, she led planning and design at Chicago’s Park District and held various other private and public sector roles where her work focused on neighborhood revitalization through planning, programs, policies, and capital investments.

At Studio Gang she has led projects such as Civic Commons, which reimagines how public assets can foster inclusion and economic opportunity; Memphis Riverfront Concept, which proposes a vision for six miles of parks and city fabric along the Mississippi River; the Seaholm Waterfront Concept Study, reimagines a dormant infrastructural asset on Austin’s Lady Bird Lake as a celebrated part of civic life; Neighborhood Schools Reuse, which grounds ideas for the renewal of closed schools in the needs and aspirations of residents who live nearby; and New York Neighborhood Activation, which proposes a community-centered approach to designing for neighborhood wellness, safety, and stability.

Gia serves on the Shared-Use Mobility Center’s board of directors and was previously appointed Secretary of the National Association of City Transportation Officials and served the boards of the City Parks Alliance and NeighborSpace. She is also a member of Lambda Alpha International, an honorary society for the study of land economics. Gia earned her Master of Urban Planning and Policy from the University of Illinois at Chicago and holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Michigan.

Related

Now

Atlanta Agent — "What ‘The Stitch’ needs, according to land use experts"

Atlanta Agent — "What ‘The Stitch’ needs, according to land use experts"

Principal of Urbanism and Civic Impact Gia Biagi participated in presentation advocating for a $400 million development in Atlanta known as "The Stitch" as a member of the Urban Land Institute’s Technical Advisory Panel.

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Gia Biagi at TEDx Road Town 2019

Gia Biagi at TEDx Road Town 2019

March 23, 2019
BVI International Arbitration Centre
Road Town, Tortola
British Virgin Islands

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Memphis Flyer — "Riverfront Reboot: New leaders and New Plans for Memphis' Waterfront"

Memphis Flyer — "Riverfront Reboot: New leaders and New Plans for Memphis' Waterfront"

"To transform the flat, wide-open park...MRPP picked Studio Gang and SCAPE... to help the park 'reach its full civic potential.'"

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Gia Biagi at SXSW Eco, “Designing Water: Creative Minds Rethink Resiliency”

SXSW Eco 2015 — Designing Water: Creative Minds Rethink Resiliency

October 5, 2015
Austin Convention Center 6A

Rebuild by Design and HUD’s National Disaster Resilience Competition sparked deep thinking about the relationship of cities to water. In a panel discussion at SXSW Eco, Gia Biagi, Studio Gang's Senior Director of Urbanism and Civic Impact, joined resiliency experts to discuss creative ideas to build climate resiliency into city and county infrastructure around the country.

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Gia Biagi on The Interview Show: Architecture Edition

November 6, 2015
The Hideout
Chicago

Studio Gang’s Senior Director of Urbanism and Civic Impact Gia Biagi talked cities, Polis Station, and more with The Interview Show’s Mark Bazer.

Presented in partnership with the Chicago Architecture Biennial, the Chicago Architecture Foundation, and the Association of Architecture Organizations

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Studio Gang Expands Urban Design and Planning Practice

Studio Gang expands urban design and planning practice

Studio Gang is pleased to announce the expansion of its urban design and planning practice with the addition of Gia Biagi, Senior Director of Urbanism and Civic Impact. Gia, who serves as the Studio’s principal planner, is widely regarded as a thought leader in the preservation, enhancement, and expansion of urban public space. She has spent more than a decade helping governments and non-profit organizations make smart investments in urban environments.

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GOOD — “What Navigating Disney World Can Teach Us About Our Cities”

GOOD -- "What Navigating Disney World Can Teach Us About Our Cities"

Studio Gang’s Gia Biagi takes on friction in our urban spaces.

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Kresge Podcaster #11 — “Civic Assets: Reveal, Connect and Engage with Gia Biagi”

Civic Commons

On this episode of the Kresge Podcaster, Gia Biagi discusses how promoting, connecting, and using a set of civic assets—not just parks and libraries, but streets and even police stations—can produce new value for residents of urban neighborhoods.

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Reimagining the Civic Commons — “Reveal, Connect, and Engage: How Design Thinking Can Help Cities”

Civic Commons

Studio Gang Principal Gia Biagi highlights the Studio’s Civic Commons project, aimed at making public spaces more relevant, useful, and potent.

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