Geslin Reeba George is a sustainable urban planning specialist, an architect and an educator. While growing up in Riyadh (Saudi Arabia) in the 1990’s, she was fascinated by the way the city grew in the middle of the desert. This experience in contrast with her yearly childhood vacations at her grandparents’ home in a lush green village of Kerala led to a keen interest in the built environment and obtain a scholarship from the Government of India to pursue a Bachelor’s degree in Architecture from National Institute of Technology Tiruchirappalli. As a student, she actively participated, led and won the ‘New World’ Trophy and ‘Analysis’ Trophy of two consecutive National Level Architecture Competitions (NASA). After graduating in 2012, she gained practical experience working with Advani & Associates, Bengaluru on residential and institutional projects and realized that even a small development has an impact on its surroundings on an environmental, social and economic level. To understand the intricacies and dynamics of neighborhoods and cities, she pursued a Master’s Degree in Regional Planning from Cornell University.
At Cornell, the inspiring and facilitative learning experience under the guidance and mentorship of Prof. Jennifer Minner and Robert W Balder (Executive Director – Gensler Family Cornell NYC Center), and the opportunities of teaching & research assistantship encouraged her to pivot towards research and pedagogy to inform on-ground practice. She also worked on collaborative urban planning projects with the New York City Economic Development Cooperation, the City of Ithaca, and the Town of Lansing as well as intern with the New York City Department of City Planning.
She volunteered with the Tanzania Development Trust in mapping villages of rural Tanzania before she made the move back to India in 2017. She then worked in the Departments of Architecture & Planning at the Nitte School of Architecture, Planning and Design – Bengaluru and mentored students (especially the first batch) in their coursework, competitions and their applications for pursuing a Master’s abroad.
Geslin recently received a special mention for the ‘Nurturing Aangans’ Design Competition, 2022 organized by the Cochin Smart Mission Ltd, and an Honorable Mention for the ‘15-min city’ Competition 2021, an international urban planning & design competition where her team illustrated that planning and designing around women and children led to universally vibrant, inclusive and sustainable communities.
Her areas of interest include- sustainable development, designing for women and children, place-making, and participatory community planning. She is a children’s book enthusiast, loves taking long walks to explore a city, and learning more about people & their culture over a good meal.
Ar. Geslin Reeba George