Ray Gastil holds the David Lewis/Heinz Endowments Directorship of Urban Design and Regional Engagement. In this role, he directs the Remaking Cities Institute (RCI) and teaches architecture and urban design.
Gastil previously served as the Pittsburgh City Planning Director from 2014 to 2019, where he led initiatives to improve neighborhood planning, resilient communities, comprehensive planning, affordable and inclusive housing, waterfront planning and urban design, open space and the public realm, and complete streets. He held similar positions in Seattle and in the Manhattan Office of the New York City Department of City Planning. He was the founding Executive Director of the Van Alen Institute in New York City from 1995 to 2004. In this role he led exhibitions, publications, and design competitions, including Open: New Designs for Public Space and Beyond the Edge: New York’s New Waterfront. Earlier, he served as transit-oriented and regional design director for Regional Plan Association.
He has lectured and published widely on urban design, urban development, and waterfronts. His recent publications include Success Looks Different Now: Design and Cultural Vitality in Lower Manhattan. From 2011 to 2013, Gastil served as Visiting Professor and Chair in Design Innovation at Penn State University, leading seminars, symposia, and studios on campuses, waterfronts, and urban innovation. He has also taught architecture and urban design at the University of Pennsylvania, Pratt Institute, Carnegie Mellon University, Pennsylvania State University, and University of California, Berkeley. Gastil is a graduate of Yale University with a Master of Architecture from Princeton University.