Marty Zelnik AIA was a rare individual – an architect, teacher, civic leader, prolific writer, observer and outspoken commenter. In all of those rolls, he was always wise, concerned and the consummate gentleman. To those in the profession, Marty was an Architect’s Architect. As Vice President of the Bronx Chapter of the American Institute of Architects, Marty played a significant role in its development, following the footsteps of his father, Simon Zelnik FAIA, a founding member of the Bronx Chapter in 1945. And much to Marty’s delight, worked side by side with his son Bryan Zelnik AIA, a chapter member since 2010.
Marty Zelnik graduated from Brandies University in 1961 having majored in Fine Arts. He graduated form Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture in 1965. He founded the architecture firm Panzel Zelnik Associates and became a full professor of Interior Design at SUNY/Fashion Institute of Technology, where he was chair of the Interior Design Department. He helped his students to be better designers, his colleagues to better teachers, and was a voice in the architecture and interior design community. Marty also co-authored Human Dimension and Interior Space: A Source Book of Design Reference Standards, and Time-Saver Standards for Interior Design and Space Planning.
There has rarely been a zoning or community issue in the Riverdale/Kingsbridge area that Marty did not champion for the public good, be it about building construction, restaurant construction on sidewalks, or on street parking. Marty will be missed by all, and his exuberance will be sadly missed by all of us at AIA Bronx Chapter meetings.
Our members express heartfelt condolences to everyone in the Zelnik family. May Marty rest in peace!
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