MetroLAB is a Public Interest Design / Build program within the University of Cincinnati School of Architecture and Interior Design (SAID) in the College of Design, Architecture, Art and Planning (DAAP) that engages students and faculty from SAID, DAAP and across UC with local and regional communities and partners that would not otherwise have access to design.

Our intent is to design, construct, research and evaluate innovative projects that support the infrastructure and development of the built environment through direct engagement with those who are impacted by our projects.

MetroLAB focuses on three principles:

1. learning through the process of making

2. applied research and innovation

3. community engagement and impact



MetroLAB was initiated by SAID Director William Williams in fall 2010 and Michael Zaretsky was asked to lead and direct the program. The first MetroLAB studio was taught in fall 2011 by Associate Professor of Practice Terry Boling. As of summer, 2017, eight SAID faculty have taught MetroLAB studios addressing more than a dozen projects with community groups in Cincinnati neighborhoods including Walnut Hills, Lower Price Hill, Over the Rhine and Clifton. 

We are proudly partnered with the Taft Research Center, the Walnut Hills Redevelopment Foundation, Findlay Market Foundation, Seven Hills Neighborhood House and many others.

You are welcome to contact us directly for design services or speaking engagements.



Michael Zaretsky









MetroLAB would like to thank our partners and sponsors for their indispensable support.

University of Cincinnati




findlay market


university of cincinnati research institute




seven hills neighborhood houses


louder than a bomb




people's liberty


taft research center


walnut hills redevelopment foundation