Good public spaces enhance community cohesion and promote health, happiness, and wellbeing for all citizens.
It has been with this quote that UN Habitat launched the Global Public Space Programme in an aim to improve the quality of public spaces worldwide. Of course, without doubt, the programme stands for a crucial challenge to make our urbanised world better, but what to do? The ideas on this have been matured and agreements seem to saturate the scope at the recent Habitat III conference held last week in Quito. A list of final set criteria is emerging, but this cannot mean that we’re done… By no means this listing will work if stakeholders do not accept that people gather on a variety of places around the globe, in a variety of cultures, hence not just in those urban spaces which are created by Western idealists’ minds: publicly-owned outdoor space. Continue reading →
The purpose of World Habitat Day, October 5th 2015, is to reflect on the state of our towns and cities, and on the basic right of all to adequate shelter. It is also intended to remind the world that we all have the power and the responsibility to shape the future of our cities and towns. This year the United Nations chose the theme ‘Public Spaces for All designed to live Together’ as very relevant for the Habitat Agenda.
The objectives of World Habitat Day 2015 aim to raise awareness about the need for well designed and managed public spaces and streets. Great to see that one of the key themes of my research group Design of Urban Fabrics takes centre stage also for UN Habitat.