Keynote Speakers

Maxim Atayants, Architect, St. Petersburg, RUSSIA. Creating a
New Classical Urban Fabric 

 

 

 

 

Prof. Mariano Bizzarri, Dept. of Experimental Medicine, Systems
Biology Group, University La Sapienza, Rome, ITALY.  Urban
development and Health: how the microenvironmental niche
increases cancer risk

 

 

 

Mayor Jim Brainard, Carmel, IN. Member of President's Climate
Task Force. Climate Change and Urban Design

 

 

 

 

Mirko Busto, M5S' member, Environmental Commission in the
Italian Government Chamber of Deputies. He is an Environmental
Engineer, expert on Agriculture and the Environment, fighting
against global warming and CO2. Life-Cycle Assessment to
Conserve and Protect the Environment.

 

 

Father Alejandro Crosthwaite, Dean of Faculty of Social Sciences,
Pontificia Universitá San Tommaso, VATICAN CITY. How Pope                         
Francis' Laudato Si Relates to City Planning

 

 

 

 

Richard M. Economakis, Architect, Professor, University of Notre
Dame, South Bend, IN, USA. Streets of Hope: Outlining an Urban,
Environmentally Responsible Approach to Housing EU Asylum-
Seekers

The unfolding refugee crisis has prompted governments to adopt
easy-to-build,  temporary housing types to house the waves of
migrants while their requests for asylum are processed. However,
even the most efficient shelters currently being produced are
guaranteed in their aggregate to cause significant damage to the                                                         environment. This paper will discuss the nature of this damage,
including carbon dioxide emissions during manufacture, and toxicity
to the earth resulting from disposal.   

A proposal will be presented which envisages the creation of
temporary processing centers in Turkey, Jordan, Greece, Italy
and other crisis 'hot spots', employing ‘zero-impact’ environmental
techniques and using a traditional urban model to create humane,
welcoming settings for migrants who have fled violence in the home
towns. Refugees would find temporary quarters while waiting to be
processed, complete with health- and child-care services, refectories,
clothing dispensaries, laundry facilities, etc. Their first experience in
transitioning to Europe would thus be welcoming and civilized.
Buildings would be constructed using upgraded adobe techniques
(sun-dried brick), which are familiar in Syria and other countries
of the Middle East. Adobe buildings are cheap, easy to produce, 
quick  to assemble, and highly ecological, as they do not generate
deleterious amounts of carbon dioxide during production and
handling, nor do they leave toxic or other hazardous waste when
discarded. They are also highly durable, permitting eventual
re-purposing of the processing centers as affordable housing,
academic villages, or resort communities. The ability to re-purpose
makes the proposal attractive for investment, which can count on
eventual capital returns.

 

Mayor George Ferguson, Bristol, UK. The Green Dividend:
the making of a fairer city 

To make a better future, do we need to change aspirations? Do we
need a sharp wake up call to open our eyes to a better life for all?
Where do we start? In our cities of course – and where better to
have this conversation than in Rome “the city of echoes, the city of
illusions, and the city of yearning”
 (Giotto)
 
We have been brought up to yearn for personal ‘success’ – generally
defined as the accumulation of ‘stuff’ - and, over the past couple of
generations, we have exported that definition of success from the
developed to the developing world, encouraging the development of
flash, congested and polluted places that have ceased to become the
‘communities for good’ by which a city should be defined.
 
I say “beware of false prophets from the West which come to you in
sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves”!
 
When I was a poor hitch-hiking architectural student 'roughing it' in
and around Rome 50 years ago, I yearned for a Maserati – a red one of
course – not realizing at the time that what I really wanted was a
good public transport system!
 
‘The Green Dividend’ looks at how we learn from the best of the
past and invest in a smarter environmental future that is judged by a
different measure of success – a fairer city from which everyone can
reap benefits in terms of a healthier and happier place in which to live,
work and play.

 

Image preview

Maria Sanchez Godoy and Pedro Godoy, Guatemala City,
GUATEMALA. Cayala: The Renaissance of a Traditional
City in Guatemala 

In under 2 years, the town of Cayalá, recipient of the 2015 IMCL
Built Project Award, has become an important district within Guatemala
City, hosting some of the most relevant cultural and social events in its
public spaces, and providing a safe neighborhood that fosters a strong
sense of community.

Cayalá´s form, density, and scale demonstrate how Guatemala City
can become a polycentric metropolis of independent neighborhoods
that provide a socially, economically, and environmentally sustainable
urban setting.

Paseo Cayalá is a pedestrian friendly network of blocks, squares, and
streets lined with mixed-use colonnaded buildings. It creates a sequence
of public spaces connecting various landmark buildings, which are
prominently situated and offer unparalleled views of the surrounding
natural beauty.

Guatemala’s rich Spanish Colonial and Mayan architectural heritage
inspired the design of Cayalá’s buildings. The use of human scale,
as well as familiar and meaningful historic details, bring the national
cultural identity to life.

The church of Santa María Reina de la Familia is at the heart of Cayalá.
It will be the first Latin cross plan church built in 21st century Guatemala,
and the first traditional church in over two hundred years. It stands on an
elevated platform, where the town´s main streets converge.

Pope Francis’ Encyclica Laudato Sí calls for a more sustainable                                                         development and environment. Cayalá not only accomplishes this, but                                                 represents a first step in reconstructing a holistically healthy public realm in                                         Guatemala. And with Santa María at its core, Cayalá evokes the city of God 
on Earth.

 

Richard J. Jackson, MD MPH, Professor, Dept. of
Environmental Sciences, University of California Los Angeles,
Los Angeles, CA, USA. Will We Merit Gratitude from Our
Grandchildren?

The fortunate on the earth benefited greatly from their forebears’
commitment to justice and education, to hard work and infrastructure,
and to prosperity and a good quality of life. Yet, the world that today’s
young people confront is choking in the detritus of human greed.
A US Presidential candidate ridicules impoverished immigrants;
a worldwide car manufacturer knowingly manufactures millions of
polluting cars packaged with lies; and a super-wealthy fossil fuel
company covers up its knowledge of oil’s horrific impacts on climate
for more than a generation as it funds a campaign of denial and
disinformation.  Only the ignorant are able to refrain from cynicism.
Pope Francis and other spiritual leaders decry the suffering of the
poor and the indifference of  the prosperous who are “vainly showing
off their supposed superiority and leaving behind them so much waste”.
(I, 2015)  And the generation that is the responsible party appears
indifferent to its criminal level of generational child neglect. In place of
humanity’s best instincts to care for children and their habitat, this
generation’s economic systems, both socialist and capitalist, have
become totalitarian and destructive in their disregard for the needs of
humanity, especially the poor, and of the planet. The aphorism that
“Living well is the best revenge” has been perverted. It is a collective
delusion that over-consuming and over-wasting are “living well”. But
the point intended was that living well was living mindfully, not through
compulsive consuming, and not by damaging another person. Jackson’s
talk will explore ways to build homes and cities, regions and nations, in
ways that care not only for the current generation, but also for our
grandchildren and the planet. He will offer policy options for ways to
attain greater generational good citizenship and a more organic
well-being. 

 

Ferdinand Stoddert Johns, FAIA, Distinguished Professor,
IMCL Board. Design Matters

Today’s city of many owners and many constituencies is extra-
ordinarily complex, and the proper role of the “urban designer”
is often difficult to determine.

In search of a more egalitarian and livable city, planners and
urban designers have become strong proponents of processes
that encourage greater citizen involvement in shaping neighbor-
hoods and districts. An unfortunate and unintended byproduct
of this long overdue citizen-focused approach can be the
demonization and marginalization of highly qualified design
professionals, fueled by well-deserved criticism of the self-
referential, free-standing, individualistic atrocities often thrust
into a delicate urban fabric by egomaniacal developers or
politicians and their equally egomaniacal Starchitects.

The presentation will discuss how visionary urban designers
have identified the DNA of a place, and then selected an
appropriate conceptual framework to guide the rejuvenation
and/or future growth of a city and its environs. Several historical
case studies, including Rome, will be presented graphically.

In the eclectic mix of a rapidly evolving, democratic, modern city,
principle-based design criteria would appear more useful than
style-based codes. Examples of readily understandable design
principles employed to address issues of scale, layering, way-
finding and circulation will be discussed, along with criteria for
identifying the appropriate roles of buildings and spaces in the
urban fabric. Examples of how the concept of “useful beauty”
has historically created interest, variety and texture in the urban
environment will be presented, as well.

Great cities have always successfully combined the untidy chaos
of everyday life with the best design talents available. May it be
so forever.

 

Suzanne H. Crowhurst Lennard, Ph.D.(Arch.), Co-founder and
Director, International Making Cities Livable Conference.
Principles for Healthy, Sustainable, Just Cities

The current neoliberal overdevelopment of cities around the world
is cancerous; and some urban environments give us cancer. We
have seen the growth of cities spiral out of control. Monstrously tall
buildings are dwarfing the healthy urban fabric of traditional cities,
destroying community, and the attractiveness of streets and squares
that belong to all of us. They are expensive to build, so are designed
as luxury investments. This mania to maximize profits quickly makes a
city unaffordable for the middle class.

In China, the Middle East, even Africa, complete high rise cities are
being constructed and planned by global corporations – not in order
to house a complex, interdependent, sustainable society unique to
that culture and geography, but purely as a way to make vast profits
and increase the GDP. But the GDP is a very flawed measure of
success: as Bobby Kennedy said, “The GDP measures everything
except that which makes life worthwhile.”

We MUST adopt principles and guidelines for healthy, equitable
development of our cities and settlements before it is too late. There
is no time to lose.

 

Lamine Mahdjoubi, Ph.D., Research Centre Director, Faculty of the
Built Environment, University of the West of England, Bristol, UK.
Children and the Public Realm

21st Century has been characterised by growing sedentary lifestyles
amongst children young people and its severe consequences on their
health and well-being.  This paper reports on a recent research, which
sought to determine what should be expected from the public realm in
the 21st century to encourage outdoor play and promote regular physical
activities (PA).  It examined the role of inclusive planning design of
public realm as a vehicle to promote play and to overcome some barriers
that inhibit regular outdoor PA. 

This research has brought to light some of the key reasons, which
contributed to the reduced use of outdoor environments.  It is also
advocated a new approach, which identified specific planning and
design aspects of outdoor spaces, which are likely to be stimulating and
conducive to outdoor active play for all.  Powerful strategies and further
research needed to counteract young people’s inactivity and its
implications on their health and well-being were recommended.

 

Ettore Maria Mazzola, Architect & Urbanist, Professor, University
of Notre Dame, Rome Global Gateway, ITALY. The Testaccio
District in Rome: The great lesson of Rome’s housing policy of
the early 20th century

We can learn so much from the recent past if we want to solve
today’s problems of true urbanism. All Schools of Architecture
in the last 80 years, all over the world, forgot to teach this
important aspect of early modern architecture. Between the
unification of Italy (1848) and 1930 the population of the city
of Rome increased from 200.000 to 1.200.000; this generated
an enormous problem of housing the new citizens. And yet,
the quality of urbanism and architecture produced in this
period was very interesting, beautiful, and respectful of people.

Projects such as those of the Testaccio, San Saba, Città
Giardino Aniene and Garbatella, also helped to protect and
upgrade the historical centre: in the most problematic period
in the History of Italian Town-Planning a Regional Architecture
came into being, which, depending on the needs and trends in
taste or principles, went from the "erudite vernacular" of the
Roman minor-baroque (Barocchetto Romano) era to more
domestic maritime or mountain features.

 

Michael Mehaffy, Executive Director, Sustasis Foundation,
Consultant to the Secretariat for Habitat III, Portland, OR, USA.
Beyond Habitat III: Lots of talk, but what is the action?

Habitat III, the UN's bidecennial conference on global urban
policy, offers a narrow window to address crucial issues of
urbanization and human well-being for the next twenty years
and beyond. As has happened in past conferences, noble
statements of aspirations are likely to be plentiful, but effective
action for implementation may be in short supply. We will
discuss some promising implementation work that is under
way, including an initiative to launch a new center for research
into practice -- not aimed at providing "expert" knowledge, but
rather, offering peer-to-peer sharing of knowledge on what
works and how to implement it.  This program is aimed squarely
at the current "operating system for growth" and the changes
needed towards an evidence-based, human-centered, place-
led approach.

 

Edoardo Salzano, Emeritus Professor & Dean of Urban Planner,
Venice University, Former Assessori di Urbanistica, Venice, ITALY

 

 

 

 

Stefano Serafini, Philosopher, Psychologist, Founding Member
and Director, International Society of Biourbanism, Rome, ITALY.
Urban Design through Neuroergonomics

 

 

 

Philip B. Stafford, Ph.D., Director, Center on Aging and Community,
Indiana Institute on Disability and Community, Indiana University,
Bloomington, IN, USA. The Age-friendly Community Movement

While the aging of the planet is a grand challenge, grand challenges
call for local solutions. The age-friendly community movement will
not succeed by promoting a single model that works for every
community. In the words of Nabeel Hamdi, global progress will
come through the accumulation of “small changes” that emerge
from locally defined assessment and local participation and
mobilization of resources.

Using examples from Japan, Cameroon, and the USA, an
international panel of scholars and practitioners will discuss
the manner in which livability can be defined through participatory
research and development that is inclusive of all ages and abilities.
Inclusion is taken to be a human right and it will be argued that the
just city (or town) is only livable to the degree that it is moving
towards full inclusion in both planning and outcomes.

Four papers in this session will address ways to embed the age-
friendly city movement within a social justice framework; the role
that young people have played in assessing and responding to
the needs of frail elders in Cameroon and Uganda, with attention
to the significance of the youth development movement to older
adults; the resilience of small Japanese villages in the face of
significant demographic change; and an overview of the potential
for older persons to contribute to and draw from the sharing
economy and escape dependence on the monetary economy
for meeting their needs and extending their power.

 

Dr Agis D. Tsouros, Formerly Director, Division of Policy and
Governance for Health and Well-being, World Health Organization.
WHO’s Health 2020 Urban Planning Agenda for Healthy Cities

 

 

 

Sven von Ungern-Sternberg, Dr., former Freiburg Mayor and
Governor, State of Süd-Baden, GERMANY, responsible for
guiding Europe’s most livable and sustainable new urban
neighborhoods, Rieselfeld and Vauban. Planning for Sustainability
in Freiburg