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The Social Life of Cities:what is the designers’ role?  London Festival of Architecture Events                       27th ...
Social Life is a new venture set up by the Young Foundation
We know that a lot of what makes cities work is flexibility,organic growth
When places go into economic decline it has a huge socialcost and there is a need to intervene
Mistakes are often repeated
There are times when places go through moments of changewhere the potential for intervention is amplified
200 years+ of planned new communities but relatively little knownabout what makes places work
Putting people at the heart ofplacemaking
Over the last three years we reviewed the evidence, andexplored the tension between intervention and organicdevelopment
The first question: what is a                 community?
An alternative view: whatmakes a community?•  Physical boundaries to promote geographical   identity•  Local myths & stori...
Reviewing the evidence“… where these facilities were already in place when people began toarrive, the community came toget...
The importance of social relationships
Plaque to commemorate the site of                            former Arkwright TownNew Arkwright, Derbyshire
• HafenCity, Hamburg     Hafen City, Hamburg: sociologist appointed as “go-between”     - intermediary for early residents...
Cabrini Green, North Chicago: good fences help make goodneighbours
A framework for social sustainabilityThe Young Foundation/Social Life Social Sustainability Framework, 2011
So what is thedesigners role?•  Make beautiful functional buildings and   places•  Physical structures that promote   iden...
Designing placesOn behalf of the communityInvolving the communityWith the community“Cities have the capability of providin...
Putting people at the heart of placemakingsocial-life.conicola.bacon@social-life.cosaffron.woodcraft@social-life.co
EVENTS: The Social Life of Cities: What is the designer's role?
EVENTS: The Social Life of Cities: What is the designer's role?
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EVENTS: The Social Life of Cities: What is the designer's role?

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Presentation by Nicola Bacon from a debate hosted by John Thompson & Partners as part of the London Festival of Architecture.

For more on the event see:

http://www.social-life.co/news/post/what-can-designers-do-for-cities/

Published in: Technology, Real Estate
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EVENTS: The Social Life of Cities: What is the designer's role?

  1. 1. The Social Life of Cities:what is the designers’ role? London Festival of Architecture Events 27th June 2012
  2. 2. Social Life is a new venture set up by the Young Foundation
  3. 3. We know that a lot of what makes cities work is flexibility,organic growth
  4. 4. When places go into economic decline it has a huge socialcost and there is a need to intervene
  5. 5. Mistakes are often repeated
  6. 6. There are times when places go through moments of changewhere the potential for intervention is amplified
  7. 7. 200 years+ of planned new communities but relatively little knownabout what makes places work
  8. 8. Putting people at the heart ofplacemaking
  9. 9. Over the last three years we reviewed the evidence, andexplored the tension between intervention and organicdevelopment
  10. 10. The first question: what is a community?
  11. 11. An alternative view: whatmakes a community?•  Physical boundaries to promote geographical identity•  Local myths & stories•  Visible leadership•  Strong social relationships, networks & bonds•  Opportunities for informal, spontaneous social encounters•  Rituals and rhythms•  Shared belief systems, garden cities, new towns, eco-cities.
  12. 12. Reviewing the evidence“… where these facilities were already in place when people began toarrive, the community came together and networks were formed moreeasily” CLG New Towns Review“ … most mixing across social groups takes places between children. Itis these contacts … that provide opportunities to meet and formrelationships.” CIH/JRF 2005“ … planning for hard infrastructure alone would never build acommunity … it would only be done by a matrix of formal and informalopportunities or supported activities.” Cambridgeshire PCT (2007)
  13. 13. The importance of social relationships
  14. 14. Plaque to commemorate the site of former Arkwright TownNew Arkwright, Derbyshire
  15. 15. • HafenCity, Hamburg Hafen City, Hamburg: sociologist appointed as “go-between” - intermediary for early residents and developer• 
  16. 16. Cabrini Green, North Chicago: good fences help make goodneighbours
  17. 17. A framework for social sustainabilityThe Young Foundation/Social Life Social Sustainability Framework, 2011
  18. 18. So what is thedesigners role?•  Make beautiful functional buildings and places•  Physical structures that promote identity and belonging•  Public space that encourages people to mix and get to know each other•  Promote neighbourliness•  Places to play and use•  Places that make people feel safe and prevent crime•  Encourage people from different backgrounds to mix
  19. 19. Designing placesOn behalf of the communityInvolving the communityWith the community“Cities have the capability of providing somethingfor everybody, only because, and only when, theyare created by everybody.” Jane Jacobs
  20. 20. Putting people at the heart of placemakingsocial-life.conicola.bacon@social-life.cosaffron.woodcraft@social-life.co

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