Placemaking in Waterfront Cities « Project for Public Spaces – Placemaking for Communities
Upcoming September conference in Norway on waterfronts and public space.
The important themes of the conference include creating “Multi-use Destinations”, forging an “Architecture of Place”, expanding the idea of accessibility and the role of transportation on waterfronts and the important potential impact of markets on local economies.
* Creating “Multi-use Destinations” on Waterfronts: Multi-use destinations define what a city is about and are the premier public spaces in a city that attract and highlight the local assets and unique talents and skills of the community. The combination of uses – educational, cultural, retail, and commercial – are open and available for visitors to freely partake in and are accessible physically, and in terms of how they are perceived. Successful multi-use destinations are always changing because they are flexible enough to easily adapt to different times of day and year and they are proactively managed to take advantage of these differences.
* Forging an “Architecture of Place”: In many ways, iconic buildings have defined the past 50 years of modern architecture in cities. However, as cities and waterfronts evolve, a new idea of design is emerging called an “architecture of place”, which indicates that cities will become more livable, sustainable and authentic in the future. Public institutions such as museums, government buildings and libraries will become important anchors for civic activity that host a broader range of activities than they currently do and a new type of design will support that quest.
* Expanding the Idea of Accessibility and the Role of Transportation: In the last 100 years cities, (particularly waterfronts), have been defined by transportation decisions that were geared largely in favor of the car. The result is a system of streets and highways that reinforce a design ethos that is more about seeing or viewing rather than participating in communities. However, we are now seeing a massive shift in cities throughout the world where peo
The Magic is in the Mix: Creating Great Public Multi-Use Destinations at Granville Island « Project for Public Spaces – Placemaking for Communities
Some interesting ideas articulated at the two-day Forum on multi-use destinations, held on Granville Island in Vancouver (organized by Project for Public Spaces).
-Public multi-use destinations like Granville Island have proven to be most successful, and we should replicate them more often. Why do we spend so much money on new developments that don’t work and that don’t attract people?
-Don’t lead with design. The design of multi-use destinations should be to create a “setting” for the uses that are occurring and that emphasize the products and the authentic aspects of the place.
-The importance of government learning to say “yes” to new ideas and developing stronger more trusting relationships with the private sector.
-“If you think you’re done, you’re finished” – Developing spaces that are flexible and that “manage themselves.” In other words, ongoing and innovative management is key to create vibrant multi-use destinations.
-“The magic is in the mix.” We are moving beyond the simple concept of “mixed use” toward a technique of development that builds authentic places through establishing settings and uses that are intimately related, interconnected and interdependent. True sustainability comes from the relationships between uses, tenants, and the organizations within a place.
-Find creative funding strategies to keep rents low, attract a range of tenants and incentivize the presence of tenants who may not produce a lot of money for the site, but who bring a lot of foot traffic and are invested in the area.