Imagine a City. Discussion on (Opening up) the Process of City Planning

Conference and Study Centre, Skopje.
Lectures and panel discussion, January 20 , 2011.

First Archi Brigade, Archis Interventions/SEE, Netherlands Architecture Institute (NAI) – Debates on Tour programme, Coalition for Sustainable Development-CSD.

From the background of the radical urban transformation that Skopje has undergone in the last decade, it seemed necessary to open up a discussion on the process of urban development and the relevance of architecture in it. Vedran Mimica, director of the Berlage Institute, Amsterdam and Ole Bouman, director of the Netherlands Architecture Institute, presented there views on the possibilities and necessity of good urban design for the future of the city.

The following discussion moderated by Dragan Krstevski (First Archi Brigade) and Kai Vöckler (Archis Interventions) focussed on concrete examples for the possible directions which could advance the future development of Macedonia’s capital city. Skopje is everyday reality for its citizens and is also part of a broader context of a flux of people, goods and knowledge. The city is being built daily, but unless this practically irreversible activity is strategically planned then new city tissues could become a serious functional obstacle. The battle of participatory practices in contemporary urban projects can only be successful if the process of urban planning is open. With this event a discussion has been opened on the future of the city and showed that citizens, authorities and professionals are equally active creators of its urban future.

Local panelists:

  • Jasmina Siljanoska, Professor, eminent urban planner.

  • Aneta Hristova-Popovska, Professor, Vice-Dean of the Faculty of Architecture, Skopje

  • Biljana Filipovska, a representative of the Association of Architects of Macedonia

  • Vladimir Todorovic, Mayor of the Centar Municipality, Skopje

  • Izet Mexhiti, Mayor of the Cair Municipality, Skopje

The discussion is part of the NAI’s international ‘Debates on Tour’ programme and the Archis SEE network programme.