Communities are protesting and funders are skittish, we need a better approach to urban development, writes Dr Patrice Derrington
“Communities are protesting, governments are pressured, funders are skittish and developers are demonised,” says Dr. Patrice Derrington, who leads the prestigious real estate programme at Columbia University.
Derrington believes the high-stakes, fraught environment of urban placemaking needs a rethink – and at The Developer’s Festival of Place she plans to prod the audience to interrogate the way we develop cities.
“The process by which the private sector delivers much of the urban built environment is struggling to optimise the outcomes for all concerned,” says Derrington.
“Urban development globally is facing a crisis in terms of the process by which private developers are expected to deliver much of the built form of growing cities.
“The structure of community engagement and the alienation of funding are two of the many flaws in the mode of production, but there are more. Property professionals need to understand the full spectrum of issues.”
Dr. Patrice Derrington, Holliday Associate Professor and Director of the Real Estate Development, Columbia GSSAPP
Derrington says her session at the Festival will identify the most problematic parts of the process of urban development and promote ideas on how development might better meet the needs of urbanites.
In a session designed for audience participation, Derrington, who consults on the funding and delivery of urban projects worldwide, says attendees will be challenged to “identify the most critical flaws and formulate ways in which this production process can better build our cities of the future.
“Many participants and stakeholders in the urban development process are challenged in their roles, dissatisfied with outcomes, and frustrated in meeting their objectives,” says Derrington.
“As part of a complex production activity with so many participants, attendees have the opportunity to more clearly see the larger context in which they work and contribute to an improved process.”
The Festival of Place is a one-day creative event that brings together developers, investors, designers, city officials, planners and consultants to rethink placemaking together in a challenging and creative environment.
The event takes place at Tobacco Dock on 9 July in London and tickets to the event, which costs £495, can be booked online.
The Festival of Place will tackle conversations other places avoid. It’s an unmissable event if you want to understand how to navigate the forces challenging good placemaking
Alongside an impressive rota of speakers from development and academia, the programme includes Placehack workshops – interactive sessions that encourage disruptive thinking about the way in which we make new places in cities.
The ambitious event was launched by The Developer in creative contrast to industry events by focussing on exemplary placemaking from the citizen’s point of view.
Christine Murray, Editor-in-Chief of The Developer says, “A lot of people have told me in this sector that they want us to tackle real issues and be a forum for the conversations other places avoid. It’s an unmissable event if you want to understand how to navigate the forces challenging good placemaking today.”