At the beginning of the year, a number of case studies and innovative practices were presented in Porto during the Urban Maestro workshop #2.

Urban Maestro is an initiative of a consortium comprised of the United Nations Human Settlement Programme (UN-Habitat), University College London (UCL) and Brussels Bouwmeester Maître Architecte (BMA), supported by the European Commission.

Key highlights on 8 presentations:

- The Place Standard tool provides a simple framework to structure conversations about place. It allows you to think about the physical elements of a place (for example its buildings, spaces, and transport links) as well as the social aspects (for example whether people feel they have a say in decision making);

- A presentation of the IBA system, especially the IBA in Heidelberg;

- The More than Housing cooperative about a different model of living together in communities in Zurich;

- Grands Voisins in Paris at the initiative of plateau urbain -Marie Guilguet et Fanny Cottet- who have a temporary contract for the use of the former Hospital Saint-Vincent-de-Paul near Denfert-Rochereau for various adaptions like for instance start-ups, homeless people and other areas which wouldn’t fit with a commercial standard;

- panorama lokaal by the dutch Rijksbouwmeester;

- The Belgian system of the Bouwmeester by Kristiaan Borret;

Grenoble Public Spaces by Stephane Durand on organizing a process for incremental interventions on public spaces over time.

- The BIP-ZIP program from Lisbon, which supports small-scale, community driven projects in deprived neighborhoods.

"The common spirit as well as the basis for the Urban Maestro programme is to find and collect new governance strategies for urban design, for interventions in the city fabric and the implementation of quality in the built environment. It's good to see that the same goals of promoting the role of architecture in the society are taken up by various initiatives. " georg pendl, ACE President

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