International conference Metropolitan open space

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Open Spaces in the Growing City. 18 May to 21 May 2017 in Berlin

Joint press release by the Senate Department for the Environment, Transport and Climate Protection and IGA Berlin 2017 GmbH in cooperation with the Association of German Landscape Architects bdla.

The social, aesthetic and ecological qualities of public spaces such as green spaces, parks, squares, sports areas or street space shape the character of a city and make a significant contribution to the quality of life. Especially in growing cities, public space is becoming the negotiating and design space of the future. The Metropolitan open space conference addresses the significance of public space in the "century of cities".

Senator Regine Günther says: "For the first time in human history, more people live in cities than in the countryside. Cities have an outstanding role to play in the implementation of global climate and environmental goals, while at the same time they are the field of experimentation for new economic and life styles, for cultural and artistic impulses, many of which are manifested in the individual or communal use of public open space."

Christoph Schmidt, Managing Director of IGA Berlin 2017 GmbH, explains, "IGA Berlin 2017, Berlin's first international garden exhibition, is a powerful engine for sustainable urban development in the growing capital. Living close to nature in combination with a fast connection to the city centre are qualities that are in demand and have been created in a forward-looking way in the district of Marzahn-Hellersdorf with the IGA. The IGA Berlin 2017 is a source of ideas and impulses, an internationally oriented platform for the dialogue of world cultures and a laboratory for innovation and sustainable green infrastructure".

bdla President Till Rehwaldt supports this and adds that "at the same time as the IGA, urban greenery is finally - symbolised by the Federal Government's White Paper "Green in the City" - also receiving the necessary political appreciation it deserves for the future viability of our cities. Internationally and nationally, we are currently heralding a new era in urban development policy. The unique health, cultural-aesthetic, social, economic and integrative functions of the urban green are once again illustrated by the IGA."

To mark the occasion of the garden exhibition, the Senate Department for the Environment, Transport and Climate Protection, together with IGA Berlin 2017 GmbH and the cooperation partner Bund Deutscher Landschaftsarchitekten bdla, will be holding the Conference on Urban Open Spaces, which will also feature the international landscape architects who have created garden cabinets for the IGA. They will bring in impulses from Brazil, South Africa, China, England and Chile.

The conference will begin with a pre-event reception at the ZKR - Center for Art in Public Space (Schloss Biesdorf, Berlin-Marzahn) on May 18, 2017. On May 19, the conference will open with key experts from science, research, urban and open space planning, philosophy and the cultural sciences at the IGA Berlin 2017 Visitor Center. Urban visions of the future, metropolitan strategies and approaches to solutions will be discussed. Which driving forces for sustainable urban development can be identified, what change in meaning are cities and public open spaces experiencing and how can open space planners respond to this? Do open spaces and the growing city form a contradiction? Can the far-reaching symbolism of the garden become a metaphor for the city of the future?

On Saturday, May 20, the international landscape architects of IGA Berlin 2017 will explain their conceptual gardens and continue the discourse of the conference in the garden cabinets. Thematic guided tours will explain various aspects of IGA Berlin in the afternoon. These include: From Vision to International Garden Exhibition by the planners of the IGA, geskes hack landscape architects, Art at the IGA by art historian and director of ZK R, Katja Aßmann and Sustainable Certification of the IGA Berlin by Markus Gnüchtel (GTL landscape architects, bdla).

On Sunday morning, May 21, members of the bdla Berlin-Brandenburg will invite visitors to contemporary open space projects in the capital.

Federation of German Landscape Architects bdla
Köpenicker Straße 48/49, 10179 Berlin
Tel. 030 27 87 15-0, Fax 030 27 87 15-55
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