We need other perspectives on our public space and places! Not only in cities, but also in villages and rural areas. And knowing that it was such a pleasure to inspire policy makers, urban designers, ministeries, urban planners, designers and traffic engineers and a whole lot of Placemakers from around the globe with the child perspective on Placemakingweek Europe in Pontevedra! Creating better cities together, is about people, the human scale and then buildings.
Last week gooitz was at PlacemakingweekEurope Pontevedra Spain en we were there together with an awesome group of likeminded people who want to create better cities. With our team of Placemaking Europe kids we provided two workshops on Wednesday and Thursday.
Our first workshop on Wednesday September 27th was really cool:
‘The City at Kids Eye Level – What Would You Change if You Explored and Experienced the City Like a Kid?’
Have you ever thought how a child experience the city? What do they look when walking and playing? How they feel when certain things are present or missing?
In this walkshop, we gave adults the experience to explore Pontevedra from the height of a child and seeing through a Childs perspective. Using different tools, the Placemaking Kids Group guided the people through the public space asking you to assess the city from the needs and wants of a kid. Do you remember how your city was when you where a child? How far could you go? How many things could you do? Is it different today?
With our audience we shared why and how the public space and the built environment affects children’s development, as well as their caregivers’ day to day activities. We discussed ideas, visions and design principles that we use in Placemaking to improve this experience and have more child-friendly cities. And let the attendees see the city from a different perspective. And have the experience of the city through the eyes of a child!
On the second Walkshop on thursday, September 28th, we were going to see through Children’s Eyes!:
‘What Kids Can Teach Us About Building Healthy Cities.’
In this Walkshop we learned about the public space from the children of Pontevedra! A group of 20+ local children explored the city and got to know what their favorite places are, where they like spending their time, where they feel togetherness. And a big group of 30 adults were interested in participatory tools to use with children, this session was really awesome! We presented different tools for everyone to use to integrate children’s ideas, wishes, and visions when designing public spaces in the city and in city policies.
While the children were busy with their observation the adults observed how the kids worked, and how is it to work with children. Also, we saw Pontevedra from the expert’s vision: its younger citizens! Children’s imagination, hope and creativity, bring to the table a different sense of the public space. Things that in adulthood sometimes we tend to forget. This playful walkshop was a great opportunity learn about children’s participation, and use their perceptions and ideas to redefine the way we work.
I want to give a big shout out to all the Placemakers, Citymakers and all advocates for child friendly cities to make generous cities together. It takes enormous stamina to add a different perspective to the existing ones to the public space in order to make a generous city together. And as the saying goes: ‘it takes a child to raise a village’
I want to give a big thumbs up to Placemaking Europe and my colleagues at Placemaking Europe Kids, especially to @carolienOomes whom I worked with closely this week. And to the school and @mar Penala Lopez
As we speek I am at the 10th child in the city conference in Dublin where @Marlies and I organizing a fieldtrip ‘Through the tunnel’ with 20 children at the age of 10, 20 participants, the bikemayor of Dublin Donna Cooney, our Dutch ambassador Adriaan Palm and many press. We want to create awareness for the child perspective. To be continued.