We are very happy to announce that Design as Politics and the International New Town Institute will collectively host a side event at the upcoming World Urban Forum in Kuala Lumpur!
During this event, we will present our first ideas concerning a multi-year research by design project, focused on one of the fastest urbanizing regions in the world: the African west coast – between Cote d’Ivoire and Nigeria – where more than a dozen agglomerations with millions of inhabitants are stretched over an area of approximately 500 miles. This creates an urban area with a potential coherence and accumulative value comparable to regions such as the East Coast of the United States or the Pearl River Delta in China.
The African 500 Mile City however, stretches across five countries, with different political systems, economies working at different speeds and complex relationships amongst each other. The biggest challenge for this region is therefore to coherently deal with the different, and often competing, issues that arise in this rapid urbanisation: how to protect it from the effects of climate change, while simultaneous creating places for the newcomers to live; how to preserve the natural and historical heritage while also setting out lines for the future development; and how to deploy a coherent strategy for the entire area, while respecting the fact that we are dealing with five different countries with a variety of neighbourhoods, towns, and communities.
The event is aimed at creating a network to do research, generate awareness and to find partners to collectively develop alternative spatial and political approaches for a sustainable and inclusive development of the 500 Mile City. After a presentation of the first research ideas, we will talk with the audience and a selected panel about this region’s most hopeful futures and the tools and alliances needed to facilitate this future.
The event will take place on Sunday February 11 from 17:00 – 18:00 at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Center, Room 407. Spread the word and hope to see you there! More info: wuf9.org/programme/side-events/the-500-mile-city/