Between 3-5 May the urban designers of Prêt-à-Loger Todor Kesarovski and Daniel Radai attended the 3rd Young Planners’ Workshop 2014 organised by the European Council of Spatial Planners in Brussels. This was a three-day-long event where participants were invited to share the challenges of spatial planning and energy in their respective countries. Our planners focused on the correlation between housing, transportation and energy and brought a fresh light to the event by putting the emphasis on the suburban/rural context addressing the Region of Westland, in contrast to the other groups’ general attention on metropolitan centers. Their main argument was not to force changes on lifestyles but to introduce technological solutions into the planning system in order to achieve sustainability and improve life quality within the existing behavior patterns. What is more, the emphasis was put on the importance of the optimization of the existing transportation networks in densifying suburban areas since this is also a key element in the battle for sustainability of the built environment.
On the first day the 35 participants including Daniel and Todor presented and discussed their papers prepared for the occasion. The session ended with a discussion in 3 groups on various topics, such as social perspectives, financing, eco-town, housing or coherent planning policy. The program of the second day consisted of an excursion around the harbor of Brussels in the Canal Area, which is a key part of one of the main development zones of the Belgian capital currently. On the last day the workshop joined the 10th European Urban and Regional Planning Awards 2013-2014 organised by the Council and hosted by the Committee of the Regions. The young planners reached conclusions about their research on different regions in Europe and shared them with the award winner professionals in a round table discussion raising further questions of energy efficiency and spatial development.
One of the main results of the workshop presented by Daniel in the end was the introduction of a triangle between finance, technology and willingness and the crucial necessity of addressing all in the same time and plans. This statement was supported by the different gaps found in the observed countries. Prêt-à-Loger offers a new technology for the Dutch renovation market where financial support is available and both public and private actors are rather interested in the advantages of new developments.
Daniel and Todor representing Prêt-à-Loger and emphasizing the suburban and rural context in their story.
Daniel (Hungarian) and Todor (Bulgarian) are also representative of the international spirit of the Solar Decathlon, Prêt-à-Loger and this Workshop!
Joining the 10th European Urban and Regional Planning Awards 2013-2014