Representatives of the cities involved in the URBACT Markets project met at Santa Caterina Market for a meeting that marked the official end to two years of joint work promoting markets as a stimulus to urban development.
Thirty representatives of the nine URBACT Markets project members - Barcelona, Dublin, Pécs, Suceava, Turin, Toulouse, Wrocław, Westminster and the Greek region of Attica - met at Santa Caterina Market on 25 March for the official close to two years of joint work and mutual learning on how to make the most of markets to stimulate urban regeneration, local economies and sustainable living.
Participants took the opportunity to share experiences of their joint work while implementing Local Action Plans and reflect on the work done as part of URBACT Markets, which was backed by the European Union.
Outcome of the project
Concrete results include a manual designed by local authorities and market players to summarise all the knowledge acquired during the project, in addition to the organisation of an international markets festival, the implementation of Local Action Plans by each participant and a keenness to make markets a vital key in urban development.
The participants left with a better knowledge of the urban, social, economic and sustainable aspects that need to be worked on in cities where markets are managed in a certain way and with a clear joint vision as to how to make the most of markets to that end.
Another key feature of their work was the Local Action Plans, strategic documents conceived as projects that came out of the participatory process and which are meant to provide a starting point for future organisation.
Work continues after URBACT
The URBACT Markets project has finished but the participating cities plan to carry on the work, by maintaining the network of contacts and exchanging information and, possibly, even working on new projects linked to the role of markets in creating better cities, to improve the health and quality of life of their residents.