A city for living in

Urban Ecology. The Deputy Mayor for Ecology, Urban Planning and Mobility has attended the opening of the first Architecture and Sustainable, Healthy and Resilient Cities Conference.

Sanz affirmed that Barcelona “had declared war on pollution” and opted to “be bold and take decisions”, in order to move towards a more sustainable, more healthy city which is better prepared to respond to the new phenomena that are on the way

The Deputy Mayor for Ecology, Urban Planning and Mobility, Janet Sanz, today took part in the first Architecture and Sustainable, Healthy and Resilient Cities Conference, held at the Architects’ Association of Catalonia (COAC).

She explained that the municipal government wanted to “change the inertia” that, until now, had surrounded concepts such as urban planning, architecture and mobility in the city, and has taken onboard the ecological values in this area so they might play a pre-eminent role “in the planning of any urban policy” in the city.

She talked of “valuing the concept of sustainability again” but warned that “not everything is sustainable, and there are limits”. “We must be bold”, she insisted.

In that regard, she explained that “we have to take specific decisions if we want to preserve the city for living in”, declaring that, under this umbrella, efforts were required to revive the economy with a social perspective, to put a stop to the segregation of the neighbourhoods and rethink mobility, among other things.

Turning to the question of a healthy city, the Deputy Mayor affirmed that Barcelona “has declared war on pollution” because we cannot allow 3,500 pollution-related, premature deaths every year in the Metropolitan Area.

“A government cannot pretend that this does not exist, we have do change it”, she concluded. She said that required a global approach, starting with policies that encourage people to use more sustainable transport for their journeys but also analysing how to intervene from this perspective in any new actions required on an urban-planning level.

Finally, she referred to the importance of sharing and developing a resilient city, so we gradually adapt to and integrate the effects that phenomena such as climate change are already having on our city.

She also mentioned some of the projects that the municipal government are going ahead with in an effort to achieve these goals, for example: the Superblocks, the anti-pollution strategy, the renovation initiatives, opting for the tram and a municipal energy operator, and promoting urban greenery.

The Deputy Mayor then called on the public and the sectors involved in architecture to join in the work to find an answer to these future challenges.