June 6, 2014 saw the conference Between Architecture. Public Space and the Urban Commons, which took place within the exhibition project MOSCOW: Urban Space. The discussion focused on the way the society and authorities approach the issue of changed demands and expectations with respect to the role urban public space plays in the modern society.
While in the past the identity of Moscow as a city was largely defined by the architectural image of the buildings which reflected the political and economic changes which took place, in late 1990-s we saw a heated discussion around the vanishing public space, combined with criticism of the social sphere commercialization. The effect of the 2008 financial crisis on the international real estate market brought about a true interest in the social aspects of public space utilization.
Today the uniqueness of a city is defined by its “connective tissue” which makes a significant contribution to improving the lives of its inhabitants. The discussion at the conference was devoted to modern strategies and processes related to the development and creation of public space viewed in the international social and political context.
Participants of the conference: Dmitry Aksenov (RDI, Moscow), Elizabeth Diller (Diller Scofidio + Renfro, New York), Helle Juul (Juul Frost Architects, Copenhagen), Sergey Kuznetsov (Moscow Chief Architect), Richard Sennett (Professor of sociology at the New York University and the London School of Economics). Moderator: Melinda Crane (Berlin).
Conference within project Polis 21: Urban Interventions, established by RDI and Triad Berlin