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Rebooting the Masterplan events staged, spring 2014

Lucy Bullivant, and Thomas Ermacora, Limewharf, present:

Rebooting the Masterplan, Monday 10 March 2014, 6.30-9pm, Limewharf, Vyner Street. London E2 9DJ, in conjunction with the Recode Gallery at Limewharf, continues its popular series of events with Rebooting the Masterplan, two evening talks and discussions investigating contemporary progressive masterplanning ideals and strategies, staged in collaboration with the Urban Design Group.

The conventional masterplanning model is dead – long live the masterplan! Reinvented as an adaptive multidisciplinary instrument closely related to the wide-ranging complexities of contemporary life, the masterplan, with its precise deliberations and processes, has gained a fresh significance. How change is managed is of pivotal importance, and a masterplan as a hands-on cultural framework which doesn't alienate people, responding to urban environments as organisms in continual evolution, has the power to foster potentials and a better sense of ownership with a new resilience in the face of multiple challenges.


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6.30pm Rebooting the Masterplan: introduction to the theme and speakers,

Lucy Bullivant, moderator and author of Masterplanning Futures, Routledge, 2012, Book of the Year, Urban Design Group Awards 2014.

6.40 pm Talks:

Frameworks: design methodologies for implementation, communication and transformation, Jonathan Woodroffe, Director and Co-Founder, S333

These days, it would appear that urban strategies are required to be visionary, robust, integrated, strategic, flexible, multi-disciplinary, open, interactive…. It would appear that the list is almost endless. What tools and design methodologies do we have in our 'toolbox' to enable us to confront these expectations?

Urban designers and masterplanners talk about proposing flexible frameworks and planning tools. What do they really mean? And what lessons can we learn from the Netherlands?

Typological Reasoning: Strategies for implementation, evolution and transformation, Dominic Papa, Director and Co-Founder, S333

As a result of fast moving economies, overly paternalistic authorities or corporate indecision, how can a framework promote the formation of a social fabric? How can housing move from provision to the formation of neighbourhoods? S333 have been developing urban instruments at the architectural scale that are organisationally specific but functionally flexible.

Rather than a static and repeatable solution, typology is understood as a dynamic and responsive instrument. What interests us is a process that engages with complexity and unpredictability.

The masterplan as the dream before waking up: Lessons from Xindu District, Chengdu, Darryl Chen, Urban Design Associate, Hawkins\Brown

Just because masterplans don't get built doesn't mean they shouldn't be drawn. Or even called something different. The masterplan remains as strong as any vehicle for acting in/on/for the city. Dreams alter our perception and shape our action. And like dreams, masterplans have an interesting role within development delivery that goes beyond expecting the ideal. We have been thinking about what our masterplan for an area in Chengdu is 'doing', as we emerge from a dreamy sleep.

If it's thoughtful it's masterplanning, Dann Jessen, Director and Co-Founder, East

A careful understanding of the city has allowed us to work into it across scale, time and economies. At a scale of 1:1 the projection onto a flank wall of a silent movie recreated with local children at Wood Street, London E17, where many of London's silent movie film studios used to be, revealed the high street as public space. In Gothenburg, flood risk brought ideas of the city together with ideas of the landscape to create an open framework able to hold large institutional buildings, reused warehouses, an archipelago of islands, platforms and boats together as a new piece of city.

Audience questions and discussion, Wharfkitchen café bar

Rebooting the Masterplan will be staged in two parts: Rebooting the Masterplan part 2 is on Monday 12 May, 6.30-8.30pm. Doors open at 6.00pm. With Liza Fior, muf architecture/art, Paul Karakusevic, Karakusevic Carson, and David West, Studio Egret West. Venue: The Gallery, 77 Cowcross Street, London EC1M 6EL. The entrance to the Gallery is at the end of the courtyard at 77 Cowcross Street. Tickets £5 via Eventbrite: