World Garden Cities Conference

Day 2 – The Nature of Housing. Biodiversity and Climate Adaptation in Public, Cooperative and Social Housing

Location: EYE filmmuseum – Cinema 3, Amsterdam
Moderator: Jean-Paul Judson, Founder of NOWMORE


How can we meet the need to build more affordable housing without compromising nature? All demographic projections show that the number of households will continue to rise in many European countries and housing needs will increase proportionally. This will inevitably require new ways of building homes without compromising biodiversity and key ecosystem services. The syn.ikia project was invited to be part of the World Garden Cities Conference, and it will be represented by its coordinator, Niki Gaitani (NTNU) during the second day of the event.



09:00–09:30 | Arrival and registration with coffee and stroopwafels and innovation shots

09:30–09:45 | Bent Madsen – Housing Europe and Martin van Rijn – AEDES

Welcome by Housing Europe.

09:45–10:05 | Carlos Moreno – Researcher, scientist, and professor at IAE – Paris1 Sorbonne University (creator of the 15-minute city concept)

A stone’s throw away. Affordable living in proximity to jobs, nature and public services: the 15-minute city.

10:05–10:30 | Alina Stefania Ujupan – NEB JRC. (One speaker to be confirmed)

Preserving nature while protecting the right to housing in the EU.

10:30–10:45 | Niki Gatani – Associate Professor in Integrated Energy Design at the Dept. of Architecture and Technology at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU).

The housing neighbourhoods of tomorrow. Designing resilient and affordable living places and communities today for the future.

10:45–11:00 | Esther De Reys – Project Manager at and Cornelia Cordes – Project Manager at Free Hanseatic City of Bremen, the Ministry for Building, Mobility and Urban Development

What can we do with 12 m²? Taking space back from cars and giving it to people.

11:00–11:15 | Speaker TBC. Health housing inequality

11:15–11:45 – Coffee Break

11:45–13:00 | Panel discussion: More affordable homes in the face of the climate crises.

  • Flood preparedness
  • Heat adaptation
  • Biodiversity
  • Sufficiency

13:00–14:00 – Eating and Mingling

14:00–17:30 – Field trips to Hilversum (5 options!)
In the afternoon field trips to Hilversum are organised. Hilversum is the only Garden City in the Netherlands that has been developed on a city scale. Buses will bring you to five different aspects of the Garden City, its architecture, society, and experience. We will study the city developments and the ideas for the future. Buses for Hilversum leave at 14:00.

The Garden City concept has been and will always be in the development. The excursions aim at discussing the current meaning of the characteristics of the Garden City and their value for future planning.


Day 1

Guided field trip to Utrecht Overvecht-Noord

Revitalizing legacy post-war/modernist social housing estates with the community.

  • 14:00–15:00 – Guided visit to Overvecht Noord district. First retrofitted positive high-rise energy building in Europe. Led by Utrecht municipality.
  • 15:30–17:00 – Peer2Peer session – community involvement in social housing in NL. Exchanges amongst social housing providers on reconciling affordable housing with nature through community building. Led by Housing Europe AEDES
  • Location: Oproer Brouwerij, Beyaertdreef 5, 3562 GL Utrecht
      • 15:30-15:45. Social renovation presentation (Woonin)
        15:45-16:00. Dutch social housing renovation (AEDES)
        16:00-17:00. Interactive exercise – guided exchange between associations (Housing Europe / AEDES)
  • The 20th century left Europe with the legacy of modernist architecture and planning, widely known for its functional approach to building and space design. The modernist movement, associated with Le Corbusier in France and the Bauhaus style in Germany, borrowed ideas from industrial production to revolutionise housing construction.

17:30–19:00 – Drinks at Museum Het Schip (TBC)

With the possibility to visit the exhibitions.


Full programme of the conference available here

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