Norman Foster Foundation Workshop 2018— Urban Mobility

September 2018

The Norman Foster Foundation Urban Mobility Workshop took place on 17-21 September 2018, with the support of BYD. The workshop focused on new urban technologies and how these could open up an exciting range of opportunities in which the infrastructure of movement and the architecture of buildings can physically merge together.

The Norman Foster Foundation Urban Mobility Workshop took place on 17-21 September 2018, with the support of BYD. The workshop focused on new urban technologies and how these could open up an exciting range of opportunities in which the infrastructure of movement and the architecture of buildings can physically merge together.

Could these technologies change the reality and perception of new ways of transportation, such as monorail systems, especially if the supporting structures could accommodate other urban benefits such as elevated decks for cyclists and pedestrians, landscape and city farming? This workshop explored these and other possibilities in the context of three city typologies – the high-rise, high-density city or city core, the medium-rise, high-density city and the low-rise, low-density sprawling metropolis. Respectively the three examples chosen for study were Mexico City, London and the San Francisco Bay Area.

After reviewing applications submitted by hundreds of candidates from around the world, the selection committee awarded ten scholarships to students from the following universities and institutions: Academie Lebanese des Beaux-Arts, Beirut, Lebanon; Confluence Institute for Innovation and Creative Strategies in Architecture, Lyon, France; Faculty of Engineering, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt; Harvard University, Massachusetts, United States; Polytechnic School of Madrid, Madrid, Spain; School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi, India; Tokyo Institute of Technology, Tokyo, Japan; University of California, Berkeley, United States; University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China and the University of Westminster, London, United Kingdom.

 

These ten students engaged with a group of specialists through a series of seminars and lectures culminating in a five-day workshop led by workshop mentor Tim Stonor, Managing Director of Space Syntax.

The Academic Body spanned a wide range of practitioners working in different fields interrelated with mobility, including Laura Ballesteros, Undersecretary of Planning at the Ministry of Mobility for the Government of Mexico City, Mexico; Alfredo Brillembourg, Founder of Urban Think Tank, Caracas, Venezuela/ETH, Zurich, Switzerland;  Tilly Chang, Executive Director of the San Francisco County Transportation Authority, California, USA; Carlo Ratti, Director of Senseable City Lab at MIT, Cambridge, USA; Fernando Romero, Principal at fr-ee Architects, Mexico City, Mexico and Thomas J.Stone, Strategic Advisor at BYD, Shengzhen, China.

The Urban Mobility Workshop included seminars, lectures, one-to-one tutoring and urban architectural tours to learn more about the context of Madrid. During the course of the workshops, participants had the opportunity to engage with the Norman Foster Foundation’s archive and research projects.