The 8th of November marked the
70th anniversary of the World Town Planning day. First initiated in
1949, this day aims at stimulating the interest of both the professionals and
the general public in urban planning.
To mark this special day a roundtable was organised by the Ministry of Environment
and Spatial Planning/ the Institute for Spatial Planning in partnership with
the Inclusive Development Programme. This event brought together
representatives from both the central and the local administrations, academics,
and professional urban planners. Students and young people, who have been
involved in the Inclusive Development Programme, were also present and have
fuelled the discussion with fresh ideas and observations.
The overarching theme of the roundtable was ‘the neighbourhood’ considered
as a key scale in spatial planning. After discussing the regulations in force
and the progress made toward their implementation, the floor was yield to Ilir
Gjinolli, professor at the University of Pristina, who talked about the
social relevance of the neighbourhood. Transforming theory into practice,
representatives from the Municipality of Pristina then presented a project
aiming at creating more affordable housing.
Young people then took the floor to share
their reflection and experience. We first heard about the observations and ideas of
students in architecture and social sciences who worked during an entire week
in Mitrovica South to think about the possible development of the neighbourhoods situated at the south of the Iber River. Each group presented the result of their work, highlighting
the key assets they identified and the main priorities for a sustainable
development of the zone. The river, the artificial lake, and the green spaces
often stood out as essential assets of the area whereas solving mobility challenges
was pointed out as a priority to develop the neighbourhoods. Improving the
connection to the rest of the city, enhancing the quality of the roads,
creating bike lanes, and improving the lightning are some of the proposals
which have been put forward by the students to reshape and sustainably develop
Before opening to a discussion, we finished the roundtable by hearing from
the young people and students who helped collecting data in Vushtrri in support
of developing the Municipal Zoning Map. They shared their feedback and their
observations stemming from their experience in collecting data on the
settlements of the municipality of Vushtrri. Although they witnessed the
financial difficulties in different neighbourhoods with some abandoned houses,
this experience has left them hopeful as they discovered all the human and
environmental resources Vushtrri holds.
After this fruitful roundtable and the discussions which ensued, this event
was brought to a close with the announcement of the winners of the photography
competition which has been organised on the topic « Get to know my
The 25 shortlisted photos have been
exhibited in the hall of the Rilindja building.
According to the professional jury
composed by both photographs and urban planners, the three photos which stood
out were « The Boy with the bicycle » by Valdrin Fetahu (1st
place), « The Pumpkin Seller » by Shenoll Ismajli (2nd
place), and « The Football Game » by
Astrit Maloku (3rd place). Congratulations!
With an artistic twist, this event reminded us of both the importance and the potential the neighbourhood holds in thinking the future of our cities and settlements.