2017 IQC Placemaking Conference

University of Oklahoma


Monday, April 3, 2017
9:30 a.m. - 5:45 p.m. CDT

Norman, OK, United States


Lessons, Modules, and Learning Objectives


All sessions will include presentations and slides from prominent theorists and practitioners.


10:00 a.m. – 11:30 p.m.  Session One: Making Places


Session One features presentations by Fred Kent and Susan Silberberg intended to provide an overview of how the placemaking movement has contributed to positive change around the world. Fred Kent, founder of Project for Public Spaces, will focus on the history of placemaking and the practice of placemaking as advocated by Project for Public Spaces. Attendees will gain an understanding of the core principles of placemaking. Susan Silberberg, founder of CivicMoxie, LLC., and lecturer at the Massachussetts Institute for Technology, will speak about her experiences helping civic leaders turn ideas into action. Attendees will get a glimpse of the elements of success for moving beyond brainstorming or planning toward implementation of placemaking projects.


12:00 – 1:30: Lunch Keynote: Leadership in Placemaking


Jim Brainard will deliver a talk sharing his personal experiences and reflections serving as the mayor of Carmel, Indiana for over two decades. During his tenure, the population of Carmel has tripled and Mayor Brainard has presided over a period of transformation in Carmel. One notable example of Mayor Brainard’s leadership through innovation has been the construction of more than 100 roundabouts to keep traffic flowing in the city. Attendees will learn about the importance of a strong vision championed by a motivated leader to implement community change.


1:45 – 2:45: Session Two: Making Communities


Session Two features presentations by Marcus Westbury and Patrick Kennedy, two community activists who have led initiatives to improve their hometowns. Marcus Westbury is the author of Creating Cities and founder of Renew Australia, an organization that creates opportunities for temporary occupation of vacant real estate to revitalize struggling downtown retail districts. The idea for the organization began with Westbury’s initiative in his hometown of Newcastle, New South Wales. Attendees will see how Westbury identified and negotiated the many invisible barriers to bringing business back to vacant downtowns. Patrick Kennedy is an urban planner and activist in Dallas, Texas, who leads a campaign known as “A New Dallas.” Kennedy’s campaign has advocated for transforming the urbanism of Dallas. One key effort has built credibility and support for the idea of removing an aging elevated freeway that separates downtown Dallas from the rest of the city, and developing new neighborhoods in its place. Attendees will see how well-crafted public campaigns can build support for visionary ideas.


3:00 – 4:00: Session Three: Making Change


Session Three features presentations by Toni Griffin and Mike Lydon, two people who work in the area of community change. Toni Griffin, founder of Urban Planning for the American City and professor at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, will cover issues of justice amid community change. Her work has focused on how design of the built environment can contribute to urban justice and inclusion in cities like Detroit and Washington, D.C. Attendees will gain a perspective on equity issues related to placemaking and planning initiatives. Mike Lydon, a principal of Street Plans Collaborative and co-author of Tactical Urbanism: Short-Term Action for Long-Term Change. Lydon will share how tactical urbanism has become a mainstream tool for professional planners to experiment with community changes. Attendees will gain perspective on how short-term tactics might lead to greater understanding about proposed projects and plans.


4:15 – 5:15: Session Four: Making Great Streets


The closing presentation will be delivered by Victor Dover, principal of Dover Kohl Partners and co-author of Street Design: The Secret to Great Cities and Towns. Streets are the single-most prevalent and important form of public spaces in Oklahoma towns and cities, and rethinking these public spaces as more than traffic capacity is essential to placemaking efforts in Oklahoma. Dover’s presentation will show the importance of great street design and provide examples of how to approach and rethink streets. Attendees will see the wide variety of street designs that can inspire and serve as a precedent for a new culture of public space in Oklahoma streets.


Resource URL


Contact Info

Umit Mander, umander@ou.edu