The University of Oklahoma’s Institute for Quality Communities will host the 2013 Placemaking Conference on Wednesday, April 3, from 9AM until 8:30PM in the Paul F. Sharp Concert Hall in Catlett Music Center on the University of Oklahoma campus. Free and open to the public, the conference features “world leaders in the fields of placemaking, urban planning, historic preservation, and walkability”.

Speakers include:

Retrofitting Suburbia Placemaking Conference Oklahoma OKCEllen Dunham-Jones
Co-author of the 2008 book “Retrofitting Suburbia: Urban Design Solutions for Redesigning Suburbs”, award-winning licensed architect, Vice Chair of the Board of Directors of the Congress for New Urbanism and current professor of architecture and urban design at Georgia Institute of Technology, Ellen Dunham-Jones speaks frequently on issues of urban design, sprawl, planning, changing demographics and public health at conferences that include the United Nation’s World Urban Forum II, the Center for Disease Control’s summit on public health and urban design, the Congress for the New Urbanism, Clinton Global Initiative University, the National Building Museum, GreenPrints Conference, Simon Frasier University, the Urban Land Institute and the National Endowment of the Arts Mayors Institute on City Design.

Placemaking Urban Design Walkability Livability Dan Burden
Executive Director and co-founder of the Walkable and Livable Communities Institute, Dan Burden has consulted with cities around the globe to develop neighborhoods and communities designed for more active, interactive and healthy lifestyles. Burden was awarded the first-ever lifetime achievement award by the New Partners for Smart Growth in 2007 and the Association of Pedestrian Bicycle Professionals and listed by TIME magazine as one of the six most important civic innovators in the world. He has advised more than 3,500 cities worldwide on practices to create more walkable, livable communities and is the inventor of the walking audit.

Ethan Kent PPS Placemaking Conference Institute Quality Communities Oklahoma OKCEthan Kent
An authority in the practice of placemaking, Kent works to support placemaking projects and organizations around the world through Project for Public Spaces, a non-profit planning, design and educational organization dedicated to helping people create and sustain public spaces that build stronger communities. In his more than 14 years with Project for Public Spaces, Kent has learned from and photographed public spaces in more than 700 cities and 50 countries and has been integral to the development of placemaking as a transformative approach to community development, planning and urban design. 

Oklahoma OKC Walkability Urban Design Planner IQCJeff Speck
Author and co-author of numerous books on city planning and architectural design including 2001’s “Suburban Nation: The Rise of Sprawl and the Decline of the American Dream”, 2009’s “The Smart Growth Manual” and 2012’s “Walkable City: How Downtown Can Save America, One Step at a Time”, Jeff Speck formerly served as the director of design for the National Endowment of the Arts. Speck is currently founder and principal of design and planning firm Speck & Associates, from whom the City of Oklahoma City commissioned a 2009 Downtown Walkability Analysis and Recommendations [PDF] report.

UCLA Media Policy Center Public Health Epidemiology Environmental Science Air Quality Pediatrician CDC Center for Disease ControlDr. Richard Jackson
Chair of Environmental Health Sciences at the School of Public Health at the University of California, Los Angeles, Dr. Jackson has done extensive work in the impact of the environment on health, particularly relating to children. Over the past decade much of Dr. Jackson’s work has focused on how the built environment including how architecture and urban planning affect health. Dr. Jackson recently hosted a four-part PBS documentary series, “Designing Healthy Communities”, based on his co-authored 2011 book of the same name.

Better Block Project Oak Cliff OKC Oklahoma IQC Institute Quality Communities Urban Planning Placemaking Economic DevelopmentJason Roberts
In 2006, Roberts formed the Oak Cliff Transit Authority to revive the Dallas streetcar system and later spearheaded the city’s effort in garnering a $23 million TIGER stimulus grant from the Federal Transit Administration to help reintroduce a modern streetcar system to Dallas. In 2010, Roberts organized a series of “Better Block” projects, taking blighted blocks with vacant properties in Southern Dallas and converting them into temporary walkable districts with pop-up businesses, bike lanes, cafe seating and landscaping. The project has now become an international movement and has been featured in the New York Times, Dwell and NPR. In 2012, Roberts was awarded a Champion of Change from the White House as a transportation innovator.

A full schedule as well as information on additional speakers is available on the Institute for Quality Communities’ website; attendees can also register via the OU IQC website.

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