On October 30, the second international Reinhold Schmeling’s conference will take place in Riga, this year focusing on the subject of dwellings in Riga. The conference «Riga’s dwelling environment: new architectural horizons» invites professionals of architecture, construction and related fields, as well as every citizen who cares for the development of the housing sector.
A home is one of person’s fundamental rights, however due to the niggling tangle of legislation, ownership and finance accessibility, housing frequently becomes an expensive and unobtainable luxury good. «A peculiar distorted balance has formed in the society that we know as the prisoner’s dilemma of game theory — nobody is satisfied, yet the dissatisfaction is not high enough to stop the process and change something radically,» explains Riga City Architect Gvido Princis.
One of the most important challenges for Riga today and in the future is apartment blocks and post–war housing estates, which still are a home for more than 85% of the city’s residents. If the improvement and maintenance will continue at the current level, it will gradually lead to greater financial, social and ecological losses. The solution may be found in a new socially economical understanding of the form and structure of housing estates. There is an urgent shortage of dwelling planning and management instruments adjusted to the conditions of Latvia that would match both the previously mentioned challenges, and could deal with the changes created by the mobility of residents and new models of employment.
This year the Schmeling’s conference will go into discussions about the dawn of town planning of dwellings in Riga, various levels of housing policies, house–managing models, as well as communities that inhabit the housing estates of Riga. The floor will be given to participants from six countries, including the German architect Mathias Madaus, Chilean educator Jorge Lobos, urban geographer Tauri Tuvikene from Estonia and several local lecturers.
Professor of Technical University Delft Taeke M. de Jong will give a masterclass «Urban design quality, a function of variety» for architecture and urban planning professionals and students. More information on the masterclass can be obtained by writing an e–mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The popular science conference devoted to Reinhold Schmeling, the first city architect of Riga, is organized annually by Riga municipal agency «Riga City Architect’s Office». The conference «Riga’s dwelling environment: new architectural horizons» will take place on October 30 from 9.30 to 19.00 at Zirgu pasts, Dzirnavu iela 46, Riga. More information on the programme, speakers and registration can be found on its homepage.