2021 International Conference: 27th World Congress of Architects

Civic empowerment through participation in public space design: Revitalizing parks and playgrounds in Dhaka, Bangladesh

International Proceedings

Author(s): Igbal Habib, Istiaque Zahir & Nayara Nuary Islam

With around 45,000 people per sqkm, Dhaka— one of the densest city on Earth—lacks open public space. The preservation and proper utilization of the existing open spaces would play a key role in making the city sustainable. Many city governments around the globe using planning and design to catalyze urban regeneration create socially culturally inclusive public spaces and promote greening of the cities. Given this, Dhaka North City Corporation has taken the timely initiative of revitalizing and redesigning 20 neighborhood parks and play fields. We have joined this effort as a design consultant. Now in construction phase, these parks have been designed through active public participation right from the beginning. In order to ensure public presence in the decision making three techniques were followed: • Public opinion survey through interview, • Participatory Rapid Appraisal (PRA) method through active group sessions, and • Mine Craft gaming software, with which the users designed the parks directly. The findings were then analyzed and tabulated in a priority list, giving a clear indication of what people want. The designs thus developed duly took into account the needs and desires of the people. We propose to present this process in UIA RIO 2020. The scope of the paper is to see how large-scale SDG goals can be translated into small-scale initiatives. This work can be an example of how governments and institutions can implement SDG principals at the grass-root level.

Volume Editors