Glasgow Place Commission Launched

Speaking on the final day of the Glasgow United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) conference on city living, Professor Brian Evans, Glasgow’s City Urbanist, has announced the setting up of the Place Commission.

The Commission will be an ongoing collaborative conversation with Glasgow’s communities, developers, designers and other partners to consider how the built environment can best respond to and serve the new ways in which we live, work and travel – to create a better quality of place for the people of the city.

Over the course of the next year, the Place Commission will meet to discuss how this can happen, with three main themes framing the discussions – the Everyday City (how we experience the city as residents, workers, business people, or visitors); the Metropolitan City (recognising the interdependence between Glasgow and the rest of the Clyde Valley); and the International City (considering Glasgow’s place on the international stage).

“This is a great opportunity to hold a big conversation about Glasgow, its region, communities and places. Working within the context of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and the Scottish Government’s ‘Place Principle’, we will be looking to evidence how integrated action in respect of demographic, climate and technological change can, when designed around people, improve the quality of peoples’ lives and their places.” Prof Brian Evans

Alongside Professor Evans on the Place Commission will be experts from a variety of related fields, each with an interest in the topics to be considered. These independent commissioners are: Ann Allen (Chair, Architecture and Design Scotland); Jude Barbour, Director/Architect at Collective Architecture; Dr Linda de Caestecker, Director of Public Health, NHSGGC; Charles Campion, Partner, JTP and author of 20/20 Visions; Kevin Kane, Executive Director, Glasgow Economic Leadership; Professor Carol Tannahill, Director, Glasgow Centre for Population Health; Rachel Tennant, Chair of Landscape Institute Scotland, and Dr Brian Veitch, Consulting Engineer and Former Director, ARUP.

Councillor Susan Aitken, Leader of Glasgow City Council, said:

“Glasgow is a city still very much in transition, one which is barely recognisable from the post-industrial Glasgow of just a couple of decades ago.

“I’m delighted that a panel of such esteemed independent experts can help support our city’s development as a people-focused city which is s a great place to live, work and visit.”

The recommendations of the Place Commission will be made in Autumn 2020 and will be reported here.

The original article can be read here.

Ian Harvey from Civic Voice announces ‘Community Planning Forum’ as part of campaign for a greater voice for communities in planning

Ian Harvey, Executive Director at Civic Voice, has announced that the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Civic Societies is establishing a ‘Community Planning Forum’ – an independent cross-party group to look at what a ‘meaningful voice for communities in the planning system should look like’. The forum will call on developers to share their approach to community engagement, and ask local authorities about innovative schemes in their area.

“We need early and more meaningful participation in the planning system.” Ian Harvey, Civic Voice

The APPG will promote a ‘carrot and stick’ approach to changing the behaviour of local authorities and developers and will look for evidence and examples to demonstrate that it ‘pays’ for developers to engage earlier with communities. Civic Voice believe that front-loading public participation can lead to higher quality developments.

Against this background, the new Community Planning Forum will bring together community representatives, campaigners, developers, planners and politicians to discuss how to address public concerns about new development, promote better practice by planners and developers and foster more constructive relations overall. The first, invitation only meeting, will be held in September.

Civic Voice will act as the Secretariat to this group. For more information please contact

Below Image: Civic Voice Publication “Collaborative Planning for All” which can be downloaded here.

National Charrette Institute discussed collaboration strategies at CNU 27.Louisville Conference

The Congress for New Urbanism hosted their annual conference, CNU 27.Louisville, June 12-15, 2019, in Kentucky.

On Thursday, June 13, National Charrette Institute’s (NCI) director Holly Madill participated in a panel session on “Working Toward Yes: Dealing with Divided Communities”. Participants were able to learn from the real-world experiences of three practitioners, and one community representative who participated in a particularly difficult public design process. Bill Lennertz, president of Collaborative Design and Innovation LLC and NCI trainer, moderated the session. Other panelists included:

  • Jennifer Hurley, AICP, CNU-A, PP, president and CEO of Hurley-Franks & Associates;
  • Stacie Nicole Smith, senior mediator for the Consensus Building Institute; and
  • George Proakis, executive director of Strategic Planning & Development for Somerville, Massachusetts.

This session provided commonsense solutions to three vexing and common problems:

  1. How to reach groups that are typically not served,
  2. how to avoid meeting fatigue, and
  3. dealing with disruptive participants.

From the NCI perspective, these can be addressed by careful preparation of the charrette process to engage stakeholders, and making sure the charrette framework and individual engagements within it are designed to meet the intended outcomes. Using the creative design process can also make engagements interesting and meaningful.


For more please click here

Charles Campion speaking at the AiA ‘19 Conference in Las Vegas

On Saturday 10 June 2019 JTP Partner Charles Campion will be speaking at the AiA ‘19 Conference in Las Vegas at a session entitled “Community Engagement, Diversity & Inclusion in International Practice”.

Charles, author of 20/20 Visions: Collaborative Planning & Placemaking (RIBA Publishing), will share the platform with chair Alison Laas AIA, Associate at Payette, Boston and Patricia Natke, FAIA, President & Design Principal at UrbanWorks, Chicago.

Architects across the globe are passionate about leveraging the design process to find creative and innovative participation strategies for diversity and inclusion in our communities. The panel includes leaders from different firms who are developing approaches and policies to better engage communities in designing a more inclusive built environment.

Charles Campion says, “Communities add critical economic, social and environmental value to planning and placemaking processes and the United States is where co-design Charrette processes were first conceived over 50 years ago. The AIA’s first R/UDAT (Regional Urban Design Assistance Team) was held in 1967 and the programme is still thriving today. I am excited to be presenting international case studies from 20/20 Visions and exchanging best practice in community planning with colleagues from across North America.”

Objectives of the session

  1. Exploring innovative strategies for community engagement from US-based and international projects that increase diversity and participation in the design process and equitable outcomes for the built environment.
  2. Learning about engagement programs, like R/UDAT, that promote community participation by typically under-represented parties, and interdisciplinary design teams, to drive inclusive and successful project outcomes.
  3. Discovering how designers based in the US and abroad have approached international projects and successfully engaged with communities from cultures, nationalities, and contexts that are different from those of the design team.
  4. Understanding the challenges communities face in increasing equity, diversity and inclusion, and how the built environment can be leveraged to increase opportunities for all community members.

Walking workshop: The future of Hammersmith Bridge, London as a world-class walking & cycling link, Sat 18 May 2019

Venue: Rutland Arms, 15 Lower Mall, Hammersmith, London W6 9DJ
Date & Time: Saturday 18 May 2019, 11.00am – 1.30pm
Book your place at the workshop here
Walking workshop organised by London Car Free Day

10.30am Meet in front of the Rutland Arms pub
11am – 12noon Walk across Hammersmith Bridge with local guides
12noon – 1.30pm Pub lunch at the Rutland Arms and presentations on what the bridge could be like as a permanent walking and cycling connection for London.

Hammersmith Bridge trial as a business-boosting walking & cycling link for summer 2019
Hammersmith Bridge could be London’s most impressive new walking and cycling provision. It has been traffic-free since early April and this meeting will bring together community, business, and local government stakeholders to discuss the bridge’s potential future as an example of world-class walking and cycling infrastructure.

With the Chelsea Flower just around the corner, Car Free Day London has invited the RHS and others to join the dialogue and share ideas for greening bridge over the summer months, showcasing what a permanent walking and cycling bridge could look like. Partners at Meristem Design and Abundance London have been invited to share their ideas for new parklets and native planting on the bridge and at the new public spaces that have been opened up at either end. The Hammersmith BID (Business Improvement District) and its members will also be invited to share views on the bridge’s future function as an attractive new piece of transport infrastructure and public realm.

Representatives from the neighbourhoods most polluted schools and the Hammersmith and Fulham Air Quality Commission will also be invited to participate in the discussion on how a pedestrian and cycling bridge could catalyse better air quality and more active travel across the borough.

Moderated discussion with:
David Chamberlain, Commissioner, London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham Air Quality Commission
Clare Wadd, Chair, London Ramblers
Casey Abaraonye, Chair, Hammersmith & Fulham Cyclists
Councillor Stephen Cowan, Leader, London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham (invited)

Please see details on the proposal for a summer trial of the bridge for walking and cycling here:


Community Planning Pioneer John Thompson receives Urban Design Group (UDG) Lifetime Achievement Award

John Thompson, has been presented with the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award at the UDG National Urban Design Awards 2019.

The award follows John receiving an American Institute of Architects AIA Presidential Citation in February this year, affirming his contribution to the architectural profession and his unique standing in the fields of urban design and collaborative planning and placemaking.

John has had a 50-year career as a renowned architect and urbanist, devoted to improving the quality of everyday life in neighbourhoods. From the very beginning of his career in the early 1970’s as a partner at Hunt Thompson Associates, John pursued a pioneering approach; first community architecture and then community planning, working directly with local people to create places that encourage social interaction and help nurture a strong sense of community, often in areas experiencing significant social and economic challenges.

In 1994 John became founder chair of John Thompson and Partners, now known as JTP.  In 1998 JTP’s multi-award-winning regeneration of the former Caterham Barracks marked the first time that a large-scale Community Planning Weekend (aka Charrette) process had been promoted in the UK by a private developer.

Involving local people in the planning process has since been written into English planning policy (through Localism and the NPPF) and is now a required part of every significant planning application, thanks in large part to John’s influence.

In 2006 John was instrumental in establishing the Academy of Urbanism (AoU), a not-for-profit organisation which now has over six hundred members, including the thriving Young Urbanists group. The AoU brings together the current and next generation of urban leaders, thinkers and practitioners to recognise, encourage and celebrate great places across the UK, Europe and beyond.

Throughout the years John has used his remarkable drive, influence and natural charisma to make a significant contribution to the lives of people across the UK and Europe. David Harrison, one of JTP’s founding partners and known as “Harry the Pencil”, collected the Lifetime Achievement Award on John’s behalf, and said:

“At JTP, with residential developers as clients, John persuaded many to adopt urban design principles and mixed use and even in some cases tenure blind projects, therefore adding vitality, diversity and much needed life to the urban environment.

John was unusual for his time in that although trained as an architect he had a passion for creating good places and saw placemaking as the core discipline in his work and visionary initiatives.

But what I think is the most remarkable thing about John was his ability to convincingly communicate these ideas not only to the hundreds of collaborators, including myself and some others present in this room this evening, but also to the literally thousands of so called “ordinary people” who attended JTP Community Planning Weekends at venues all around this country and overseas.”

The Caterham Barracks collaborative planning process features as one of the case studies in “20/20 Visions” along with this quote from John that encapsulates his philosophy:

“The essence of community planning is simple – all around us we are surrounded by people who have within themselves, whether they recognise it or not, a great wealth of common intelligence and knowledge. If we can tap that knowledge and intelligence we can enrich all the processes that we are involved in, we can bring about much better solutions and we can even involve the people in sustaining these solutions in the future.”

IAP2 Australasia leads call for 2020 to be declared UN International Year of Engagement

The International Association for Public Participation (IAP2) and the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP) are partnering to promote systematic, quality engagement of stakeholders and the public, to help governments and others who lead and design engagement processes to develop structured, well-planned and meaningful engagement.

IAP2 Australasia is working to submit a proposal for an International Year of Engagement and Public Participation.

To find out more click here

UK high streets need cross sector collaboration and shared Vision developed with local community for better future

The House of Commons Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee believe UK high streets and town centres can survive and prosper and their recommendations have been published in the “High streets and town centres in 2030″ report.

However, the report says that urgent action is required to stop the current deterioration, loss of visitors and dereliction that could lead to some high streets and town centres disappearing altogether.

The report recommends that there needs to be “a shift from the retail focused activities of high streets and town centres today to new uses and purposes which foster greater social interaction, community spirit and local identity and characteristics.”

Achieving large-scale structural change should focus on “convenience”, “place making” and creating an “experience” and will require cross-sector collaboration “with a strategic vision for the future developed in partnership with the local community”.

Change will need to be mainly led by the local authority, with the backing of local stakeholders and the wider community to redefine high streets and town centres and ensure their long-term sustainability.

To read the recommendations in full, the report can be found here:

Urban Design Group Event: Charrettes – best practice for 21st Century Placemaking

Urban Design Group Event

Charrettes – best practice for 21st Century Placemaking

Wednesday 06 March, 6:15pm to 8:30pm
JTP, Unit 5, The Rum Warehouse, Pennington Street, Wapping, E1W 2AP

Jane Jacobs famously wrote: “Cities have the capability of providing something for everybody, only because, and only when, they are created by everybody.” But how can communities most effectively participate in shaping the places they call home?

Chaired by Charles Campion, author of 20/20 Visions: Collaborative Planning & Placemaking this event will bring together four speakers highly experienced in Charrette and community engagement processes.

Evening programme:
6.15 Arrival
6.30 Welcome and introduction by Charles Campion, JTP
6.40 Individual presentations by panellists
7.30 Panel discussion & Q&A
8.00 Informal conversations and networking
8.30 Close

First conceived in the United States in the fifties and mainstreamed by the American Institute of Architects R/UDAT programme in the sixties, hundreds if not thousands of co-design Charrettes processes have subsequently been held around the world to bring communities genuinely into the heart of planning and placemaking. Despite the demonstrable benefits, there are still many architects and planners who lack the confidence and expertise to collaborate with the public effectively.

Considering these critical issues will be four speakers including Lynne Ceeney, Lytton Consulting; Nick Taylor, The Piece Hall, Halifax, and; Husam AlWaer, Senior Lecturer at University of Dundee.

For more information please visit:

Charles Campion, author of 20/20 Visions, to speak at Dundee University on Wed 20 February 2019

The Association of Dundee Architecture Students (ADAS) in partnership with The Academy of Urbanism, RTPI Scotland & University of Dundee & JTP kindly invite you to the following event:


“Just as the act of voting is a right, it is inherently democratic to bring people genuinely to the heart of planning and placemaking.”
20/20 Visions: Collaborative Planning & Placemaking (RIBA Publishing, 2018)

Charles Campion RIBA AoU, a Partner at JTP Architects, Masterplanners & Placemakers, joins ADAS to give an exclusive talk on the importance of charrette processes and the involvement of the community in placemaking and urban design. Followed by a Q&A facilitated by Craig McLaren, Director of RTPI Scotland.

Date: Wednesday 20 February 2019

Time: 5pm-7pm
5pm Drinks Reception
5:30pm Talk with Charles Campion
6:30pm Q&A with Director of RTPI Scotland, Craig McLaren

Location: LT 5018
Matthew Building, 13 Perth Road, University of Dundee.

This event is FREE.
Ticket must be acquired for entry.

For tickets and more information, please see link below or click the poster to download: