Grands Projets in the 21st century: making positive contribution to urban developments?

Grands Projets in the 21st century: making positive contribution to urban developments?

Submission ID:

115

The Number of large-scale, comprehensively planned urban mega developments —or Grands Projets— has been increasing in number and size over the past decades. With their growing presence and power over urban dynamics they pose many challenges that must be addressed in order to leverage on the potential of such projects rather than to succumb to their dominance in our cities. We define Grands Projets as carefully laid-out urban developments that are, in many cases, the direct translation of a city’s political and economic objectives into an urban layout. Grands Projets are comprehensively planned, hosting a variety of uses, and are realised and/or operated under the authority of a single or concerted governing body. As newly built centralities, Grands Projets function as urban landmarks, broadcasting ambitious agendas to their surroundings. In most instances, they absorb primary local and global capital and are driven by political interests, enabling exceptional practices. Grands Projets host programmes and tenants of acclaimed global relevance and, in doing so, impact local economies. However, Grands Projets are not necessarily social centralities with a high density of residences or activities; rather, they are the result of highly controlled development processes and urban environments, which require a meticulous determination of spaces, activities and temporalities.

In this paper, we examine specific Grands Projets’ case studies within eight cities across Asia and Europe: Tokyo, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Singapore, Hamburg, Paris, Barcelona, and London and investigate their potential to make a positive contribution to urban development and the degree to which this potential has been leveraged. All cases are situated in distinct urban regimes and planning cultures, making a transversal, comparative reading both challenging and enlightening, and enabling us to discover much common ground amidst notable differences.

Corresponding Author

Anna Gasco

ETH, Singapore ETH Centre, Future Cities Laboratory

Author #1:

Anna Gasco

ETH, Singapore ETH Centre, Future Cities Laboratory

Author #2:

Naomi C. Hanakata

ETH, Singapore ETH Centre, Future Cities Laboratory

Author #3:

Author #4:

Preferred Track

6. Urban policies

Second Preferred Track

9. The Syndrome of Grand Projects: contamination processes between North-South, West-East, Global-Local

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Contacts

DINÂMIA'CET-Iscte

Centre for Socioeconomic and Territorial Studies

Avenida das Forças Armadas | Edifício ISCTE

Sala D316 1649-026 Lisbon

grandprojects.2021@gmail.com

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