Public Space and the Power of Community

| Monday, May 19 | 2:00 p.m. - 3:15 p.m. | Room: Ambassador Salon I |Session Track: AD

Parks and public spaces play a vital role in our communities—they create nodes where people meet, relax and play. But many public spaces in America are under-performing and are often characterized by neglect, unsightliness, or crime. 8-80 Cities has worked to educate and empower communities to transform underperforming parks and public spaces into vibrant and active destinations that contribute to more people-friendly and sustainable communities. This session will arm participants with international best practices, inspiring stories, and simple tools that can be used to transform public spaces.


Emily Munroe, 8-80 Cities
Emily Munroe is the program director at 8-80 Cities. She has led the implementation of more than 25 community engagement projects and has contributed to 8-80 Cities' activities in Australia, Denmark, Mexico, and Canada. Emily has recently spoken at the 2013 Ontario BIA Conference, the 2013 Canadian Complete Streets Forum, 8-80 Cities' 2013 People Make Places Workshop, and Hamilton's 2013 Sustainable Mobility Workshop. She is passionate about authentically engaging people in the process of community development, urban design, and public space planning.

Alyssa Bird, 8-80 Cities
Alyssa Bird holds a bachelor’s degree in environmental studies from Carleton University and is a graduate of the University of Toronto's graduate program in planning. She joined the 8-80 Cities as project manager after finding inspiration from the people-focused approach that 8-80 Cities brings to projects locally and abroad. Alyssa is passionate about understanding the relationship between people's health and the places where they carry out their lives.