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At the borders migration can be photographed. In cities it can be solved. #reSITE2016

Globally renowned sociologist and professor at Columbia university Saskia Sassen, the New York-based architect designing microunit housing for young people and small families, Mimi Hoang, and Ursula Struppe, the Director of Vienna Municipal Department for Integration and Diversity: these are three of many extraordinary women that will come to reSITE 2016: Cities in Migration to speak about how cities can utilize the potential posed by migration for sustainable urban development. NYC Planning Commissioner, Carl Weisbrod, will talk about NYC’s path to greener streets and affordable housing, the architecture critic of The New York Times, Michael Kimmelman, will highlight the links between climate change and migration – a hot topic following COP21 in Paris- and Martin Rein-Cano, designer of the prize winning Superkilen urban park in Copenhagen is expected to give a keynote address about designing with immigrants needs in mind. reSITE’s message to political strategists: come to Prague´s Forum Karlin on June 16 and 17 to find the hot topics for your future electoral campaigns.

Myths and facts on 21st century urbanism

Following global interest in the Paris accords for climate change solutions at COP 21 there is no better time to attend reSITE. As more-and-more millenials want to live in cities, politicians should focus on urban development solutions as their key theme that can help them gather political support - if they take the right position.

Creating livable and people-centred cities is something that city dwellers are deeply interested in, as this is a topic that directly pertains to their everyday lives. “Our long-term goal – that we will meet again at the upcoming reSITE 2016 conference – is to bring politicians, the civic sector, architects, investors and developers to one table to establish a dialogue between them. And, to correct a few myths that have put the brakes on sustainable urban development in CEE,“ explains Martin Barry, the founder of reSITE. These are the most common mistakes we have encountered during our 5-years long activity:

What works in another city cannot be implemented in our city. NO. Most of the urban and economic mechanisms can work the same way whenever in the world, if implemented in the right scale considering the local context and decision making structure. For example, a neighborhood designed for pedestrians generates 60 % more retail income than a zone where people commute in cars.

2.    No major change can be achieved in 10 years. NO. A decade is enough time to consequently change a city. Over the course of 12 years NYC re-zoned 124 neighborhoods, 40 % of the city. That’s 12,500 city blocks. And, 90 % of new development in NYC is within a 10-minute walk of a subway or park; with some 200,000 new affrdable units being built as you read this. Vision and leadership are the key. Carl Weisbord, one of reSITE 2016’s speakers will talk about this in detail.

3.    Migration is a huge problem for cities. NO. Think about this: if Czech cities can’t attract refugees of civil war, who can they attract? Outflow of citizens is a much bigger long-term threat. Every city should have the ambition to attract new residents. Only livable and vibrant cities are magnets for smart young people and investments.

4.    Migration must be solved at the borders. NO, NOT ONLY. Focusing on borders only raises fear and hatred. The true and sustainable solutions can be found in cities – natural centers of human migration for millennia.

5.    My city doesn´t have finance to carry out big visions. NO. Really strong visions and leadership can attract unlimited investment. Vision is the problem, not money.

6.    Public sector and private investors can’t find common interest. NO. Only quality public spaces make any private investment valuable. The private and public sectors must cooperate.

Meet the world’s top experts in Prague

40 leading thinkers from 20 countries will speak at reSITE. The list of key speakers is updated daily on


We expect more than 800 delegates from Europe, Americas and Asia: politicians, investors, developers, architects, urbanists, civic initiatives and activists. We expect over 150 of the Czech Republic’s largest real estate investors and developers alongside mayors and nonprofit initiatives. What to expect at this high level event? Inspiration, successful solutions, new contacts from the Czech Republic and other countries and a platform that supports cooperation and understanding among different professionals involved in urban design and development.


VIDEO: See the reSITE 2016 video trailer! Creative direction by Yulia Yakushova, production and animation by Canal 180.


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