proposals. “The evaluation method should consider many other factors besides profit margin,” for a start. Leão strongly believes that decision ‑makers should take the city’s overall development into account when examining potential projects. “The fund should approve things which help reshape the city.” There is a consensus among the city’s architects that there is an ever‑growing sense of demand from the population and an undeniable will from residents to revitalise their neighbourhoods, such as city centre. They, like local residents, believe Macao has the potential to become a happier, more liveable and dynamic city, within its constraints. “So why not give people what they want?” Leão asks.
A FUTURE OF POSSIBILITIES
One of the government’s long ‑term goals is to transform Macao into a “cultural capital”, which Landry believes is entirely feasible. To achieve this, he encourages a stronger sense of interdisciplinary cooperation not only between big companies and start‑ups, government, and local entrepreneurs, but also with the community. Landry stresses the need to be open to new ideas, to invest and to experiment, perhaps looking to other cities—such as Helsinki in Finland—for practical models. Landry, Leão, and Bruni have suggested several different ways of innovating and bringing creativity into the city, many of them requiring no monetary or time investment to implement. Lam, of Macao Creations, expresses concern at Macao’s lack of diversity when it comes to an experienced and educated populous, due to the city’s yet nascent university‑level education system. “We [artists] try to do our best, but it is difficult to innovate. Decision‑makers should do something in terms of funding to promote art and education and inspire locals through access to the best training in the world.”
DRAWING FROM PRESENT INSPIRATION FOR THE FUTURE
Landry concluded his lecture by pointing to some already creative aspects within Macao, praising Albergue SCM’s cultural hub as a good example of balancing the old and the new as well as Sir Robert Ho Tung’s restoration project for its contemporary outdoor design. Although Bruni agrees that people appreciate these kinds of spots, she prefers a wider and more connected sense of urbanism rather than simply “planting a park with a sports pavilion, a pool, a garden, a running track, and a library in a single space.” NOVEMBER 2016
Published on Nov 27, 2016
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