UD3: How to Reframe and Reposition Our Cities so They Are More Enticing and Liveable

The 2018 International Urban Design Conference will be held at the SMC Conference and Function Centre, Sydney, NSW over 12 – 13 November.

The conference will showcase innovations in projects and research embracing and creating transformational change in urban environments.

Joining us at the conference is Mr Dan Johnson, Partner & Group Director at Hoyne who will present on ‘UD3: How to Reframe and Reposition Our Cities so They Are More Enticing and Liveable’.


Our cities are places of culture, business and industry that provide a wealth of education and job opportunities not found in other parts of the country. 54% of the world’s population now live in cities and this figure is expected to reach 66% by 2050. But as our most successful cities grow exponentially, the harder it becomes to create a sense of community and for people to really connect. And as our global population becomes increasingly mobile, our cities become more transient, with populations coming and going, not settling down to become part of a city’s fabric in the long term. As a result, our cities struggle with massive concentrations of citizens, often with no sense of ownership of their environment, social anonymity and no sense of community.

This talk will discuss how we have the opportunity to analyse the many successes as well as the shortcomings of our greatest cities, and use these learnings to reframe and reposition them so they are more enticing and liveable. This is particularly relevant for an evolving nation such as Australia, where we are experiencing an explosion in urban growth. We want to learn from the mistakes of the past, not repeat them.

Using a series of ground-breaking case studies, this talk will explain how we can combat the many downsides of urban life by taking learnings from our cities’ smaller counterparts – villages, and towns – to understand the qualities needed to create a sense of authenticity and community. Doing this is not only beneficial socially but will also give our cities a competitive advantage – encouraging people to visit, open a business there, or invest their money, effectively future-proofing a city and ensuring its success for decades to come.


Dan Johnson is a Partner at leading Australian place visioning and branding agency, Hoyne. A specialist in property branding, Dan works with national and international developers, developing unique campaigns across the residential, commercial and retirement living and aged care sectors. He is passionate about the legacy of good development and the need to create a sense of community and place, regardless of project scale. He is also a key contributor to The Place Economy, Hoyne’s significant resource book that looks at best practice placemaking around the world.

Through a mix of interviews, case studies and research the books aims to demonstrate the categorical link between better placemaking and significantly higher profits; both the returns that developers and investors can enjoy, as well as the coinciding upswing in economic performance and community wellbeing. By showing the outcomes that can be achieved, Dan hopes to inspire conversation and encourage government and private enterprise to take action so that we can continue to enjoy the highest quality of life and leave a legacy for future generations. ­

For more information on the 2018 International Urban Design Conference visit the conference website at urbandesignaustralia.com.au


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