Salvador Rueda: “The city is a paella, it’s all about the proportions”

“The city is a paella, it’s all about the proportions.” So said Salvador Rueda, director of the Urban Ecology Agency of Barcelona, at his talk at the Christchurch Art Gallery on Monday 11 March. His additional sage counsel was that the paella becomes inedible if it has too much salt. The city becomes unliveable if it has too many cars…  It’s about putting the citizens in the centre. 

He might be coming to a city near you. If you’re in Auckland, you get to meet him this Thursday 14 March at the joint UDF and Eke Panuku conversation. Join Eke Panuku and UDF Aotearoa  for an evening with Salvador Rueda on Thursday 14th of March at 5.30pm – Click here to register

If you’re in Wellington, listen to him at the 2WalkandCycle conference next week, or at a free public lecture at Victoria University of Wellington’s Faculty of Architecture and Innovation Design on Thursday 21 March – Register here


In case it helps you with your questions, I wanted to share a few we asked him in Ōtautahi on Monday:

Q: How does one start?
A: By setting up the public transport network that is orthogonal (as distinct from radial). 

Q: Is it in conflict with having a strong city centre?
A: No, but you must also have other centres, to increase proximity for people.

Q: Key ingredients?
A: Density AND a mix of users.

Q: What do we do now?
A: Stop building single family houses.

And what was Salvador’s key point on Monday? It was that Christchurch is not different. It has people, roads and buildings, and it has dedicated a lot of space for one type of mobility. 

Thank you Transportation Group and NZPI Christchurch branches for the collaboration with UDF on this memorable event.  


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