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Monday, 28 February 2011

My PLACE: Clive Mellon

In this series, we ask practitioners, experts and enthusiasts for their take on the built environment - where are we now, how did we get here, and where are going?

We spoke to Clive Mellon, environmental expert, whose career has combined environmental policy and legislation, project management, ecological survey, site management and practical conservation.


Q. How can we plan for the environment and sustainable development?

A healthy environment is fundamental to human society for the simple reason that we depend on it for food, shelter and our general well-being - the very basics of survival. Diminishing natural resources, climate change and biodiversity loss are all huge issues which will affect the way we live in the future. Planning plays a leading role in how we manage these challenges.  

http://www.allenmellon.com/projects.htm#bird_anchor

The principles of sustainable development are now accepted as a key driving force of governance. Yet how often do we see these principles being side-lined for other (more short-sighted) objectives?


For planning to meet these challenges, I believe that it is time for the very purpose of planning to be modernised. Land use planning is about more than simply promoting the orderly development of land. This should not be the end objective, but just one means of achieving something much more wholesome and holistic. Our planning should guide us towards a more balanced society where natural resources are protected and climate change is a key consideration in all decisions.


We are currently witnessing a major reform of our planning system. The Planning Reform Bill will introduce a duty for practitioners “to contribute to the achievement of sustainable development.”  This is a step in the right direction, but there will need to be a clear understanding of what this means if we are to see any benefits. Decision-makers often think of sustainable development as a balancing act between the economic, social and environmental goals. Yet experience shows that balance equates to trade-off and it is very often our environment which loses out. True sustainability means that all three objectives must be met equally - challenging perhaps, but certainly not impossible. It is a concept that the planning system is well-placed to deliver.


Significant reform of the planning system does not happen every day, so we must make the most of this opportunity.  What about a right of appeal for third parties?  Even a limited concession would help to rectify the rather glaring imbalance in the planning process that its absence represents.



Planning must also play a greater part in protecting and enhancing biodiversity. After all, the new EU target is to halt all biodiversity loss AND begin to restore it by 2020.  Without the planning system stepping up to the mark we will not achieve this target.  Unfortunately PPS2 (on nature conservation) is no longer fit for purpose and we eagerly await its long overdue replacement.  The draft policy statement will be issued soon for consultation, and here is yet another opportunity to move towards true sustainability.

Speaker Profile Five: Ciaran Mackel, Architect

Continuing our speaker profile series in the lead up to the free conference this Wednesday 2nd March ...

Creative Industries Innovation
Date: Wed 2nd March
Time: 9am - 4pm
Venue: Sonic Arts Research Centre
Cost: Free! Book now.

Ciaran Mackel is an architect in private practice who has been involved with, and design architect for, a number of successful award-winning projects, and has over 25 years experience in the profession.


Ciaran Mackel

Ciaran has been architect-assessor on a number of high profile architectural competitions in recent years following his role as Arts Council Lottery panel member, Architectural Policy panel member, and as creative advisor on the built environment to the Imagine Belfast 2008 project, Belfast’s bid for Capital City of Culture 2008.

Ciaran is actively involved in PLACE and also serves on the Boards of a number of community and arts organisations. Ciaran is currently an associate senior lecturer in the School of Architecture and Design at the University of Ulster and is also an architectural advisor to the Ministerial Advisory Group to the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure. [Click here to view the recent report on the first three years of MAG]

Ciaran is also founder member of the think-tank / do-tank, the Forum for an Alternative Belfast. Forum for Alternative Belfast aims to facilitate the development of workable ideas about how Belfast can be developed for all its citizens as well as for visitors. It aims to encourage debate about how we can influence and affect changes to the built environment. It seeks to explore how the mistakes of the past can be addressed and it wants to look imaginatively at opportunities for the future.

Friday, 25 February 2011

MAG: First Three Years Report


A report published by the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure looks at the first three years of the Ministerial Advisory Group (MAG) for Architecture and the Built Environment.

Download: MAG - The First Three Years (PDF, 393kb; via dcalni.gov.uk)

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Related: Read more on the work of the MAG on the DCAL website

Speaker Profile Four: Peter Kelly, Editor of Blueprint Magazine

Continuing our speaker profile series in the lead up to the free conference next Wednesday 2nd March ...

Creative Industries Innovation
Date: Wed 2nd March
Time: 9am - 4pm
Venue: Sonic Arts Research Centre
Cost: Free! Book now.

Peter Kelly

Peter Kelly is acting editor on Blueprint, the leading magazine of architecture and design. A regular public speaker and chair of architecture and design events, he has contributed to numerous art, architecture and lifestyle magazines, and has been a visiting critic and lecturer at international academic institutions including the Architectural Association and the Rural Studio.

Blueprint Magazine
Blueprint Magazine launched in 1983 as the first magazine to cross the boundaries between design and architecture. Following the magazine’s relaunch in September 2006, it was described by The Observer newspaper as the ‘design bible’. Blueprint’s award-winning design sets it apart from other magazines. Published monthly, it is produced in large format, with photography and illustration of the highest standard. The magazine takes a parallel approach to the different design disciplines, reflecting a belief that fashion, product, furniture and architectural design can share ideas. Blueprint aims to use the subject of design to reveal the workings of society. The magazine is about the important role that design and architecture can play in shaping the world.

For more information visit: www.blueprintmagazine.co.uk

Thursday, 24 February 2011

Speaker Profile Three: Pearse Moore, Chief Executive of the Nerve Centre, Derry

Continuing our speaker profile series in the lead up to the free conference next Wednesday 2nd March ...

Creative Industries Innovation
Date: Wed 2nd March
Time: 9am - 4pm
Venue: Sonic Arts Research Centre
Cost: Free! Book now.

The final conference looks at the broader picture of the creative industries in Northern Ireland, and their impact on the wider stage. We explore the imaginative work of businesses and individuals active in NI, the crossovers between the different creative industries, the knock-on effects for other industries, and what can be done to foster a culture of creative work in Northern Ireland.


The Nerve Centre, Derry


Pearse Moore is Chief Executive of the Nerve Centre in Derry. The Nerve Centre is considered one of the UK's most dynamic and innovative multimedia centres. During his time at the Nerve Centre, he has overseen several large multimedia projects and most recently established Magazine Studios which houses their Moving Image Archive, Creative Learning Centre and The Hub, a creative industries support centre. Pearse has also produced several short films for BBC, British Screen and UTV including the Academy Award nominated DANCE LEXIE DANCE (Live Action Drama) and BAFTA nominated animation The Crumblegiant. Pearse has sat on numerous boards including Moving on Music, NI Skills Panel for Film and TV, ACNI Lottery Committee and was a founding director of the NI Music Industry Commission.


The Nerve Centre is a purpose built 15,000sq ft building officially opened in 1999. Housed in this state-of-the-art building are a live music venue, cinema, edit suites, rehearsal and recording studios, and an in-house film production company. The Nerve Centre currently has over 100,000 people benefiting from its various events, programmes and projects. From the outset the Centre attracted significant media attention for its innovative policy of combining art form and activity. More recently the centre has expanded to include the development of Magazine Studios, a 18,000 sq ft facility which was a former youth hostel next door. The Magazine Studios was built over four floors and includes the Northern Ireland Archive of Moving Image; a cinema and computer suite that houses the Northern Ireland digital film archive and the Centre’s own North West Film Archive – And that’s just the ground and first floor! Above this is the Nerve Centre’s Creative Learning Centre which provides educational support to teachers and programme provisions for pupils and resource development and a creative arts support centre – four edit suites and ten offices – which provide audio post production facilities for TV and film. It is clear to see why the Nerve Centre is considered one of the UK's most dynamic and innovative multimedia centres.

For more information visit www.nerve-centre.org.uk

Book now for next weeks free conference!

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Speaker Profile Two: Sara Graham, Creative and Cultural Skills NI

Continuing our speakers profile series in the run up to our free conference next Wednesday, 2nd March...












Sara Graham is the Northern Ireland Manager at Creative & Cultural Skills, the institution objected on tackling the skills needs of the UK within the creative sector, including: Craft, Cultural Heritage, Design, Literature, Music, Performing Arts and Visual Arts.

Creative & Cultural Skills is the Sector Skills Council, licensed by the Secretary of State for Education and Skills. SSCs receive public investment and engage with government departments across the UK. This enables organisations and employers, via SSCs, to have a far greater impact on policies affecting skills and productivity. The organisation’s key goals are:
- reducing skills gaps and shortages
- improving productivity, business and public service performance
- reforming learning supply, making courses and qualifications relevant to industry
Creative & Cultural Skills Department works directly with employers providing information, education and training, promoting work within the creative sector.

For more information visit: http://www.ccskills.org.uk/


Programme for the Creative Industries Innovation Conference

CLICK to enlarge the Programme


Programme for the final Conference in our Creativity & Innovation series.
Free, limited spaces available - book today. 

University of Ulster Lecture by Eyal Weizman



FORENSIC ARCHITECTURE by Eyal Weizman
Research Graduate School Conference, Wednesday 9th March 2011 - 1:30 pm

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Conference 2nd March: Creative Industries Innovation

It’s our final conference in the series and it’s free for everyone!

Date: Wed 2nd March
Time: 9am - 4pm
Venue: Sonic Arts Research Centre
Cost: Free! Book now.

The final conference looks at the broader picture of the creative industries in Northern Ireland, and their impact on the wider stage. We explore the imaginative work of businesses and individuals active in NI, the crossovers between the different creative industries, the knock-on effects for other industries, and what can be done to foster a culture of creative work in Northern Ireland.

Image via Flickr user Andy McMillan

Biographies

In the lead up to the final conference next week we will be taking a look at a different speaker each day on the PLACE blog. Each day until the 2 March we’ll provide a brief biography of the selected speaker. As the venue for the conference is the fantastic Sonic Arts Research Centre [SARC] we felt it was fitting to start our biography series with Pedro Rebelo, SARC Director of Research, who will be speaking on the 2 March. 



Biography One: Pedro Rebelo, SARC Director of Research

Source: http://images.apple.com/uk/pro/profiles/

Pedro has been awarded a PhD in composition from the University of Edinburgh and is currently Director of Research at the Sonic Arts Research Centre and Chair of the Sonorities Festival of Contemporary Music.

Pedro is a composer/digital artist working in electroacoustic music, digital media and installation. His approach to music making is informed by the use of improvisation and interdisciplinary structures. He has been involved in several collaborative projects with visual artists and has created a large body of work exploring the relationships between architecture and music in creating interactive performance and installation environments. This includes a series of commissioned pieces for soloists and live-electronics which take as a basis the interpretation of specific acoustic spaces. In the duo laut with saxophonist Franziska Schroeder he investigates the extension of interfaces and control in interactive performance practices. His electroacoustic music is featured in various CD sets (Sonic Circuits IV, Discontact III, Exploratory Music from Portugal, ARiADA). His audio-visual work "lautomata.3" has recently been awarded the Special Recognition prize from the CynetArt Festival, Dresden.

Pedro conducts research in the field of digital media, interactive sound and composition. His writings reflect his approach to design and composition by articulating creative practice in a wider understanding of cultural theory.


More about Pedro Rebelo and the Sonic Arts Research Centre: www.apple.com/uk/pro/profiles/sonicarts/


Tuesday, 15 February 2011

The Secret Lab launches at UCD Fri 18th Feb


One of our most popular exhibitions at PLACE to date, Notebooks and Narratives: The Secret Laboratory travels to Dublin this week for a run at UCD School of Architecture, Richview until 26th March. Paul Clarke, the exhibition's curator will speak on 18th Feb at 1.30pm.

Notebooks and Narratives: The Secret Laboratory
18th February - 26th March 2011
UCD School of Architecture, Landscape and Civil Engineering
University College Dublin, Richview, Clonskeagh, Dublin 14

- Opening times: Mon to Fri 10am-9pm, Sat 10am-­1pm
- Opening event will be on the 18th Feb at 5.30pm
- Talk by the curator will take place at lunchtime on 18th Feb at 1.30pm

Friday, 4 February 2011

QUB ARCSOC Lecture: Tim Makower - 17th Feb 6pm

Tim Makower of Allies and Morrison speaks at the David Keir Building on Thurs 17th Feb, 6pm