President, Centre of Urbanism
Chisinau, the capital of Moldova, went through a difficult post-soviet period of transition. To this day, many of its residents continue to think that “the state shall take care” of the city. Citizens are hardly ever involved in the decision-making processes of the municipality. The city lacks qualitative, inclusive public spaces where people from different backgrounds can interact. Once a garden city, today Chisinau is a parking city.
Privatization and commercialization of the urban space, lack of civic participation, lack of proper infrastructure for pedestrians – these are the main challenges Chisinau is facing and that Team Chisinau is addressing with their Actors of Urban Change project.
Team Chisinau wants to transform a street used mainly as parking space in the center of Moldova’s capital city into a lively pedestrian public space. In order to do this, they will work together with citizens, artists, activists, students, businesses and the local administration to create an inclusive space that stimulates interaction, communication and participation in urban life.
The goal of the project is the closure of Veronica Micle Street for cars and its transformation into pedestrian use. To promote and realize this idea, Team Chisinau will organize a series of participatory workshops with the involvement of civil society, professionals, students, businesses and all those who want to get involved.
At the same time, the team will install a temporary platform, which will serve as an information center about the changes that the street will go through. Meetings and talks about the transformation of the street will take place in this space. Through an open and participative dialogue, the team hopes to establish the needs and visions for this new space. With that, they want to send the message that regular citizens have a voice in shaping urban spaces.
“We believe that this space will be actively used by local inhabitants and workers in the area. This will be an inviting, pleasant, friendly, secure space that will attract both locals and visitors to the city.”