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“One of the things I would like to share is how public space can become dangerous in a heat wave.”

Interview with Jean-Paul Vanderlinden
Professor Vanderlinden warns of the vulnerability of public space in cities during heat waves brought about by climate change.

[Duration: 00:02:25 | Language: English]


Jean-Paul Vanderlinden, professor of Ecological Economics and Environmental Studies, was one of the speakers at the Barcelona Training School on Inter and Transdisciplinary Urban Research, a workshop organised by the Ersília Foundation and held at the CCCB from 13 to 16 February 2017.

Referring to the extreme effects of the 2003 heat wave in a city like Paris, Vanderlinden warned of the vulnerability of public space at critical times of rising temperatures when formerly agreeable places can become very dangerous for people. He emphasised the influence a city’s design might have and, moreover, the fact that we are unaware that urban public space consists not only of our visible surrounds but also the atmosphere above our bodies.

Professor Vanderlinden’s favourite public space is the Luxembourg Gardens in Paris, an orderly green space of great quality in the “French formal garden” style, which now includes a beautiful public space story, which he finds fascinating and also a source of pride. He is referring to the comfortable chairs which users can freely move around the gardens. They are public property and the use made of them is impeccable since they remain in a perfect state of repair.

Teresa Navas