11. June 2024

Tactical Urbanism: Opportunities and Problems - Problems and Opportunities

A talk by Prof. Dr. Susanna Schaller within the lecture series Baukultur in Marl


In her 2016 book "Street Fight", New York's former transportation chief describes tactical urbanism as guerrilla urbanism, even if it was strategically developed by the city government to counteract opposition to certain interests and "obsolete thinking," that stood in the way of the mobility transition and the restructuring of public space stood in the way of overcoming. The city sed inexpensive materials such as green paint, mobile street furniture and tubs of plants in order to withdraw the street from car traffic in order to give people a place to stay back. This transformation has worked in large parts of the city by overcoming opposition. In this way, the city gave impetus to a new era of traffic planning. Tactical urbanism can also be used as a methodology for “participatory” planning to activate citizen engagement in the design of urban life. However, since privileged private actors with time, resources and a political network are often committed to reshaping the city, one also has to face the problem of which goals are being pursued and how a city government reacts when people get involved in shaping city life independently without official sanctions intervene to stop gentrification, for example.

Prof. Dr. Susanna Schaller is Associate Professor of Urban Studies and Planning at the City University of New York. Raised in Cologne and moved to Washington, D.C. as a teenager. emigrated, Schaller brings a double perspective to hers
research a. Her book, Business Improvement Districts and the Contradictions of Placemaking: BID Urbanism in Washington, D.C. (University of Georgia Press, 2019) shows how the 1990s saw a new public-private partnership regime and targeted place-making Strategies (such as tactical urbanism and creative placemaking) emerged to upgrade and gentrify areas of the city. She has published her research in international academic journals such as Urban Studies, Urban Affairs Review, Journal of Urban Affairs, Urban Geography, Journal of Planning Education and Research and the Journal of Education Policy.

Baukultur in Marl is organized by the Sculpture Museum and the Adult Education Center in cooperation with the ruhrmoderne e.V. initiative. The event takes place at 6.30 p.m. in the VHS island (Wiesenstraße 22, 45770 Marl) in room P1 and is free of charge - please register at 02365/50356699 or