Last word: Coming Together

Michael Hammond, programme director of World Architecture Day 2013, shares details about the event in New York this October, which will bring together architects from around the world to discuss issues in housing.

The aim of the event is to provide a platform for architects from around the world to put their heads together to address some of the challenges facing us in the 21st Century.

It is not 5 people or even 50 people, but 250 intelligent minds focused on making better buildings. We also introduce developers into the mix so that they can see this in action and get inspired by the process and maybe let a little business happen.

When we set up WAD in the UK last year, we always wanted to take the event to our audience around the world.

Now that we are up and running, first stop had to be New York because we have so many strong contacts there.  When AIA NY came on board with the Centre for Architecture venue, we knew that was it.

The first day will be made up of a series building tours around Manhattan and will fire up the imagination of the delegates ready for the main day conference, which is titled: Towards 8 Billion, Housing the next generation.

It will see architects from around the world join forces for a day to look at the massive housing challenge facing most countries over the next few decades. It will include presentations and discussions on slums, social housing, building on water, flat pack housing and a new Berlin concept in which communities are
building their own developments.

The actual theme of housing the next generation was selected because it affects all of us and architecture can and will play a major part in how it rolls out.

We probably tried to do too much last year covering six sectors throughout the day. It is one our problems at WAN – we are always trying to do more,  so this time we are trying be grown up and understand that sometimes less can be more.