The vision of EUGIC is to tell the story of Urban Green Infrastucture in Europe each year. This first conference in Vienna will be the prologue to further discussion over the years to come. There are already many professionals, cities and regions that have been engaged in Green Infrastructure and ecosystem services activities over the last thirty years. However, these have been generally confined to specific cities or countries.
With the creation of a pan-European Green Infrastructure and Ecosystem Services Strategy, many cities and urban areas will be starting to engage in this kind of approach to urban infrastructure. So this first conference is in a city Vienna that has been leading the way, and brings together specific keynote speakers who have been implementing projects in cities across Europe. For implementation is key.
Much research has been done over the years and we need to move beyond the laboratory to delivering Green Infrastructure both in new urban development that is planned but also on the existing urban fabric. This conference however also celebrates the research that is still being undertaken to refine our approaches to landscape opportunities on buildings and at ground level in the urban realm.
We are also keen to engage the citizen of Europe. Green Infrastructure can seem far removed from the average urban dweller. Yet small Green Infrastructure projects – whether on housing, on the street or in parks – can make a huge difference to people’s lives. Green Infrastructure is trans-disciplinary but also needs to include everyone in this story.
We hope you enjoy this conference – the first chapter in an ongoing story and discussion to make Europe’s cities the urban Green Infrastructure stories of the future.