CIVITAS Forum: Sharing (the City) is Caring (for People)
In Ljubljana, the beginning of October was coloured in sustainable urban mobility, since the most important European conference in this field, the 13th CIVITAS Forum, took place in our capital. A record number of participants, namely, some 560 people from 48 countries, met to discuss, share and experience the meaning of sharing the physical and social space of the city.
Who were the attendees and what they have agreed on?
The attendees were a blend of political representatives from several European cities and experts in mobility, spatial planning, environmental studies and other aspects of creating friendlier cities. The event was especially marked by distinguished guests from Slovenia and abroad, including high representatives of the European Commission, who all agreed on one point: Ljubljana can be proud because in a very short time it implemented numerous measures for the improvement of the quality of life, and its efforts, which are resonating not only Europe but in the wider world, can serve as an example to other cities.
What about the venues?
The main venue of the conference was the CD Congress Centre Ljubljana, the conference dinner was hosted by the Mayor of Ljubljana Zoran Janković and European Commissioner Violeta Bulc in the Grand Hotel Union, while the social evening took place at Orehov Gaj, a green venue in the north of the city.
Site visits and other accompanying events enabled the participants to get to know Ljubljana more thoroughly, especially its numerous novelties oriented towards sustainability. The Deputy Mayor Prof Janez Koželj led a bike tour through the architecturally rich city, the ‘pedestrians’ walked through the renovated city centre and visited landmarks from the times of Roman Emona, and the Ljubljana passenger traffic company LPP organised a study visit presenting environmentally and socially friendly technologies and public transport services.
The proud message of Ljubljana Mayor Zoran Janković
“I also express pride at the conclusion of this outstanding conference which brought into the most beautiful city in the world three times more participants than previous CIVITAS Forums. I should especially underline the significance of solidarity reflected in joint efforts towards an even ‘greener’ future for the coming generations while ensuring high quality of life for the present generation. If in one place we can present the best projects and learn from each other we can all be even better and continue to please our residents,” and promised that Ljubljana will continue to follow the sustainable vision responsible for the prestigious title European Green Capital 2016 and two European Mobility Week Awards.
What the CIVITAS Forum actually is?
The CIVITAS Forum is a network of cities investing their efforts in the development of sustainable urban mobility, established in 2003. It is comprised of over 200 European cities – those that have participated in projects co-financed by the European Commission within the framework of the CIVITAS Initiative and those that are following the guidelines and policies promoted by the CIVITAS Initiative in their implementation of sustainable mobility.