- Public Participation and Citizen Control in Buenos Aires: New Limits for urban Planning?    click here to open paper content274 kb
by    Mignaqui, Iliana | ilianamignaqui@arnet.com.ar   click here to send an email to the auther(s) of this paper
Short Outline
This paper will present urban projects that emerged from citizen involvement in Buenos Aires City, and will examine the articulation of public and private actors´ interests, negotiation mechanisms and how these conflicts appear in the media.
Metropolis management is one of the great challenges for the 21st century. Territorial impacts, derived from worldwide economic restructuring and the adaptation of large cities to a global economy, have not only put into a crisis the State’s role and long term urban planning contexts but also its tools.
In Latin America, large metropolises face selective modernization and social polarization processes, which increasingly worsen historical inequalities. Although democratic governments and participative practices for their inhabitants regarding decision taking have strengthened, there is still a long way to go.
In Buenos Aires City, after a decade of autonomy (1996), successive city governments have been unable to pass neither the decentralization of its territory (200 km2) in communes nor urbanistic and urban planning instruments to guide its future development: the Strategic Plan (metropolitan scale) and the Urban Plan (local scale). On these instruments depends the updating of the codes that regulate land use, buildability and the environment. Local associations and social movements claim for the authorities to pass those laws and require answers to their demands.
This paper will present urban projects that emerged from citizen involvement and will reflect on the weakening and fragmentation of urban planning policies and the ineffectiveness of current instruments. It will also attempt to answer how the different logics and interests of public and private actors join together in the production of the urban space, investment location and shaping of high priority urban projects; what their negotiation and control ability over public power is; how urbanistic norms are constructed and perceived from different actors´ perspectives; and how this debate is shown in the media.
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