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Public Space

Title of the Session

Public Space

Time and Venue

16 June 2015, Marriott Hotel Zamalek – 11:00 am-12:30 pm


Walking around in Egyptian cities, everybody can sense that public spaces are rare and the rare ones are often fenced and not accessible for all. Yet, others might argue that public space is a minor issue compared to other challenges and existing public spaces show that a lot of resources are needed for the maintenance of these. Also, it is unclear if real public spaces that are inclusive will be accepted and frequented by all social classes. Another challenge is how to acquire the land for public spaces, especially in informal areas or inner city areas with high densities. This session discusses if and what kind of public spaces are needed in Egypt, how urban planning tools can help in creating urban spaces that are sustainable public spaces and what we can learn from existing examples in Egypt.

The aim of the Panel is to discuss:

  • Do we have the right to adequate public spaces in Egyptian cities?
  • What are the lessons learned from the regeneration of public space in Luxor? How can we include public space in legislations?
  • How to ensure sustainability of inclusive public space, is it possible?
  • How can planning tools and methodologies ensure the availability of proper public space, and ensure that it is properly maintained and continues to be a safe space for recreation and community gathering?
  • How is MURIS  negotiating public space in existing informal areas and upgrade formal areas?


Dr. Galal Mousatafa Mohamed Said, Governor of Cairo

Mr. Dyfed Aubrey, Regional Director (A.I.) UN-HABITAT Regional Office for Arab States

Mrs. Sohailah El Sawy, Chair The Egyptian Association for Environment and Community Service

Dr. Ayman Ashour, Dean of Ain Shams University, Ain Shams University

Dr. Eman El-Nashar, Prof. of Architecture, Faculty of Fine Arts

Mrs. Sondos Abdallah, Coloring the Grey of the City


Dr. Bassem Fahmy MRTPI, Consultant – Principal Advisor, Strategic Planning and Urban Development Program, UN-Habitat Egypt Project Office