The 8 80 City: Creating Vibrant and Healthy Communities

The 8 80 City: Creating Vibrant and Healthy Communities

In association with 2WALKandCYCLE 2016 Conference, Auckland.

How can we create vibrant and healthy cities for everyone, regardless of age or social status? What is the role of streets - the largest public space in any city? How can parks improve the quality of life that attracts and retains people to their communities? 

Gil answers these questions while also explaining a simple and effective principle for inclusive city building: ensuring the safety and joy of children and older adults (from 8 year olds to 80 year olds) are at the forefront of every decision we make in our cities. Drawing on his experience as Commissioner of Parks and Recreation in Bogota, Gil presents some of the now widely celebrated approaches to urban regeneration through investments in parks and public spaces. Gil also draws upon examples from cities around the world which demonstrate the power of parks and public space in making lives happier, communities better, and economies stronger. 


Gil Penalosa

Founder and Director 8 80 Cities

Gil Penalosa is passionate about cities for all people. Gil advises decision makers and communities on how to create vibrant cities and healthy communities for everyone regardless of age, gender or social status. 

Gil is the founder and chair of the internationally recognized non-profit organization 8 80 Cities. He is also chair of World Urban Parks, the international representative body for the city parks, open space and recreation sector. Gil’s advice has been sought out in more than 200 different cities across six continents.

Before immigrating to Canada, Gil was Commissioner of Parks and Recreation in Bogota. He holds an MBA from UCLA’s Anderson School of Management, where he recently was selected as one of the “100 Most Inspirational Alumni” in the school’s history. In 2014 Gil received a Doctorate Honoris Causa from the Faculty of Urban Planning at the prominent University of Sweden SLU

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