Superblocks for the Supercity?

Superblocks for the Supercity?

How to turn urban neighbourhoods into vibrant city villages


Join us for this Auckland Conversations as we hear from international urban placemaking expert Salvador Rueda - most famous for inventing Barcelona's Superblocks. Together we will learn about the importance of creating space for people, how these methods have been implemented in different cities and towns across the world and explore whether this approach could be a good fit for Auckland's future. 

What are Superblocks? 

Superblocks – a concept of urban traffic planning intended to calm traffic in residential neighbourhoods – first originated from Barcelona, which was once one of the noisiest, most polluted, and trafficked cities in Europe. To create a superblock, several conventional city blocks are grouped together to create a unified and pedestrian – friendly area (Figure 1). They aim to enhance liveability by minimizing traffic, providing green spaces, and fostering a sense of community. 

Cities around the world are taking inspiration from Barcelona’s ‘Superblock’ concept. Could this human-centred approach be applied in a supercity like Auckland?

Figure 1: a, Barcelona superblock adopted from the urban mobility plan of Barcelona.
Superblock design is characterized by exterior streets surrounding urban blocks and the transformation of interior street space. 
b, The superblock design is further developed into similar urban configurations such as miniblocks or linear blocks.


Wednesday 13 March 2024
5.30pm - 7.00pm 

(Doors open at 5pm for networking)
Waitākere Room, Aotea Centre, Auckland City Centre 

This event is in collaboration with:


Salvador Rueda

Salvador Rueda is one of the world’s most significant urban placemakers. His work has focused on different aspects of the urban environment from an integrated perspective. He has been coordinator of renovation and revitalisation programmes in the Ciutat Vella (Old City) district of Barcelona, and since 2000 has been director of the Urban Ecology Agency of Barcelona, which has worked on a number of projects aimed at reorienting cities towards a more sustainable model.

He is probably most famous for inventing Barcelona’s Superblocks which, simply put, take street space traditionally devoted solely to motor vehicles and open it up to multiple uses (walking, cycling, play etc) by managing vehicle access. These have resulted in some amazing outcomes and Salvador now advises on their implementation in cities and towns across Europe and the Americas.

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