43rd Conference in Venice

43rd International
Making Cities Livable Conference on


Celebrating IMCL's 20th Anniversary:
June 1985 - June 2005

Organized with the
University of Notre Dame School of Architecture

Venice, ITALY
June 20 - 24, 2005


Special Exhibit

  • Europe's Most Beautiful Town Squares
    Photographs & plans of town squares, market places & community gathering places in Italy, Czech Republic, Poland, Germany, etc.

Special 2-day Field Trip/Workshop

  • Understanding European Squares
    Guided tours, discussions & study of multi-functional democratic town squares (Piazza delle Erbe, Piazza della Frutta, Padova), ideal neighborhood community squares (Campo S. Maria Formosa, Campo S, Margherita), urban places for social life (Campo S. Luca), inspirational administrative heart of a great republic (Piazza S. Marco).

Social program

  • Conference events & receptions at:
    Palazzo Ducale, Querini Stampalia, Scuola degli Schiavoni, Accademia; Conference Luncheon at Locanda Montin; evening discussion at Florian's; Commedia dell'Arte; organ concert.


"Those venerable forefathers of ours who a thousand years and more ago set their hands to the task of building up this extraordinary structure must have had -- in addition to enormous will power -- a grain of generous madness."

Diego Valeri

"The new example Venice set in city planning was never taken in, much less imitated by other cities... For Venice pushed even further, right into our own age, the organization by neighborhoods and precincts whose recovery today, as an essential cellular unit of planning, is one of the fundamental steps toward re-establishing the new urban form."

Lewis Mumford

"Amongst the greatest impacts which St. Mark's Square delivers can be counted the approach. This epitomizes the 'surprise approach, explosion of space' concept used in so many of the Italian squares; it is carried here to the ultimate. Down a narrow, somewhat tortuous sidewalk lined by high shops on either side, one sees a small arched opening beckoning in the distance... one is impelled forward with an irresistible urge... And then, before one, dancing and sparkling in the brilliant sunshine, in a fusion of architecture, space, color and pageantry, lies the greatest square in the world."

G. E. Kidder Smith

"...the passage from the dark shadow of a seemingly endless side street into the sunshine of a 'campo' where children chase each other around a marble well shaped like the capital of a fallen column. What a delight for these children, this universe of props: stairways, banisters, low walls, and gates. Venice, capital of tag and hide-and-seek."

Andre Fraigneau

Plenary & Panel Sessions


  • Principles of true urbanism
  • Traditional town planning, classical architecture & civic values
  • The urban square and spirit of democracy
  • Learning from Venice
  • Innovative designs for new urban neighborhoods
  • The idea of the city & the nature of urbanity
  • The city as a work of art
  • Historical narrative of old cities
  • Classical architecture yesterday & today
  • Learning from Old Europe
  • Ecological & social sustainability
  • From agora to marketplace
  • Teaching traditional architecture & urbanism

Continuing education credit is available.

Hotel accommodations

Rooms have been reserved at good rates at two of the finest hotels in the world, the Danieli Hotel, a 14th century palazzo overlooking the lagoon next to Piazza San Marco; and at the Lido des Bains, a grand 19th century bathing hotel on the Lido with swimming pool and private beach.

The hotels provide complimentary motor boat service on an hourly basis to and from the Lido.