Let's talk about feminist urban planning
A year and a half ago, Tradoctas worked in the translation and English revision of a document related to feminist urbanism and we had the chance to learn more about this interesting topic.
Due to their still strong role at home, women move around cities in specific ways. If they combine work with family life, their journeys to work are often short. They use time in fragments: there is no full day of work and no full day of being away from children.
Women are far more likely to be users of public spaces and their neighborhood streets (during daylight hours), mixing with children, people with disabilities, senior citizens. In many cities, during the day, public spaces are more likely to be women’s spaces. And yet, those spaces are built according to what are assumed to be men’s uses and perspectives. Since its modern incarnation, urban design and planning operated on the basis of the universal or unmarked citizen, but in concrete everyday life, there are no unmarked users, but rather profound gender roles and actors.
It is necessary to build knowledge to further a transformation that gives women more time. This is why feminist urbanism wants to be a part of urban planning design policies and to build sound and convincing knowledge for gendered urban layouts and planning.
Have you heard of architect Zaida Muxí?
"One of the hard things of being a feminist is that you have to reassess your whole life but not everything can be reassessed. We live in a sexist society. If I could choose how to live, I'd love to use this system called ‘co-housing’ which is collectively-owned properties, where you have a smaller place but you share workspaces, a kitchen. I’d love to live a more community-oriented lifestyle.” Zaida Muxi for Arch 360 News.
Zaida Muxí is an architect, urban planner and teacher. She graduated from the School of Architecture, Design and Urbanism (University of Buenos Aires). A few years later, she completed her doctorate from the Higher School of Architecture (Seville University) and became a professor at the Barcelona School of Architecture. She’s also a contributor to the supplement “Cultura/s” from La Vanguardia newspaper.
She’s renowned for her experience on gender and urban design. In 2018, she published the book “Beyond the Threshold. Women, Houses and Cities” (English translation available since 2021). As reviewed by soyarquitecta.net, in it she weaves two architectural topics (houses and cities) together with the stories of women and female architects whose innovative ideas have led to social and cultural transformations as well as the betterment of people’s quality of life.
Feminist architecture networks
“We are architects, we are feminists and we know we have a lot to offer. We are willing to fight with weapons we own as women: dialogue, transparency, transversality, equality, inclusion and altruism.”
@soyarquitectanet is a professional network project which seeks to boost female Argentine architects. It was founded in 2018 and since then they have worked on many activities: amplifying the work of those who came before them, organizing events and talks for their colleagues, offering workshops and panels in other people’s events in their field.
👩🏼💻Its founder and coordinator is architect Cayetana Mercé, who specializes in Marketing and Communications and also works as a writer for Clarín newspaper. Additionally, she was part of the project "An Architect a Day" which was a website made to boost female architects and their contributions in different aspects: architectural, urban and scenic projects, technology, curatorship and publications, artistic productions, politics, social habitat management, theory and teaching.