The Academy of Urbanism is a national organisation that promotes successful towns and cities. For a number of years the Academy has also run a programme of Diagnostic Visits. This involves a small team of Academicians spending an intensive few days in a place at the invitation of either the local authority or a community group to assess a particular issue. Visits include site visits, interviews with stakeholders, and facilitated discussions, which are then written up into a report.
In 2018 Lia Ghilardi took part in The Aireborough Diagnostic Visit together with Academicians David Rudlin, Neil Murphy, Tom Walkerand Rob Thompson. The aim was to advise on a masterplan for the collection of towns that make up Aireborough, which lies on the edge of the City Council area of Leeds.
In its local plan Leeds is seeking to allocate a significant number of new homes to Aireborough and the council is proposing that a number of sites in the green belt be allocated for housebuilding. This has prompted concern within Aireborough, and the Neighbourhood Forum therefore invited the Academy to review this situation and to see whether we could find a solution acceptable to all parties.
During the visit Lia engaged the local stakeholders involved in culture, heritage and education in order to understand their aspirations, dreams, and ideas for the future.
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