The Available City | Wed 28 July 2021 | Networking Breakfast

The Available City | Wed 28 July 2021 | Networking Breakfast

The Available City | Panel Discussion | Wed 28 July 2021 

This 1 CPD talk that proceeds this event was live streamed via Zoom on the 29th June 2021. If you missed this webinar, a recording will be made available for you.

Wednesday 28 July 2021 
07:00-09:00 AM (AEST)
730 Brunswick Street, New Farm 



During the latest COVID-19 lockdown on the 29th of June we heard from Professor David Brown via Zoom. David spoke about The Available City, the theme and focus of the 2021 Chicago Architecture Biennial, an urban design framework, developed through past Biennales and Biennials, that focuses on the potential of Chicago’s 10,000+ city-owned vacant lots as a landscape of collective spaces. It is an improvisational approach, informed by improvised music, that reveals a way in which collective spaces in neighborhoods can build into a new urban system. By design, it promotes a collaborative exchange between architects and community organisations and residents as the basis for collective spaces that are diverse in forms and activities and develop over time.

David’s overview of The Available City, as a biennial engaged in the making of the city, considered this relationship further along with questions regarding policy and how a changed point of view can offer new possibilities, who participates in the design of the city, improvisational organisers of the city, and the exponential impact of small elements in aggregate.

This face to face event will build on David’s lecture, and will be a cross-institute panel discussion about the themes he has raised, including on citymaking and the diverse engagement of residents and stakeholder when designing urban places. 

If you did not see David’s original lecture, a recording will be made available for you to watch in advance of this panel discussion.

This event is a collaborative effort of the Australian Institute of Architects, the Planning Institute of Australia, and the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects.

We are meeting for breakfast at the gorgeous MARKIAN showroom for a Q&A panel session with representatives from each of the three professions (Architecture, Planning, and Landscape Architecture) and cross-Institute networking to further the discussion on citymaking and diverse engagement of residents and stakeholder when designing urban places. Coffee from an award-winning local café and breakfast from a local supplier awaits the attendees at the venue. Join us for a conversation around the topic initiated by David's lecture and networking over breakfast!




Professor David Brown is a designer, researcher, and educator based at the School of Architecture at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Brown investigates non-hierarchical, flexible, and variable approaches to urban design. For more than a decade, Brown’s work has focused on The Available City, an ongoing speculation on the potential of Chicago’s city-owned vacant land. Brown’s work has been exhibited in the Venice Architecture Biennale (2012), the Chicago Cultural Center’s Expo 72 (2013), the Chicago Architecture Biennial (2015), and received a grant from the Graham Foundation in 2011. David Brown is a long-time collaborator of the Chicago Architecture Biennial, having been a participant in the inaugural 2015 Biennial and presenting two pop-up exhibitions and a series of youth programs for the 2019 edition.



Christie is a Principal Planner with PSA Consulting and has over 14 years of experience in strategic and statutory town planning, urban strategies and research. She has a strong focus on practical planning for people-centric outcomes and consultative planning. Her strengths lie in integrating development objectives with commercially practical planning, quantifiable analysis, or immersive stakeholder consultation. In building these strengths Christie’s key areas of experience are in land use analysis, community infrastructure planning, and strategies and research to inform governmental policy.



Melody Chen completed her architecture degree at the University of Queensland in 2005 prior to co-founding architecture practice Atelier Chen Hung with James Hung in 2008. Her experience of living in both Taiwan and Australia sparks curiosity in how cultural contexts influence the production of architecture, in particular questions around material hierarchy and occupation of landscapes. In collaboration she has led a series of highly provocative and memorable built works in the suburban and native landscape locations. Melody is also a design tutor and regular guest critic in various universities.




John is principal of John Mongard Landscape Architects (JMLA), a Brisbane-based practice focused on collaborative place making. John specialises in planning and implementing complex public space projects which highlight local culture and broad community interactions. He has orchestrated teams of designers, builders and artists across towns throughout Australia, sometimes project managing hundreds of creative participants in his place making projects.  JMLA have focused their research into sustainable options to suburban sprawl, culminating in their work on sustainable infill development . The award  winning Greenspace Strategy for West End plans for the re-purposing of  over 11 hectares of unused crown lands.



This presentation is equivalent to 1 hour/point of formal CPD and will deliver outcomes related to the following Competency/s from the National Standard of Competency for Architects:

1.4 Identification of factors that may impact on client project requirements and objectives.
2.6 Preparation and analysis of project development options in response to project brief.
3.1 Design response integrates the objectives of brief, user intent and built purpose.
3.2 Application of creative imagination, aesthetic judgement and critical evaluation in formulating design options.
3.3 Design response incorporates assessment of the physical location and relevant wider regional, contextual and environmental issues.
4.2 Evaluation of design options against values of physical, environmental and cultural contexts.


Learning Outcomes

At the end of this session participants should be able to:

  1. Examine improvisation as a method for conceptualisation of new urban systems
  2. Discuss inclusive practice and stakeholder engagement in creating inclusive urban public places
  3. Explore collaborative exchange processes between architects and community organisations and residents
  4. Identify the city as a landscape of an extended network
  5. Recognise responses to ideas for spaces offered by community organisations and residents


Non member $49
Member $49 
SONA Student $19

What Do I Do Next?

REMEMBER: this is a live event, please ensure your attendance on the day.

  1. Hit the “Take me to my course” green button in your confirmation email to take you to the course material on our online CPD platform.
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  3. Accept the T&Cs if it’s your first time on the online platform. And hit “my dashboard” to find your purchased course.
  4. Undertake your course work at your own pace.
  5. Once you have completed all the course material, you will be prompted to complete your assessment and feedback, after which your formal CPD certificate will be made available.