LDA ARMENIA CONFERENCE ON “THE ROLE OF CULTURE IN THE URBAN DEVELOPMENT” (Gyumri, AMR, 15 December 2012)
“Gyumri city has a great potential to become attractive for the tourists” with these words historian, senior lecturer and sociologist of the French Paris 8 University Nora Seni opened the conference on “The role of culture in the Urban Development”.
The conference took place on 15th of December, in Gyumri in the art school hall after N. Tigranyan at the initiative of Armenian Local Democracy Agency in cooperation with the French Embassy in Armenia.
There were about 40 representatives from the cultural hearths, civil society and educational centers.
Nora Seni shared her experience and knowledge on urban development pointing out culture as a main tool to promote tourism especially in the industrial cities. If in 60-70ies the cities were built around one trade centre now the cultural hearths more likely museums and libraries are more dominant in the centres of the cities. The city Bilbao is the best example. It began to develop as soon as a museum with a specific architecture had been built there.
She also added that in France there are several cities that used to be industrial ones. And due to the museums that have been built on the territories of abandoned factories, the city has become an attraction for the tourists and the city development was promoted.
Surely, for this the assistance of the government is vital in order the culture is not centralized in one city.
The French Embassy in Armenia can support to create foundations, find sponsors that will finance such cultural projects.
The advisor of the culture and cooperation department of the French Embassy Jan-Michel Kasbarean clarified why Gyumri city has been chosen for sharing this experience on urban development: “Gyumri has been considered to be an industrial city, it owes historical and cultural values, has strong will to overcome difficulties, and culture can become a trump for the city”.
The participants shared with the lecturer the problems and main needs that puts obstacles for the culture development in Gyumri and expressed willingness to support the ideas of French Embassy for cultural development in Gyumri.