WaterfrontExpo goes to Liverpool

20 Oct 2008

Municipal authorities, regional development agencies, tourism authorities, investors and developers will be key participants in WaterfrontExpo 2008, to be staged in Liverpool from 3 - 5 November. Clyde Waterfront will be there as  one of the exhibitors.

WaterfrontExpo is the only annual international conference & exhibition covering the regeneration and development of waterfronts - sea, river and canal. It attracts a global audience which includes architects, city and municipal authorities, marina owners and operators, port authorities, tourism agencies, developers, and investors.

The theme of the 2008 event is 'Connecting people with the waterfront' and the main keynote speech will be delivered by the leading international architect David Mackay.

Mackay - along with his practice, Martorell Bohigas Mackay Arquitectes - is credited with much of the planning and architectural design that transformed Barcelona into a major tourist destination and in helping it win the RIBA Royal Gold Medal for Architecture in 1999. This work was praised as "perhaps the most interesting example of urban regeneration in the western world today" by Lord Richard Rogers.

This year marks the sixth WaterfrontExpo and it is being hosted by the City of Liverpool with the official support of The Mersey Partnership and the North West Development Agency. It will be staged in the city's stunning new Arena & Convention Centre located on the waterfront near the city centre. Since the event's launch in 2003 delegates and exhibitors have attended from more than 400 cities and 60 countries.

The 2008 conference programme includes a number of important tourism-related presentations, including the Belfast Titanic Quarter, the role of events and the importance of place branding.

No less than 11 major case studies have been selected from around the world, including from Liverpool's sister cities of San Francisco and Shanghai. From San Francisco, the Piers 27-31 project will be presented by Andrew Wolfram of SMWM Architects of San Francisco, and from Shanghai, the Redevelopment of the Bund Waterfront on the Huangpu River, will be presented by Alex Krieger of Chan Krieger Sieniewicz architects of Cambridge, Masachusetts.

Other case studies include:

•    the important new Titanic Quarter in Belfast, to be presented by Mike Smith, Managing Director of Titanic Quarter Ltd.
•    the role of the Turner Contemporary gallery and exhibition centre in revitalising the fortunes of the seaside resort of Margate, UK, by Victoria Pomery, the Director of the Turner Contemporary
•    major developments from Belgrade, Irvine Bay, La Spezia, Liverpool, and Puerto Rico.

For the first time there will also be a series of special sessions covering finance and investment for waterfront regeneration and development projects. One of these is specifically aimed at informing municipal authorities and developers about the current state of the market.

The event also includes a full programme of site visits and receptions, plus site seeing tours for delegates' partners.

Commenting on the event, Ian Harper, a director of the show organiser WaterfrontExpo Ltd, said: "This year's programme will be the most comprehensive to date and the number of bookings already received suggests it will be the best attended. While it is being staged at a difficult time financially, there will be very real business opportunities for all those companies with the vision and entrepreneurial thinking to make the most of them."

•    There is a dedicated event website at: www.waterfrontexpo.com which contains background information on this year's event plus details of the past events.

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