About today and the future of three Industrial cities
7 December 2024
Just a day at the office? Well… yes and no. Working on urban planning and future strategies for Ukrainian cities is not daily practice for many of us.
But here we are. Together in the same room. This part of Ro3kvit is the design team as we continue working on urgent needs assessment for Dnipro and long-term recommendations for this war-affected city. Dnipro city has a lot of challenges, including a huge share of IDPs (around 180,000 people). We forme similar teams for Zaporizhia and Kryvy Rih. All together, these three cities can be supported in their needs on urgent damages, issues with IDP’s, connected to long term perspectives.
I am excited about the discussions in the team live in Kyiv at the Ro3kvit office and felt the synergy between the colleagues. Even the sun started shining for a while 🙂
Being supported by GIZ and the city municipalities, we look forward to joining our efforts in order to offer best solutions we can come up with.
I took part in an USAID Forum in Kyiv today. It is very telling that this event, dedicated to recovery strategies in Ukraine, is taking place in a bomb shelter, as air alarm was declared. R for Resilience.
Since the beginning of Ro3kvit in March 2022, the researchers in our team have been telling us: you should start thinking about the future as early as possible. The countries were not ready for rebuilding after Beirut or after the Yugoslav war. I am getting more and more optimistic when I see so many people already planning, thinking, designing and building their own future of Ukraine.
As director of Ro3kvit, I visited Kremenchuk today. Kremenchuk is a town in Central Ukraine with deep connection to Dnipro river. So many challenges related to ecology, energy, security, jeopardized by Russia’s brutal war.
A local ecology expert from Kremenchuk National University gave us a good tour to where the town connects to the river. Warmed by the feeling of how important is Dnipro for the locals. Also met the municipality representatives to pave the road for future collaboration within “Dnipro River Integrated Vision” project, supported by GreenPeace.
The news struck me a couple of days ago: the death of a young Ukrainian poet Maksym Kryvtsov who was defending his land at the frontline.
He first joined the defence forces back in 2014, and then decided to do it again in 2022 when the full-scale invasion happened. He did it, together with many other young poets, artists, architects, teachers, policemen, bakers and plumbers that this war has taken forever.
The war made him to re-invent himself, without losing himself; he was still a poet. But he got killed. And that is where it ended for him. Even though his work continues.
Because Maksym was still writing poems. He wrote about the frontline, about the war. And shared insights in a way pictures often fail.
The last poem that Maksym published on facebook two days before he died, ends with these lines: “Let it already be spring So I can finally bloom As a violet”
Honestly, I do not understand all of what he wrote. But it is inspiring, scaring, hope-giving, strengthening. But unfortunately, also Maksym is yet another reminder that Ukraine is sacrificing its passionate, talented people just to be able to exist as a free country.
I’ll repost the last poem he wrote in the comments below.