Better Urban Life

Warsaw and Zurich, two metropolitan regions in transformation
10th October 2019

The fast pace of urbanization brings about many challenges that authorities, city planners architects and investors are faced with: enhanced mobility and energy demand, social and environmental concerns as well as altered preferences of people. These challenges are real and need urgent responses. The liveability of cities has become an international benchmark, which is crucial to attract talent and develop sustainably in all aspects.

Point of departure of the conference are two remarkable projects, realized in Warsaw and Zurich. VARSO PLACE, based in the city center, will be the highest building in the EU. ENSEMBLE will combine two skyscrapers with a football stadium. There was a local referendum on the projects.

Zurich and Warsaw are the strongest economic centers in their respective countries. Future growth has to be intelligent to grasp economic opportunities as well as to avoid negative implications for society and environment. Which courses have to be set? Which existing approaches are inspiring when it comes to better urban life?

Let’s talk about the quality of life in cities.



Conference agenda

Registration and welcome coffee


Opening Speeches


Jürg Burri, Swiss Embassy
Michał Olszewski, Deputy Mayor, City of Warsaw
prof. Krystyna Solarek, Faculty of Architecture, Warsaw University of Technology
Marek Szymański, Polish-Swiss Chamber of Commerce



High-rise buildings with different DNA. Zurich and Warsaw in comparison
Werner Huber, Hochparterre

VARSO PLACE – presentation
Jędrzej Kolesiński, Project Manager, Foster + Partners
Marcin Chruśliński, Development Manager, HB Reavis Poland

ENSEMBLE – presentation
Andreas Sonderegger, Partner, pool architects Zurich
Roger Boltshauser, Partner, Boltshauser Architekten AG

Better urban life – collision of perspectives of city planners, investors and architects from Poland and Switzerland

11:00 - 11:45

Monika Konrad
Director, Municipal Office of Town Planning and Development Strategy in the City of Warsaw

Andreas Sonderegger
pool architects Zurich

Jędrzej Kolesiński
Associate Partner, Foster + Partners

prof. Ewa Kuryłowicz
Vice-President, Kuryłowicz & Associates / Faculty of Architecture, Warsaw University of Technology

Paweł Wierzbicki
CEO, Schindler Polska

Agnieszka Kalinowska-Sołtys,
Partner and Board Member, APA Wojciechowski

Coffee break


Slam Battles


Who has the right to the city – inhabitants or urbanists?

prof. Jerzy Hausner, Cracow University of Economics
Marcin Świetlik, Warsaw Development Planning Office / Society of the Polish Town Planners

Mobility – human right (egoism) or common good?

Werner Huber, Hochparterre
prof. Jacek Szołtysek, University of Economics, Katowice

Artur Jerzy Filip, Faculty of Architecture, Warsaw University of Technology

Voting on battles




Part open for young architects and students


Power Speeches

What can business do to improve the quality of life in cities?
Przemysław Powalacz, CEO, Geberit

The role of architects in shaping a better urban life:

Architecture… for successful living
Przemo Łukasik, Owner, medusagroup

Architect in the Heart of the City
Maria Saloni-Sadowska, Chief Architect, Kuryłowicz & Associates / President, Warsaw Branch of the Association of Polish Architects

Glatt! The Manifesto of an Emerging City
Roger Boltshauser, Founder, Boltshauser Architekten AG / Professor, ETZ Zurich

Spatial Planning and Quality of Life in the City
Marlena Happach, Director, Architecture and Spatial Planning Department in Warsaw City Hall

Artur Jerzy Filip, Faculty of Architecture, Warsaw University of Technology



16:00 - 16:15


The conference will be held in Polish and it will be translated into English. / The participation in the conference is free of charge. The registration form is to be found below.



Conference Center at The Tides
ul. Wioślarska 8, Warszawa

Tel. +48 22 322 76 25


Better urban life means also less pollution caused by exhaust fumes. Be eco! Come with a bike, a scooter or with public transport.






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