Participatory planning is a tool for co-shaping public spaces with the direct involvement of citizens at all stages of the planning process. (community members, users directly affected by the project, local business owners, local authority, etc.)
It is a way for the public space of the city to remain a living organism.
Participatory planning is based on the concept of reality control. Does this scheme really work? Will people use it? It is based on the belief that we need to give people a say about the urban development of the living environment. The basic feature is that it is not based on design assumptions but on real wishes and needs of residents.
Participatory processes create space for a community to reflect, ask, and find the solution. When people are able to make their own contribution and turn them into action, you cultivate the concept of local responsibility and conscientious towards the final results.
The notion of neighborhood involvement in the design of a public space strengthens the forces by exploiting the skills, knowledge and resources of each individual. When people are aware of their ability to offer something positive to the planning process, we can trust the concept of neighborhood and create together tough local communities. This creates new social capital and strengthens existing local networks. When people know each other better, they tend to be more confident and are able to make a change collectively.
Open dialogue is an integral part of a participatory planning approach. When people are able to understand that there are different and competitive positions on one issue, they develop a global picture and are therefore more open to exploring new solutions. This gives people the opportunity to meet and work together for a common vision.