The Department of Civil & Mineral Engineering at UofT has launched a series of discussions, which would bring together experts to analyse the impacts of COVID-19 in the area of their expertise. The guest speakers for the first of these discussions, on ‘Just and Inclusive Urban Neighbourhoods', were Prof. Shauna Brail, Prof. Marieme Lo and Prof. Shoshanna Saxe. The discussion was moderated by Prof. Marriane Hatzopoulou.
During the course of this conversation, the panlists highlighted ways in which COVID-19 has revealed the social biases in infrastructure, and exposed the urgent need to reinvent the way we approach planning of neighbourhoods, to make them more diverse and equitable, allowing them to cater to the needs of a broader community. They also discuss how the pandemic has had a more significant impact on frontline workers who must choose between a loss of income or risking exposure to the virus. The speakers also discussed how systemic racism is manifested within city planning and how that can be changed.
Watch the recording of the event here.