arch-peace news and articles


La U. de Chile y la destrucción de Vicuña MacKenna 20: Conversación con el Arquitecto Miguel Lawner

The following article (in Spanish) discusses a controversial situation around the proposed demolition of a building of historic value (yet not declared heritage). This building belongs to the University of Chile, the most important public university in the country that as one of its principles, claims to be custodian of the history and heritage of the nation. Nevertheless, under the thin justification of "progress" and the satisfaction of the need for more space, the university is ready to demolish. The issue goes beyond the future of the building. It touches on values, it is about knowledge and understanding the importance of heritage and raises the question about to whom these buildings belong to (particularly when the "owner" is itself publicly owned).

La discusión en torno al nuevo proyecto para Vicuña Mackenna 20 (VM20), donde se propone la demolición del antiguo edificio, se ha manipulado al punto de crear la impresión de que solo pueden existen dos miradas, excluyentes la una de la otra.

El problema se nos presenta en la forma de dos bandos, o de una dicotomía artificial e intencionalmente impulsada. Por un lado, quienes están por la demolición, justifican esta en pos del "progreso" y de la necesidad de edificaciones para institutos y alumnos de la Universidad de Chile, hacia quienes la Universidad tiene deudas infraestructurales pendientes. Por otro lado, a quienes intentan salvar este edificio patrimonial (reconocido o no) se los demoniza haciéndolos parecer poco solidarios con las necesidades de los demás. Detrás de este discurso, existe otro incluso más perverso—un discurso ideológico y mutuamente excluyente con el que se supone que cada una de estas dos miradas se alinearían—. 
Fig. 1: uno de los patios de la Facultad de Arquitectura y Urbanismo. Edificios que Miguel Lawner rescató de ser demolidos.
Por supuesto que ni una ni otra posición puede ser tan estrecha. Extraña además que sea la Universidad, o sus representantes, los que en forma directa o indirecta utilicen este tipo de simplificaciones, las que son notorias por promover la ignorancia y la descalificación de quienes piensan en forma distinta.


Event series - Our Homes, All Right? (Volume 1) movie night,Thursday 21 May 2015.

Dear friends,

Since completing our Strategic Plan last year, we have been focused on working towards our fourth goal: 'stand up for quality affordable housing and the right to shelter'.

In collaboration with Friends of Public Housing Victoria, Architects for Peace invites you to a film night: Our Homes, All Right? (Volume 1) to discuss the issue of transfers in public housing to non-government housing providers and its effect on public housing tenants. We hope you can join us!

Date: Thursday 21 May 2015
Time: 7 - 10pm
Venue: North Carlton Railway Neighbourhood House
             20 Solly Avenue, Princes Hill VIC

Guest speaker Fiona Ross, spokesperson of Friends of Public Housing Victoria will present a talk on the effects of public housing transfers in Victoria. This will be followed by a screening of the film Rent Rebels / Mietrebellen (Germany) to look at gentrification and forced evictions in Berlin with public housing tenants fighting to stop the displacement of their community.

Light refreshments provided.
Gold coin donations are appreciated.

Check out our Facebook event here.
Entry is free, no RSVP required.

Event sponsor: ArchiTeam

We are looking forward to seeing you there!


Architects for Peace, Project #1. Workshop 21st March 2015


A4P Project #1 is underway for 2015, and we need your help!

On Saturday 21st March we'll be meeting to form working groups to plan for a Film Screening we'll be hosting. The films will address issues around affordable housing and the right to shelter, Goal 4 of our 2014-2018 Strategic Plan.

Can you assist us in planning this important first event for Architects for Peace?

The details for the workshop to Plan for the Film Screening are:

When: Saturday 21st March 2015
Time: 1pm- 4pm
Where: Curtain Place Gardens, followed by North Carlton Library

This workshop will provide opportunities to
- be a part of a working group in: fundraising; communications; and/ or event planning
- be part of a close knit and active team working toward a clear objective
- connect with long standing volunteers in the organisation with opportunities for mentoring

If you'd like to come along or to learn more, please register your interest at:

In the meantime, if you haven't already, please check out our Strategic Plan


Strategic Plan 2014-2018 now online!

Our Strategic Plan is now online and available to download here.

This plan represents an exciting new direction for A4P and will guide our operations over the next four years. Four key goals have been identified:

We are currently developing an Action Plan to work towards these goals through specific projects and are keen to hear from potential collaborators. Do you have an idea for an event, a campaign or a resource that you think might align with Architects for Peace values and goals? Would you like help to develop and implement your idea in collaboration with our team?

While we cannot fund projects, we can offer the skills of our team of volunteers, many with expertise in design, urban planning and construction, to help you realise your idea. We are interested in hearing from people from a range of backgrounds - not just the built environment - and a range of locations - not just Australia. If you are new to A4P, make sure you read through the plan first to familiarise yourself with our vision, mission and values. Please send enquiries and proposals to We look forward to hearing from you!


India’s Daughter: for the right to walk free and without fear

Image source: NDTV India News
There cannot be social justice, solidarity, respect or peace when women, who represent more than half of the world's population, are exposed to violence.

Women in many countries are not granted the same rights as their male counterpart. In many countries too, women have no right or access to education. Furthermore, in too many countries women suffer or are exposed to discrimination, abuse, brutal beating, rape and murder.

BBC Delhi Nirbhaya Documentary full BBC India's Daughter HD from AwaitNews on Vimeo.

Many, if not most of the Architects for Peace committee and members are women and we would like the freedom that many of us enjoy to be extended to every woman.

We were pleased to learn that a documentary entitled India’s Daughter was produced by the BBC, a documentary aiming to inform and sensitize society about the situation that women face in India. Such a documentary has the power not only to inform, but also to educate society, so violence against women could become unacceptable and something of the past. However, India’s Daughter has been banned in India, a censorship decision that is both shameful and inexcusable. Unfortunately, in a move that is no better than that of the Indian government itself, "the BBC has launched a much more severe, global ban—the broadcaster has asked Google to remove all copies of the documentary, viewable anywhere in the world, from YouTube, citing copyright infringement."

Architects for Peace stands for the right of all women to be treated equally in their community. We stand for the right of all women to be respected and to contribute to her society in a manner that she sees fitting, and for women everywhere to enjoy their “right to the city”—walking free and without fear.

To commemorate Women’s day this year, we wanted to share with all of you (women and men) the BBC's banned documentary India’s Daughter.

If you have watched the documentary and feel disgusted by the comments of defence lawyers, we would encourage you to sign a petition aiming to "Initiate investigation and take appropriate action against Nirbhaya defence lawyers."