The Exchange is an opportunity for international visionaries who have had remarkable success in their field to share their story with local government and business leaders, teachers and students, those interested in a better way of life and the media.
In the first of the series – High Line Exchange – Joshua David told how New York’s elevated railway was rescued from destruction, transformed into an interconnected series of paths, gardens and viewing platforms, and now attracting 6 million visitors a year.
This Exchange focuses on bespoke makers and retail. On Tuesday 17 May, at River City Bangkok, Australian Marcus Westbury shares his story of resuscitating the downtown-shopping precinct of Newcastle, and Australian city in New South Wales.
Westbury’s RENEW Newcastle action filled 150 empty shops with local artisans and cafes, designers and craftsman, art galleries and boutiques. Westbury’s current TV Series, BESPOKE, looks at the global trend towards local production and small-retail.
Local heroes Peeradorn Kaewlai and Yossapon Boonsom join the afternoon presentation, providing and insight as to how Bangrak and Klongsan are being turned into a Bangkok’s Creative District.
Not dissimilar to Newcastle, studies by Thammasat University show that 23% of Bangrak properties are sitting vacant. The CREATIVE DISTRICT FOUNDATION is working to change that, bringing together local communities, designers, government bodies, local business and entrepreneurs to provide Bangkokians and tourists the hottest new destination in town.
Marcus Westbury is the founder of the multi award winning creative revitalisation projects Renew Newcastle and Renew Australia projects that have helped launch more than two hundred creative and community projects in Newcastle and reopened more than a hundred vacant properties across Australia.
Marcus has been a writer, media maker and festival director and the founder and manager of multiple arts events, community projects and social enterprises across Australia. He is the author of Creating Cities (Niche Press, 2015) and has been the writer and presenter of the ABC TV series Bespoke and Not Quite Art.
At the beginning of 2016 Marcus began a role as the inaugural CEO of the social enterprise Contemporary Arts Precincts Ltd that is leading the development of the Collingwood Arts Precinct in Melbourne. Marcus advises government and businesses and speaks and writes extensively nationally and internationally about creativity, culture and place.
Dr. Peeradorn is an Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Architecture and Planning, Thammasat University. As an expert in the field of urban development and research, Dr. Peeradorn led the Thammasat research team, which is the first group that introduced Creative City Research in Thailand.
Dr.Peeradorn has been actively working with the government and entrepreneur on projects that increased city and economic competitiveness. Recent projects include Bangkok Skyline, an elevated walkway connecting Ratchaprasong and Pratunam Districts, Development Guidelines for Creative Village in Rural Thailand, and Thailand’s Design and Innovation Promotion Policy and Planning.
In 2012, Dr.Peeradorn was appointed as an advisor of Thailand Creative and Design Center (TCDC) on the relocation and new programming of the New TCDC. Since then, Dr.Peeradorn and Thammasat team have been working with TCDC in exploring the potential of Charoen Krung District as new creative precinct of Bangkok and how the new design center can strategically be a catalyst in urban revitalization. Currently, Dr.Peeradorn is working in collaboration with TCDC, Ajarn Kwan Ponghanyuth, and Shma SoEn on the Co-Create Charoenkrung Project.
Yossapon Boonsom is a Thai landscape architect and the director of Shma Company Limited, a landscape architectural design and research practice with a scope of work ranging from residential to urban design with projects not only in Thailand but also expanding to Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia, China and India.
Shma SoEn (Shma Social and Environment) was established in 2014 as a social enterprise that focuses on public space design by aiming to create innovative spaces through methods such as inclusive participatory design and dialogues amongst stakeholders. This includes urban regeneration projects such as the ‘Re-CREATE Bang Rak Project’ with the goal to revitalise a run down and neglected area in order for it to become the new Creative District of Bangkok.
Yossapon Boonsom is the co-founder of Friends of the River (FOR), a non-profit organization which promotes social awareness and public participation in the creative, sustainable development of the Chaophraya River.
Australian Embassy Bangkok
Royal Orchid Sheraton
River City Bangkok
Thailand Specialty Coffee
Australian Chamber of Commerce (AustCham)
Bangkok River Partners
Creative District Foundation
Thailand Creative and Design Center (TCDC)