Prof. Dr. Rocky Piro ist der Exekutivdirektor des Colorado Center for Sustainable Urbanism. Er ist Mitglied des Aufsichtsrat der International Environment and Urban Planning Association und ehemaliger Vorsitzender der Regional and Intergovernmental Planning Division (Abteilung für regionale und zwischenstaatliche Planung) der American Planning Association. Er war Exekutivdirektor der Abteilung für Gemeinschaftsplanung und Stadtentwicklung in Denver, Programmmanager der Abteilung für Wachstumsgesetz beim "Puget Sound Regional Council" in Seattle und Manager des zwischenstaatlichen Planungsteams für King County, Washington. Er ist Mitglied des Prüfungssausschusses des "American Institute of Certified Planners", der die Eignungsprüfung für Planer vorbereitet, die eine professionelle Zertifizierung anstreben.
Dr. Piro wurde mit dem Myer Wolfe Award für herausragende Planungsleistungen ausgezeichnet und 2010 in das "College of Fellows" des "American Institute of Certifical Planners" aufgenommen. Er hat auf zahlreichen US-Konferenzen und Symposien, sowie im Ausland vorgetragen: darunter in den Niederlanden, Südafrika, Großbritannien, Deutschland, Australien und Portugal. Er erhielt seinen Ph.D. in Städtebau und Stadtplanung an der University of Washington und seinen Master an der University of Colorado in Denver. Er setzt sich für die Nachhaltigkeit , soziale Gerechtigkeit und Umweltgerechtigkeit, kollaborative Planung und gesund gebaute Umgebung ein. Wir haben uns mit ihm ausgtauscht. Natürlich auf englisch:
Marcus Wittkamp: First of all, I would be interested in your research activities and your motivation to come back to Germany.
Rocky Piro: I have been at the University Colorado Denver for five years now and have kind of reinstituted a centre for sustainable urbanism. During this time, my work has focused primarily on health, and the relationship with the built environment. So, we have been fortunate. We have received some very generous grants both from the Colorado Health Foundation which is one of the largest granting entities in the US, and also from the American Planning Association which is a national organization of city planners. So with that, we did a lot of studies and research in the neighbourhood, we had to be somewhat sensitive because we did not want the neighbours to think they were just a laboratory project of some sort, and then as we were getting findings. We took those and actually applied them in other communities in Colorado, so that we were not just looking at one particular type of neighbourhood, but we were looking at agricultural communities and suburban communities outside of Denver, and also a resort community in the Rocky mountains. And it was fascinating to see how the tools we were developing really gave us some good solutions for each distinct place. So, the work just finished up in June, and we have a whole set of resources that are available electronically, so I will share that with you later in terms of how you can access those.
MW: It is always in the combination with buildings and the technology of buildings, or is that only one part?
RP: I would say yeah that was what was interesting, so we worked with architects, with landscape architects, with urban designers, indeed, but we also worked with sociologists, with people from health professions and so we were able to focus a lot more on buildings, than we have before. We looked at the materials, how the interiors were built and so on, but also, again, we took it to like the family unit and really tried to understand their living situation in their homes, and again one of the issues around health right now is having access to housing. We know here in Germany how expensive housing has become, that is true in many places in the United States, unfortunately Colorado is a very expensive place to live in, so I mean, how do we provide people, even economic security for housing.
MW: Okay and what was your motivation to come back to Germany or to come to do anything here?
RP: Oh well I mean, I have a love affair with Germany, so that is always fantastic. I have to say right now I know Germany has taken some leadership with issues around sustainability.
MW: But I think most of them, most of the points we talked about - is it the first time you have been to NGU or?
RP: No, I do not know if I should say how long ago? I was there. I was in, yeah, so I had, I visited Baden Wurttemberg a couple of times, the first time when I was a teenager, so that was a while ago, we will just say that, and let me think, so with my in laws, so and when was that? That must have been in 1989 or something like that, yeah, I mean there is so much here to see, that I have not even begun to do that. So my first visit was just Stuttgart, the second visit was through the Schwarzwald.
MW: Perfect. Very interesting, thank you very much.
RP: Thank you all, thank you, thank you, no I am so tickled to be here.