Placemaking Week Europe 2019

12-15 June, La Marina de Valencia

User-based, cross-sectional, innovative


La Marina Living Lab


In La Marina de València we understand the value of co-creation and the importance of including different actors in the design and improvement of our urban environment. This is why we have collaborated with Western Sydney University (WSU) in the process of consolidating La Marina Living Lab – an urban laboratory, which uses systematic practices of participatory co-creation to design and reimagine inclusive and innovative public spaces. Our Lab is a user-based process through which public space is adjusted to the preferences of those who work, study and play in La Marina. Furthermore, it follows a multi-stakeholder approach, counting on the support of research organizations, public administrations, civic associations as well as the private sector.

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La Marina de Valencia’s Strategic Plan 2016-2021 outlines a new vision for the future of the waterfront whereby both tradition and inventiveness drive the transformation of the economy, the urban and cultural environment. With this vision in mind, we set ourselves two main goals: convert La Marina into the city’s engine for economic development through innovation and create a sustainable, inclusive and dynamic public space.

The following Manifesto was meant to enrich and solidify the strategy that is already being implemented in La Marina de Valencia. It was drafted during a four-day workshop which took place in November of 2018 at La Marina and welcomed 40 practitioners and researchers in public space from 16 different countries. During the event, participants reflected on the definition of public space and innovation, and on the interaction between the two, eventually responding to the central question: how can public space foster innovation?

This Manifesto is the result of the sharing of global practices and their re-adaptation on the local dimension of La Marina. It defines (a) the concept of public space, innovation and the relationship between the two, (b) the core values and principles that should guide the creation of public spaces and (c) the key stakeholders that must be involved in the process.

You can read the full text of the Manifesto here (English)
To access the Spanish version, click here (Spanish).

La Marina de València

La Marina de València is the historic harbor of Valencia, converted into 1 million m2 of public space open to innovation and nautical activity.

Situated between the industrial port of Valencia and the beach Las Arenas, La Marina inherited the legacy of several grand-scale projects like the 32nd edition of America’s Cup and the Formula 1 Grand Prix Race. Today, Consorcio València 2007, the institution responsible for managing the space, has embarked on a mission to rethink and reuse the existing infrastructure in order to maximize the civic, commercial, ecological and cultural potential of La Marina.

La Marina de València at a Glance:

  • 1 million square meters
  • 820 berths
  • 4 buildings dedicated to education and innovation
  • 1st fintech incubator and accelerator in Spain
  • 14 restaurants
  • 40 sports clubs, federations and companies
  • 19 multi-purpose buildings/spaces

To find out more about La Marina de València, visit our institutional website.

Living Lab Concept

In La Marina de València we define our Living Lab as an urban laboratory, which uses systematic practices of participatory co-creation to design and reimagine inclusive and innovative public spaces. Our living lab activities extend over the entire 1 million square meters territory of La Marina de València and they impact millions of people every year. Like most living labs, ours is also based upon the quadruple helix (Q4) model, which brings together government, industry, academia and civil society as key stakeholders in the collaborative process. This model breaks down the traditional silos between the four sectors and stimulates the effective flow of knowledge and ideas between the respective parties.  La Marina Living Lab is a vast and ambitious undertaking fueled by the conviction that bringing all relevant stakeholders on board is the only way we can design public spaces that truly work for everybody.



Exploring the role of placemaking in fostering open innovation.