NEWS RELEASE - 31 Jul 2023

Sobreiro Social Neighbourhood receives the first Participatory Session with residents

Sobreiro Social Neighbourhood hosted the first Participatory Session of Eyes Hearts Hands to promote resident involvement in the renovation process, fostering inclusivity and community-driven urban development.

The Sobreiro Social Neighbourhood was recently the stage of the first Participatory Session of Lighthouse Four (LH4) of our project Eyes Hearts Hands. The session was co-organized by the project’s Portuguese Cluster, composed by Maia Municipality, Espaço Municipal (EM), AdEPorto – Porto Energy Agency, Centre for New Energy Technologies (EDP NEW) and Sociedade Portuguesa de Inovação (SPI).

The opening of the session, which was held on the 13th of July, was attended by the Councillor for Environment and Quality of Life of the Municipality of Maia, Marta Peneda, who highlighted the importance of the project for the Municipality and noted, with satisfaction, the high degree of participation in this first session (a total of 27 households). The session aimed at promoting greater involvement and participation of residents in the renovation process of Blocks 41 to 47. The intervention will begin with Blocks 41 and 42 later this year, under the Portuguese Resilience and Recovery Plan (PRR).

Residents taking part in the renovation process

Making use of a whiteboard with pre-defined questions, residents were invited to participate in a reflection exercise around the strengths and main challenges related to the ongoing renovation process and the neighbourhood as a whole, aiming at creating a more inclusive urban space open to the entire community, within the scope of the NEB approach. Additionally, residents were also invited to choose, via an interactive voting process, the preferred types and combinations of colours for their kitchens and bathrooms, which will also be renovated in the coming months.

This first session served equally as the starting point of the participatory process that will be carried out during the Eyes Hearts Hands project timeline and as a way to connect the residents and the entities that will mediate the foreseen intervention in the scope of the project, while also promoting dialogue among different groups and cultures within the neighbourhood.

Within the Eyes Hearts Hands approach, Sobreiro is one of the seven districts where co-creation and engagement practices will be tested and implemented, focused on digital, smart energy efficient solutions, circular and modular renovation toolkits, eco-design and people-centred business models.

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