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Larry Beasley

Internationally Acclaimed Urban Planner

Thanks to Larry Beasley, the City of Vancouver is known as one of the most livable cities in the world. He is internationally acclaimed as one of the world’s best urban planners.

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Presentations

The Vancouver Model: The World’s Counter-Intuitive City
Vancouver, BC has achieved international acclaim for its livability and compact urban form, making it one model of good planning practice . Larry looks at the techniques and strategies which contributed to effective planning practice in the city.

Sustainable Cities: New Directions in City Building
Larry will speak to the imperative of a new approach to city building that he calls “experiential planning”. This involves understanding and delivering cityscapes that people will truly desire and fall in love with and prefer over unsustainable forms. He will outline what he sees as the basic dimensions of the sustainable and humane city, arguing that the pivotal missing component in city building over the past century has been “placemaking.”

Designing the City for Children

Awards

2012
International Interior Designers Association | Design Leadership Award

2008
Planning Institute of British Columbia | Award of Excellence

2007
MIT | Kevin Lynch Prize

2006
Heart and Stoke Foundation of Canada | Leadership in Healthy Public Policy Award
Congress for the New Urbanism | Award of Excellence

2005
Order of Canada


  • Larry was by far the best keynote speaker -- his talk was inspiring, entertaining, passionate and truly incredible. I also appreciated how much time he gave over to speaking with people, from students to senior city administrators. By far he was one of the best parts of the conference. I will recommend him far and wide.

    - Winnipeg Arts
  • Larry Beasley... has played a leading role in transforming its (the City of Vancouver) downtown core into a vibrant, livable urban community. In doing so, he developed a participative and socially responsible approach to zoning, planning and design, which has become known internationally as the 'Vancouver Model'.

    - Order of Canada Citation
  • Larry was FANTASTIC!! I have received nothing but positive feedback from everyone who participated in events with Larry. He is such an interesting, engaging and knowledgeable speaker. And an absolutely lovely man to boot.

    - Senior Project Manager, Office of the Coordinator General | Chief Minister, Treasury & Economic Development Directorate
  • Larry was a hit! He stole the show! As our keynote he was so down-to-earth, really approachable, nothing was too much or too hard for him. What a star.

    - Senior Events Coordinator at the Green Building Council of Australia

Summary Profile

Larry Beasley is the retired Director of Planning for the City of Vancouver. He is now the “Distinguished Practice Professor of Planning” at the University of British Columbia and the founding principal of Beasley and Associates, an international planning consultancy.

Over thirty years of civic service, Mr. Beasley achieved land use and transportation plans along with careful development management that have dramatically reshaped Vancouver’s inner city.  He also led the revitalization of neighbourhoods, a strong heritage preservation program, the City’s urban design studio and a successful civic fundraising initiative.  For the last thirteen years of his civic service, he was a principal decision maker for Vancouver’s development approvals.  He now teaches and advises the private sector and governments around the world. 

He chairs the ‘National Advisory Committee on Planning, Design and Realty’ of Ottawa’s National Capital Commission; he is the Chief Advisor on Urban Design for the City of Dallas, Texas; he is on the International Economic Development Advisory Board of Rotterdam in The Netherlands; and he is the Special Advisor on City Planning to the government of Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates.

For three years, he was also vice-president of Aquilini Development and he is now Senior Development Advisor to Concord Pacific Developments. Mr. Beasley has studied architecture and has degrees in geography and political science (B.A.) and planning (M.A.).  He has also been awarded two Honorary Doctorate Degrees (Hon. L.L.D.), from Simon Fraser University and Dalhousie University.  

He is a Fellow of the Canadian Institute of Planners, an Honorary Member of the Canadian Society of Landscape Architects and has been recognized as an “Advocate for Architecture” by the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada.  He is also a Fellow of the Dallas Institute and sits on the Board of the Canadian Urban Institute.  In 2007, he received the Kevin Lynch Prize from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the most prestigious award in American planning. Mr. Beasley is a Member of the Order of Canada, the nation’s highest honour for lifetime achievement.