Today I joined other elected reps and policymakers in Visual Carlow Arts Centre to listen to and see the outputs of participatory research carried out by students of Carlow Educate Together on their town.
Students brought back really innovative ideas on urban mobility, biodiversity, town centre living, spaces for young people, and climate resilience.
The project is a collaboration with the School of Architecture in Technical University of Dublin and Carlow County Council Community Information and the report will go on to inform planning policy in the local authority.
It's really important that engagement with young people is not tokenistic, is participative, and that their views are considered.
Planners and policymakers (councillors) need to be brave in how they shape resilient a future for the town but this work is an important step forward.