Bordeaux: the mobile Parliament, “a great tool for meeting people”

Climate Libé Tour: Bordeaux

This miniature hemicycle on wheels is a democratic project launched by the town hall of Bordeaux to associate the inhabitants with the major issues of the city.

Transport, industrial renovation, revegetation… In 2023, Libé will explore the theme of ecological transition during a series of unprecedented meetings. Objective: to find solutions as close as possible to the territories. First stage, Bordeaux, February 4 and 5. An event carried out in partnership with the City of Bordeaux, the Department of Gironde, the University of Bordeaux, the Crédit Coopératif, Velux, the Platform for Observation of Urban Projects and Strategies (Popsu).

It is a strange wooden object that looks like a circular agora with platforms placed next to each other, on several levels. The objective is to create a space for dialogue and exchange. The structure is on wheels and moves by truck. It is not reserved for the elect alone; it also welcomes residents, experts, cultural actors… Another way of dialoguing and doing politics, in the noble sense of the term. There are no reserved places.

Tiphaine Ardouin, in charge of permanent democracy and governance by collective intelligence at the town hall of Bordeaux, details the genesis of the project. “The Mobile Parliament was born a year and a half ago on an idea of ​​the local association Etica. The first tour took place in June 2021. Its objective: to create educational tools for social mediation.” The animation is entrusted to people capable of enforcing the rules and of spreading the word.

The Mobile Parliament circulates in eight districts of Bordeaux. This year, we talked about food resilience, urban agriculture, shared gardens, but also real estate heritage, how to reshape the immediate environment in the public space. We shared ideas for revegetating or redeveloping squares, ends of streets, sports spaces. “We also led a reflection so that it is beautiful, pleasant, that it creates social ties. We considered reducing heat islands, sharing our expertise,” lists Tiphaine Ardouin. Who continues: “There are times of meetings. Several elected officials come, we discuss, for example, with groups of young people brought by schools. Everyone must be able to ask questions, discuss, hear what the inhabitants have to say. The fact that we are in a semi-circle, all mixed together, provides conditions for peaceful exchange and sharing. This does not prevent occasional individual meetings with sometimes rough moments. Adversarial debate is part of democracy. “This is not a space where everyone is in systematic agreement. When it comes to the closing of one-way streets, people can be justifiably angry. We explained to them that we had to do this to make the city more livable. The limit today is that it’s new!

Among the ambitions of its initiators, that the mobile Parliament be a tool spontaneously used by the inhabitants, “at the request of a school, an association”. “It’s a great tool for meeting people, concludes Tiphaine Ardouin. All the more important that there is a demand to go faster and further, that things happen differently, so that the ecological transition is made with the inhabitants.

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Bordeaux: the mobile Parliament, “a great tool for meeting people”


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