Meeting at Casa Firjan presents UIA2020RIO to Brazil and the world

Leaders, entrepreneurs and Architecture professionals
gathered at Casa Firjan for a UIA2020RIO presentation
/ Renata Mello

Twenty thousand architects from all over the planet will gather in Rio de Janeiro in 2020 for three big events, 12 seminars, more than 50 art exhibitions and cultural initiatives, and competitions for students and young professionals. All of this will happen around the 27th World Congress of Architects, https://www.uia2020rio.archi/, which will mobilize even some of the greatest parties in the world, such as the New Year’s Eve bash in Copacabana and Rio’s Carnival.

The program of UIA2020RIO, which is organized by the International Union of Architects (UIA) and the Institute of Architects of Brazil (IAB), was launched last Tuesday (August 27) in a ceremony at Casa Firjan. The Congress will happen next year, from the 19th to the 23rd of July, and its goal is to discuss the future of the cities for a fairer and more sustainable society. Because of the event, Rio de Janeiro will become, in the 1st of January, the World Capital of Architecture, a title given for the first time by UNESCO and UIA.

Sérgio Magalhães, president of the Executive Committee of UIA2020RIO
/ Renata Mello

- Architecture is the house and the city, is the elaborate work of art and the simple construction. The Congress is for architects, but it is also for the society, because everybody is responsible for the built space. It will be in Rio, but it is for Brazil, because we need to think about what we want for the country’s metropolis. The Congress is for the world, so we can reflect upon ways to overcome inequalities and segregation – said the architect Sérgio Magalhães, president of the Executive Committee of UIA2020RIO.

The event is supported by important organizations form the civil society, such as the Brazilian Council of Architecture and Urbanism (CAU-BR), the Council of Architecture and Urbanism in Rio de Janeiro (CAU-RJ), the National Federation of Architects and Urbanists of Brazil (FNA), Grupo Globo and the Industry Federation of the State of Rio de Janeiro (FIRJAN).

The Governor of the State of Rio, Wilson Witzel, was at the event / Renata Mello

The governor of the Rio de Janeiro State, Wilson Witzel, was at the program launch and took the opportunity to announce the creation of a foundation, Rio Metropolitano, congregating the state government and local mayors to confront urban disorder and to implement policies of mobility and sanitation, among other areas. Representing the mayor of Rio Marcelo Crivella, the Municipal Secretary of Turism, Paulo Jobim, emphasized the positive impact of the event for the city and the important architectonic legacy of Rio.

The president of FIRJAN, Eduardo Eugênio Gouvêa Vieira, reminded the public that, to conquer the right to host the World Congress of Architects, Rio defeated two important contenders, Paris and Melbourne:

- It will be a huge, if not the greatest, opportunity for Brazilian architects to show off their great potential to the society. And attention to this event that will consequently mean the success of our city, of our state – he said.

The president of CAU-BR, Luciano Guimarães, emphasized the commitment of the professionals to guarantee the success of the events in 2020:

- The Brazilian Council of Architecture and Urbanism is supporting the initiative since Rio became a candidate to be the host city. The 170 thousand professionals who are registered in the Council are ready to contribute for the prosperity of the program that is being launched, for the realization of the World Forum of Cities and for the celebration of Rio as the first World Capital of Architecture.

João Pedro Backheuser, Commissary General of UIA2020RIO, talked
about details of the program / Renata Mello

The program starts on the first second of 2020, in the traditional New Year’s Eve’s fireworks at Copacabana Beach. A little bit after, the samba parades and the street parties will bring the theme of architecture and the discussion about cities to the Carnival, the most popular festival in Rio. The samba group Unidos da Tijuca, for example, will promote a parade in the Sambadrome with the theme “Architecture and Urbanism: Where the dreams live”, an initiative that counted with the support of CAU-RJ.

- UIA2020RIO is not only a talk from architect to architect, we want it to reach the whole society. It is necessary that everybody understands that the production of the city is a part of each one of us – explained the architect João Pedro Backheuser, Commissary General of UIA2020RIO.

Casa Firjan will host some of UIA2020RIO's events / Renata Mello


Hundreds of architects, urbanists and other interested groups from the civil society have already guaranteed their presences at the event, which will turn Rio into the epicentre of the debate about the future of the cities around the world.

If you have not registered yet, go to the official website and enjoy the discount.

The World Congress of Architects happens every three years and the one in Rio marks the return of the event to Latin American after 42 years. In 1963, Havana was the host city; in 1969, it was Buenos Aires and, in 1978, Mexico City. To host the event in 2020, Rio de Janeiro has competed against Paris and Melbourne.

With the theme “All the worlds. Just one world. Architecture 21” is promoted by the International Union of Architects (UIA) and is organized by the Institute of Architects of Brazil (IAB). It will reunite specialists and enthusiasts of fairer and more dynamic cities to talk about solutions between the 19th and the 23rd of July 2020. Before that, on July 17 and 18, Rio will also host the World Forum of Cities UNESCO-UIA, with mayors of previous host cities and political, entrepreneurial, cultural and social leaderships.


Rio de Janeiro is the first city to win the title of World Capital of Architecture by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the International Union of Architects (UIA). Throughout 2020, the city will host a series of events, including the 27th World Congress of Architects, the World Forum of Cities, expositions and public contests. Apart from showing to the world the architectural importance of Rio, the title is also an opportunity for reflection about the future, to plan what is wanted for cities all over the world.



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