Youth and Family Programmes

My City Too campaign making signs
The city in which we live is an incredible place to explore, and yet many young people's boundaries do not extend outside their local neighbourhood. Our programmes awaken young people's creative potential, and show how the city is a place that can inspire and widen horizons.

Each programme also develops team work and communication ability - skills which transfer directly into other parts of their lives.

Family Programmes and Events

Archikids Festival is Open-City's flagship family festival of architecture. A free weekend programme of activities, workshops and competitions aimed to excite and engage families on the value of architecture and their city. The festival takes place in iconic buildings of the City of London Square Mile with architects, artists and designers leading the creative.

Kids Corner at Open House Junior is our programme of junior activities and family events held during the Open House London Sepetmber Weekend. The activities are aimed specifically at encouraging young people to explore the city over the weekend.

Junior Open House Festival was our city’s first ever free and inspiring children’s architecture festival and took place on 23 & 24 June 2012. The weekend event saw over 2,100 children, and their families, exploring the architecture of the City of London’s Square Mile by participating in the festival’s 124 architectural activities, tours and workshops.

Engaging with the Youth of Today

My City Too is a citywide campaign, launched in 2007, to enable young people to voice their ideas, aspirations and solutions for the future of London. Forums, peer-to-peer surveys, a major mayoral debate and local community engagement projects have allowed young people to directly influence change. The culmination of this campaign is our My City Too! website providing a major resource of how to engage with the youth of today. A youth leadership programme has also been developed enabling young people to learn how to carry out workshops in their schools to groups of their peers giving them an introduction to the built environment, design, planning and model-making.

Architecture Academy is a series of creative explorations and workshops held over four days during school holidays to investigate how cities are designed and built. Teams of young people, built environment professionals, architecture students, and Open-City Educators come together to design and model on a super scale, a new urban quarter in the heart of London, testing out life-size structures, model-making techniques and mapping along the way.

Summer Architecture Academy

Watch the interviews with our sponsors and partners recorded live at the Academy:

Interview with Nick Forwood, Lend Lease, Principal Sponsor

Interview with Katharine Heron, University of Westminster, Partner


The changing face of London


Read about all our pioneering programmes designed for people to learn about and advocate for the value of good design through first-hand experience


Regular polls, surveys and research into Londoners' attitudes towards design quality and built environment issues


Find out how Open-City provides independent advice and support to communities


Supported by Arts Council England