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We are UBLA

We design liveable spaces and better communication for cities

UBLA is the agile agency that helps cities increase citizens’ satisfaction with their environment. Creators of the world’s first popular urban architecture magazine, we have more than a decade’s experience with urban design and communications that work.
We work globally, but we are based in Copenhagen, Denmark which has become something of a model city in the quest to create ‘liveability’ in an increasingly urbanised world. And for good reason.

We do 2 things


We help enhance the quality of life in a city through architectural and spatial design


We help engage people in their city through producing inviting urban communications



A happier, more productive and more competitive city

Urban design and communications

Let us help engage your city

Our services
house man 400 px

A two-sided task

Cities frame our lives and determine what we see, what we can do and how we move around. In order for a city to thrive, its citizens need to both truly appreciate, and take pride in, their frame.

The task is two-sided: The city must supply quality urban spaces that are both functional and liveable — and at the same time communicate the city and its ongoing transformation in a manner that involves the citizens.

UBLA “thinks the city” from a user perspective, helps shift cityscapes from blocks of bricks to outdoor homes — and creates a city narrative, resulting in what we call The Engaged City.

Design beliefs

When we help design urban spaces, we work from a set of premises

Humanized cities

Humanized cities

The city is the physical frame within which people live their lives. In the engaged city the urban space is designed not only for function but also for making it pleasurable for human beings to perform that function, whatever it may be.



Dividing cities in residential, commercial and cultural zones creates uninspiring homogeneity and increased need for transport. The engaged city is the mixed-use city.

Car control

Car control

Cars are a very convenient way of moving around, but in densely populated environments their presence has serious implications for everybody not in cars. In the engaged city, cars exist on people's terms — and not the other way around.



The bicycle is a fantastic instrument. Effective city transportation with no air polution, no sound polution and very little risk to pedestrians. The bicycle must be prioritized in the engaged city of the 21st century.



The presence of greenery has profound effects on city dwellers — increasing both happiness and perceived safety. The engaged city incorporates greenery, and not just in separate park areas.

Variety + surprise

Variety + surprise

Grids and uniformity do not go well with human nature. In the engaged city, rational infrastructure is combined with variety in scale, shapes and sizes.

Love the local

Love the local

Each city should embrace its local characteristics — be it a particular building material or a way of planting trees. The engaged city has a clear identity.

365 days cities

365 days cities

The engaged city is a great place to live both summer and winter. Urban design should facilitate this through finding clever ways of weaving together the outdoors and the indoors, coolness and warmth.

Our design approach


Communication beliefs

When we help communicate, we work from four basic ideas



Once humans have visualised a possible future, their engagement in bettering things increases immensely — benefitting all.

Invite and engage

Invite and engage

City dwellers need to feel a sense of empowerment to truly engage with the city. If invited to contribute, in however small ways, people become part of a shared dream.

Narrative and identity

Narrative and identity

Creating a city narrative allows inhabitants to become part of something bigger — an ongoing project to improve the frames of our lives, for our own sake and for our children's sake.

Move the inside out

Move the inside out

Most of us care about our homes, our physical frame. Simply extending this interest into the space around our homes, creates new levels of engagement.

Our communication approach

From CityFormation

UBLA's blog — Spanning a world of cities

Jardin Turia Valencia

Spread out greenery means proximity to greenery

Being close to greenery is sometimes better than having lots of it

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