Our Vital Waterways: Agents of Transformation
Call for Abstracts
Canals and inland waterways transformed regions and nations, linking seas, opening new territories and creating port cities. Today, many of these old waterways are being redefined as the basis for regeneration, transformation and new vitality for the communities along their banks. Originally built to carry coal, ore, grain and lumber—and often polluted and relegated to industrial backwaters—canals now are heritage and recreation destinations, and the factory buildings along their banks house new businesses and residents.
Yet canals are more than historical curiosities, attractive landscape features and places for holiday makers. Many continue to carry cargo and pleasure vessels. They are crucial infrastructure, delivering water for hydroelectric power, irrigation, manufacturing and drinking. New technologies are being applied to manage water and vessels, and new types of businesses are emerging that take advantage of navigable waterways.