Marcel Smets

Senior Partner 

Marcel Smets, PhD Civil Eng/Arch, Prof. Em., Senior Advisor (B), is a senior advisor and partner with ORG Urbanism since August 2015. Marcel has joined as the result of a merger between his own consulting agency and ORG’s urbanism activities. He is professor emeritus of Urbanism at the University of Leuven, and served as State Architect for Flanders between 2005 and 2010. Smets is a founding member of ILAUD (1976), and a visiting faculty member at University of Thessaloniki (1985) and Harvard Graduate School of Design (2002-04). He has been active in history and theory, with books on Huib Hoste, Charles Buls, the Belgian garden city movement, and the reconstruction of Belgium after World War I. He served as a critic for Archis, Topos, Lotus, Casabella and has been juror for competitions across Europe. From 1989 to 2002 Smets was director of the urban design office ‘Projectteam Stadsontwerp’. He acted as chief urban designer of projects in Leuven, Antwerp, Hoeilaart, Rouen, Genoa and Conegliano, with some of ORG current leadership in then junior roles. The award-winning transformation of the Leuven station area has been widely published. In recent years, he curated the transformation of the Ile de Nantes in three consecutive studies, each on a different scale. Through numerous research projects, published articles, and his own urban design practice, Smets has explored both the theoretical and practical relations between urbanism, mobility and landscape.