30/11/2017 - Smarter Together - political commitment in the energy transition process
30/11/2017 - How Cities Are Preparing for Autonomous Vehicles
30/11/2017 - European Metropolitan Authorities (EMA) conference consolidates leadership role
29/11/2017 - Savvy city planners will be tomorrow's climate heroes
29/11/2017 - Vehicles are getting smarter, what about roads?
29/11/2017 - Connecting with innovative solution-finders from the smart urbanization sector
28/11/2017 - How to Engage Children in City Building
28/11/2017 - Making homes safer to build resilient cities
28/11/2017 - Faster Adoption Of Self-Driving Cars Would Save Lives
27/11/2017 - New "Clean Mobility and Energy for Cities" project kicked-off
27/11/2017 - Urbanization Is Now One of the Most Dominant Forces of Evolution
27/11/2017 - Raze, rebuild, repeat: why Japan knocks down its houses after 30 years
26/11/2017 - Local leaders adopt the Mechelen Declaration on Cities and Migration
26/11/2017 - How Gothenburg learned to love congestion pricing
26/11/2017 - Zurich's Public Housing Problem: The Tenants Are Too Rich
25/11/2017 - Report Highlights Benefits and Best Practices of Safe City Innovation
25/11/2017 - Has Copenhagen hit peak bike?
25/11/2017 - #Cities4Migration: The High-Level Conference in Beirut addresses migration as an urban phenomenon
24/11/2017 - Five keys to a healthy and liveable city
24/11/2017 - Circular cities: outcomes from the EUROCITIES conference 2017
24/11/2017 - ECOMM2018 call for presentations open - deadline 10 December
23/11/2017- How inclusive is my city?
23/11/2017- Migration and Cities: We Need To Do Better
23/11/2017- Global Mayors Show the World What Works
22/11/2017 - New tool for urban mobility research
22/11/2017 - ETSI creates City Digital Profile group on smart cities
22/11/2017 - Successful REFORM conference on SUMPs and multi-level governance
21/11/2017 - The Smart21 Communities of 2018
21/11/2017 - Urban Parks and the 10-Minute Challenge
21/11/2017 - The latest on CITYFOOD
20/11/2017 - Should U.S. Cities Ban Winter Evictions?
20/11/2017 - Researchers Calculate the Healthiest City Density
20/11/2017 - These are the world's most fragile cities
19/11/2017 - Governing city infrastructure: Who drives the urban project cycle?
19/11/2017 - Singapore: no more cars allowed on the road, government says
19/11/2017 - Spatial Planning Milestones
18/11/2017 - The metropolitan landscape in question
18/11/2017 - Cities in Southeast Asia are acting on the SDGs ahead of their national governments
18/11/2017 - Urban mobility planning and policy - best practice from EU for third countries
17/11/2017 - CIVITAS study visit shows cities how to get children cycling and walking
17/11/2017 - Are Trains Better Than Bus Rapid Transit Systems? A Look at the Evidence
17/11/2017 - Traffic management as a Service – a solution for small and medium-sized cities
16/11/2017 - Saudi Arabia's $500 Billion Fantasy of a Utopian Megacity
16/11/2017 - The City is not stuck - Jean-Yves Chapuis book
16/11/2017 - Recognising refugee qualifications
15/11/2017 - The Making Cities Work call has opened!
15/11/2017 - TransMilenio Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system
15/11/2017 - How to design streets for humans and self-driving cars
14/11/2017 - 4 tips for effective implementation of Smart City solutions
14/11/2017 - For Procurement Reform, Cities See Value in Learning What's Worked Elsewhere
14/11/2017 - Is your city as smart as its residents?
13/11/2017 - National urban policies are about seeing cities as core to the collective good
13/11/2017 - Culture and third places in cities: Highlights from the Culture Forum in Ghent
13/11/2017 - These winning photos capture the future of sustainable cities
12/11/2017 - Overcoming administrative barriers to SUMP development
12/11/2017 - SMURBS: SMart URBan Solutions for air quality, disasters and city growth
12/11/2017 - Washington DC is a blueprint for better cities.
11/11/2017 - Barcelona hosts global meeting on housing as a human right
11/11/2017 - New Legislation Adopted in Finland to Enable MaaS
11/11/2017 - Cities Are One Big Evolutionary Experiment
10/11/2017 - How cities can fight climate change most effectively
10/11/2017 - Energy efficiency in Stockholm gets €56m boost
10/11/2017 - On the morality of demolishing communities against their will
9/11/2017 - Oslo’s Ambitious Goals for the Urban Environment
9/11/2017 - Seven Conditions for creating a Smart City through Partnerships
9/11/2017 - Smart Cities Took Center Stage At The 24th ITS World Congress
8/11/2017 - Tesla Superchargers Soon Powering City Centers
8/11/2017 - Global Urban Competitiveness Report 2017-2018 launched
8/11/2017 - “Better Planning, Better Cities” – Cities to share smart solutions to urban sustainability
7/11/2017 - Taking back the streets of Shanghai
7/11/2017 - The three-degree world: the cities that will be drowned by global warming
7/11/2017 - The Dos And Don’ts Of Building A Smart City
6/11/2017 - Who will be the 1st winner of the PLATFORMAwards?
6/11/2017 - Why do people want to live in the city?
6/11/2017 - Can Dar es Salaam become the next global model on transit-oriented development?
5/11/2017 - Visit the new SUNRISE project website!
5/11/2017 - Revitalize the City, Invigorate the Region
5/11/2017 - Tashkent City: is 'progress' worth the price being paid in Uzbekistan?
4/11/2017 - Community Energy - what's new from the EU?
4/11/2017 - 100% RE in cities—Final Report from Forum 2017
4/11/2017 - Facing tomorrow's urban challenges: welcome to MUNI WORLD 2018
3/11/2017 - How smart cities can protect against IoT security threats
3/11/2017 - Can we make our cities work?
3/11/2017 - Researchers Calculate the Healthiest City Density
2/11/2017 - New IRIS Smart Cities project
2/11/2017 - Transforming urban waterfronts
2/11/2017 - Do Brands Matter in Public Transit?
1/11/2017 - Experts on sustainable development and housing wanted
1/11/2017 - These are the safest cities around the world
1/11/2017 - Cities Are Thinking and Acting Globally, Says Paris Mayor
Smarter Together - political commitment in the energy transition process
On the 25th and 26th October, Energy Cities co-organized a thematic workshop with Santiago de Compostela Municipality.
This event took place in this Galician town within the frame of Smarter Together project.
This workshop brought all participating cities in the project to the capital of Galicia. In these intensive two days, Santiago showed all the impressive political commitment and engagement in the transition process, and having a smart city vision based on governance.
How Cities Are Preparing for Autonomous Vehicles
Dubai has big plans for autonomous vehicles — some of the most ambitious globally, in fact — with a strategy that could slash the city-state’s transportation costs by 44 percent and reduce accidents by 12 percent. But while they may not meet Dubai’s scope, the U.S. cities of Palo Alto and Portland are on similar paths, emphasizing pilot zone identification and building up their city fleets in their pursuit of self-driving cars.
European Metropolitan Authorities (EMA) conference consolidates leadership role
On 20 October, Warsaw hosted the third edition of the European Metropolitan Authorities (EMA) conference, an initiative led by the Barcelona Metropolitan Area. Topics such as metropolitan solidarity and the role of metropolitan areas in EU cohesion policy post-2020 were discussed, and good practices for collaboration between metropolitan areas were shared.
The Metropolis Secretary General, Octavi de la Varga, moderated the session called “Metropolitan Solidarity: spreading income and inducing development”, with the participation, from our membership, of the Barcelona Metropolitan Area and the Metropolis of Lyon, and also of Nice, the Silesian Metropolitan Area and Tirana.
Savvy city planners will be tomorrow's climate heroes
Cities generate two-thirds of global energy demand and greenhouse-gas emissions, prompting much discussion on the needed role of local authorities in combating climate change. Global networks of city leaders have reaffirmed their commitment to doing their share to achieve global climate targets, and the number of such mayors is ever increasing. As exciting as it is to see such momentum from cities, we should take this with some skepticism.
In countries where governance is top-down and land use is within state or national jurisdiction, mayors often are merely glorified urban managers (PDF) in charge of ensuring proper public service delivery. Therefore, handbooks and other guidance offering "solutions" for cities to combat climate change through mayoral action typically limit themselves to efficiency gains in service delivery and energy use.
Vehicles are getting smarter, what about roads?
As cars become more connected, what about our roads? An expert in autonomous vehicles discusses how our roadways and infrastructure may need to change to prepare for the age of autonomous vehicles. When people discuss the future of autonomous vehicles, they sometimes speak as if they were in a vacuum. But the enabling of autonomous vehicles depends on a connected suite of technologies and innovations, many of which are still in development. One area that tends to be overlooked in many of these discussions are the roads themselves.
Connecting with innovative solution-finders from the smart urbanization sector
Under the theme, Empower Cities, Empower people, the 2017 edition of Smart City Expo World Congress (#SCEWC17) took place this month in Barcelona. UN-Habitat signed an agreement with the event organizers through which the programme will become a strategic partner in this and future editions of the global event.
For UN-Habitat, this partnership is an opportunity to promote urbanization as a tool for development in the framework of the New Urban Agenda and the Agenda 2030. The 2017 edition of the Congress, held from 14th – 16th November, attracted over 18,000 participants with 700 cities representatives and 420 international experts.
How to Engage Children in City Building
Children need freedom and opportunities to play and use their imagination. For this reason, they thrive in cities and walkable communities - places where they are not shuttled around in cars and isolated in oversized suburban homes surrounded by highways and big box stores. But, it is rare to come across examples of cities where the youngest citizens are actively engaged in urban planning and design.
8-80 Cities, an organization focused on building inclusive communities, conducted a research project to look for successful examples in their recently published Building Better Cities with Young Children and Families. The organization collected 21 case studies from 16 different countries over the last 50 years in order to compile strategies and principles for engaging families and caregivers with young children.
Making homes safer to build resilient cities
Children are often told that home is where to run inside when thunders hit or when the rain comes, and that home is a safe place. However, for billions of people in the world, it is not.
By 2030, it is estimated that 3 billion people will be at risk of losing a loved one or their homes—usually their most important assets—to natural disasters. In fact, the population living on flood plains or cyclone-prone coastlines is growing twice as faster as the population in safe homes in safer areas.
Faster Adoption Of Self-Driving Cars Would Save Lives
The Rand Corporation, a nonprofit institution with a history of analyzing futuristic technologies, released a report Tuesday outlining the risk of waiting to allow autonomous vehicles until they’re far superior to human drivers.
The report estimated that hundreds of thousands of lives could be lost to road fatalities over the next three decades if the U.S. is slow to embrace the emerging technology. The sooner these vehicles are commonplace, the faster they will master driving and improve road safety, the study suggested.
New "Clean Mobility and Energy for Cities" project kicked-off
The 3-year “Clean Mobility and Energy for Cities” project will investigate whether it is possible to directly combine the generation of renewable energy with the loading of electric vehicles, through storage and an energy management system.
Urbanization Is Now One of the Most Dominant Forces of Evolution
When humans settled into larger villages and towns some 12,000 years ago along with the advance of agriculture, wildlife took advantage. Those species “preadapted” to survive in early cities, including mice and rats, grabbed onto the coattails of modern civilization and haven’t looked back since. Now they pretty much depend on the underbelly of human society for survival. A new study published in the journal Science—the first to take a broad look at the way urbanization is affecting evolution—posits that countless other species are now faced with the evolutionary conundrum how to thrive in the shadow of humanity’s ever-expanding footprint.
Raze, rebuild, repeat: why Japan knocks down its houses after 30 years
Unlike in other countries, Japanese homes become valueless over time – but as the population shrinks, can its cities finally learn to slow down and refurb?
In the suburban neighbourhood of Midorigaoka, about an hour by train outside Kobe, Japan, all the houses were built by the same company in the same factory. Steel frames fitted out with panel walls and ceilings, these homes were clustered by the hundreds into what was once a brand new commuter town. But they weren’t built to last.
Local leaders adopt the Mechelen Declaration on Cities and Migration
“Although the movement of populations into towns and cities poses a variety of challenges, it can also bring significant social, economic and cultural contributions to urban development”. This quote summarises the spirit of the Mechelen Declaration on Cities and Migration, which was adopted on 17 November in Mechelen. The mayor of Samos, Michalis Angelopoulos, was representing CEMR during its adoption.
How Gothenburg learned to love congestion pricing
A small but increasing number of cities have implemented congestion schemes and charges, including London, Milan, Singapore and Stockholm. What can we learn from Sweden’s second-largest city?
Zurich's Public Housing Problem: The Tenants Are Too Rich
Switzerland’s biggest city clamps down on 132 millionaires currently living in public projects.
Anyone who thinks public housing is only for the truly desperate should visit Zurich. In Switzerland’s largest city, housing specifically built to rent out at cost has become so popular with people of all classes that it’s actually… well, too popular.
Report Highlights Benefits and Best Practices of Safe City Innovation
By 2020, 365 million Americans will live in cities, and with that increase in urbanization comes concerns over public safety. In a new report, the Brookings Institution examines how digital technology, mobile networks, and integrated solutions help officials in 17 global cities, including two U.S. cities, manage public safety and law enforcement.
“As more people move, cities face a critical need to ensure public safety,” said the report’s co-author Darrell West, vice president and director of Governance Studies at the Brookings Institution. “Large urban areas bring together people from varying backgrounds, languages, and cultures. With these differences, there inevitably are misunderstandings, conflicts, crime, violence, and terrorism.”
Has Copenhagen hit peak bike?
The share of trips taken by bike in Denmark’s capital has fallen. With ever more cars on the road and a new metro line about to open, can Copenhagen reach its target to have half of all journeys made by bike?
#Cities4Migration: The High-Level Conference in Beirut addresses migration as an urban phenomenon
On 7 and 8 November 2017 the closing days of the Mediterranean City to City Migration project (MC2CM) project were held at the Beit Beirut Museum, which is also known as the “yellow house”, a place which is both an architectural landmark and a historical symbol of the life of the inhabitants of Beirut. Marked by its history, this building, which is in the middle of the boundary that existed between East and West Beirut during the Lebanon War, has now been turned into a genuine public space for exchange and culture.
Five keys to a healthy and liveable city
The world’s cities today are facing multiple challenges, from exposure to climate change to concerns about social segregation to deepening health crises.
What’s more, these issues are profoundly interrelated. Urban planning policies that have prioritized cars over walking or bicycling simultaneously worsen air pollution, lengthen commutes and contribute to incidence of “urban diabetes”, which the World Health Organisation has called “a new urban epidemic”.
Circular cities: outcomes from the EUROCITIES conference 2017
The EUROCITIES Conference 2017 showcased many amazing examples of the circular economy in action in our cities, and demonstrated the energy and commitment to move forwards. We have been doing our best in the past month to share these efforts widely.
Our circular economy month, a social media led campaign in the lead up to the conference, highlighted examples of circular transition taking place in our cities though case studies, interviews, videos and graphics. Over the course of the month the #EUROCITIES2017 reached over two million accounts on Twitter, and, in the week of the conference itself, over 200 different accounts were posting about #EUROCITIES2017 generating over 1.3k mentions and 900 engagements.
ECOMM2018 call for presentations open - deadline 10 December
The Municipality of Uppsala, the Uppsala County Council and Uppsala University together with EPOMM proudly announce the opening of the Call for Presentations for the 22nd European Conference on Mobility Management – ECOMM 2018, which will take place in Uppsala, Sweden on the 30th of May to 1st June 2018.
How inclusive is my city?
Take the pulse of your city with MyCOM, the My City of Migration Diagnostic. MyCOM is a modular tool designed to help you assess the quality of inclusion in your city: at work, at school, on election day, in health and as a new arrival. Complete the MYCOM Diagnostic to build a profile of your city’s strengths and weaknesses across 10 dimensions of inclusion. How does your city measure up?
Migration and Cities: We Need To Do Better
Today, there are more than one billion migrants in the world, representing a seventh of the world’s population. This level of human mobility is unprecedented and continues to rise at a rapid rate.
This one billion is comprised of an estimated 244 million international migrants and 763 million internal migrants – over three times the number. Yet it is international migration that seems to monopolize the attention both of the media and of politicians.
Global Mayors Show the World What Works
The Refuge Coffee Company in Clarkston, Georgia, sits by the railway line that runs through the heart of this apparently typical southern American small town, some 20 miles east of Atlanta.
But Refuge, which I was fortunate to visit earlier this year, is not your typical American coffee shop. Its Facebook page, for instance, celebrates the fact that one staff member, Tha, has just received her U.S. citizenship; its annual report notes that last year it hired 10 trainee staff members from Syria, Burma, Ethiopia, the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Morocco.
New tool for urban mobility research
Discover TRIMIS, a new and useful tool for urban mobility research. With TRIMIS, you have access to all EU and national transport research & innovation projects, including their results, which you can use in many ways. TRIMIS was launched by the European Commission.
ETSI creates City Digital Profile group on smart cities
This new Industry Specification Group “City Digital Profile” (ISG CDP) will help accelerate the delivery of integrated citizen services and provide a technology road map for city leaders who will benefit from standardized solutions from their suppliers.
This news is an extract from ETSI.org
The City Digital Profile ISG will enable cities to procure smart solutions with confidence that those solutions will be extendable, configurable and interoperable with similar services from other cities and providers.
Successful REFORM conference on SUMPs and multi-level governance
On Thursday 26 October 2017, representatives of cities, regions, national governments and European institutions came together in Brussels to exchange on SUMPs.
The conference "SUMP in Europe: best practices and multi-level governance - The European Reality of SUMP" was organised by the REFORM project in cooperation with the PUM (Partnership on Urban Mobility) and the EU platform on SUMPs and hosted by Polis.
The Conference aimed at presenting the actions of the different public authorities, at their levels, for the development and the promotion of Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans in European cities and regions.
The Smart21 Communities of 2018
The Intelligent Community Forum named the world’s Smart21 Communities of 2018. Selection of this group of cities and counties begins the eight-month process through which ICF will name of them as its 2018 Intelligent Community of the Year. More than semi-finalists for an international award, the Smart21 represent the best models of economic, social and cultural development in the digital age, in the judgment of ICF and its team of independent analysts.
Urban Parks and the 10-Minute Challenge
Everyone should have ready access to a high-quality park, but it's especially important for low-income neighborhoods.
Once the site of an open-air drug market, Boeddeker Park in San Francisco's struggling Tenderloin District was emblematic of urban decay. Its rusted, dilapidated playground was named the city's worst. Today, Boeddeker sports a lush lawn, new play equipment, a full-size basketball court and a clubhouse that hosts programs for neighborhood kids.
The latest on CITYFOOD
Since operationalizing the ICLEI-RUAF CITYFOOD Network in May 2017, 15 local and regional governments have formally committed to the network and several are following suit.
CITYFOOD is working step-by-step with ICLEI regional and country offices and local RUAF partners, facilitating outreach and on-ground work in all regions. Activities include, but are not limited to, offering policy advice to cities implementing food systems assessments, design of territorial food strategies, training workshops for cities and the design of monitoring frameworks.
Should U.S. Cities Ban Winter Evictions?
France’s “trêve hivernale” policy prevents evictions from November 1 until March 31. The U.S. has only a patchwork of cold-weather renter protections.
In France, the first day of November triggers a five-month respite for renters at risk for eviction. Called “trêve hivernale” (“winter break”), the measure bans evictions until March 31, and is intended to ensure families aren’t put out on cold streets. During this time, gas and electricity cannot be cut off. And this year, under France’s Equality and Citizenship Act, the policy extends beyond traditional homes (“living quarters”) and applies to all “inhabited places,” granting amnesty to those who live in makeshift shelters, too.
Researchers Calculate the Healthiest City Density
Despite the image of clean air, green backyards and fresh food often associated with leaving a dense urban core for more spread-out surroundings, new research finds that city dwellers are actually healthier — and happier — than their suburban counterparts.
The study, from Oxford University and the University of Honk Kong, looked at the impact of density on more than 400,000 residents in 22 British cities, including London, Glasgow and Cardiff. Researchers nailed down the optimum density from a health perspective: more than 32 homes per hectare.
These are the world's most fragile cities
Much of the world is making great leaps in technology, security, and public health. But some cities are getting left behind.
In these distressed urban areas, the unemployment rate is high, equality is low, healthcare and safety are poor, and people fear for their life on a daily basis, wondering whether the government will ever step in to help.
Robert Muggah, a global security expert and research director at the think tank Igarapé Institute, has found 11 such factors that collectively make a city vulnerable to societal or economic collapse. Muggah calls this "fragility."
Governing city infrastructure: Who drives the urban project cycle?
Cities are on the rise at a scale and speed unprecedented in human history. They have become the undisputed engines of national economies and the centers of global trade and investment.
They sit on the front lines of disruptive forces like population migration, demographic transformation, economic restructuring, income inequality, and climate change. And with many national and state governments mired in gridlock, cities are increasingly the vanguard of problem-solving and policy innovation.
Singapore: no more cars allowed on the road, government says
The number of buses and goods vehicles will be allowed to continue growing but the growth cap for private cars will be cut to zero in 2018
Singapore, one of the most expensive places in the world to buy a vehicle, has announced it will freeze the number of private cars on its roads from next year but vowed to expand public transport.
The growth cap for all passenger cars and motorcycles will be cut from 0.25% a year to zero with effect from February, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) said.
Spatial Planning Milestones
Spatial Planning Milestones is a rank of events, books, congresses, plans, declarations, principles and concepts that contributed to Spatial Planning and to the quality of life in Europe.
The used Spatial Planning concept is a broad one. It includes Planning Theory, Planning Practice, Greater Plans, Landscape, Heritage, Transports, Infrastructures, Housing, Environment and Governance.
The site includes the possibility of making suggestions.
It is a initiative of João Teixeira, Past President of ECTP-CEU, and of Nuno Ventura Bento.
Spatial Planning Milestones from different countries can be added.
Please share your country Milestones !
The metropolitan landscape in question
INTA's governing board led a debate, during its meeting on September 22 in Bordeaux, on the metropolitan landscape. Supported by several french examples, it focused on the role of the landscape, especially in the shaping of new towns, concept that is coming back worldwide.
Cities in Southeast Asia are acting on the SDGs ahead of their national governments
In Southeast Asia, national governments are busy incorporating the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into national development policies. But while central mandates for implementing the goals are expected to eventually “trickle down” to cities, this process is being slowed by the comprehensive nature of the goals, requiring significant coordination and consultation across government. Furthermore, central guidance may not necessarily be practical: Many city officials have said that they are often confused by conflicting or overlapping policies from multiple ministries, and such frustrations are expected to persist in implementing the SDGs.
Urban mobility planning and policy - best practice from EU for third countries
In recent years, there has been a growing interest from third countries to learn from European experience in the area of sustainable urban mobility.
In response to this, the European Commission's Directorate-General for Mobility and Transport – with the support of an external consultant – has just published two booklets in English with translations into Mandarin, French, Portuguese and Spanish.
CIVITAS study visit shows cities how to get children cycling and walking
As part of the latest CIVITAS study visit, six cities from six countries visited Reggio Emilia, Italy, for two days to learn about its methods for fostering cycling amongst children - without putting them at risk.
Children walk and cycle to school in timetabled groups known as the Pedibus and Bicibus, or "walking bus" and "cycling bus". The children are supervised by volunteers along a clearly signposted route.
Representatives from the cities involved - Kruševac (Serbia); Labin (Croatia); Leon (Spain); Sarajevo (Bosnia); Soissons (France); and Strängnäs (Sweden) - were impressed by what they saw.
Are Trains Better Than Bus Rapid Transit Systems? A Look at the Evidence
The world’s great public transit systems: Tokyo’s Metro, London’s Tube, Honk Kong’s MTR…and Mexico City’s bus rapid transit corridors? Trains are often seen as the pinnacle of modern urban transport infrastructure. They’re green and efficient, supported by permanent, complex track infrastructure. Bus rapid transit systems, on the other hand, are less flashy and often associated with their slow cousins, the local buses.
But in a new study published in Transport Reviews researchers Jesper Ingvardson and Otto Nielsen from the Technical University of Denmark point to data that suggests there’s little that separates the two approaches in many contexts.
Traffic management as a Service – a solution for small and medium-sized cities
Polis member, the city of Ghent, has secured European money to develop further its concept of Traffic Management as a Service (TMaaS). The concept is based on a fully digital and virtual platform that processes traffic data and provides real-time information to residents.
Saudi Arabia's $500 Billion Fantasy of a Utopian Megacity
The kingdom bills its latest planned city, Neom, as a liberal metropolis where humanity can chart its future together. Can it deliver?
The promotional video for Neom, Saudi Arabia’s latest desert city project, promises not just a megacity, but a utopian metropolis serving humankind.
“This is the blank page you need to write humanity’s next chapter,” the British narrator intones as visions of flawless greenhouse vegetation, frolicking families of all races and creeds, and solar panels gently float across the screen. “This is where we can prepare together for the next era of human progress.”
The City is not stuck - Jean-Yves Chapuis book
Jean-Yves Chapuis released a new book on the city: The City is not stuck.
In this book, he is calling every city actor for change in the city, so as to face the upcoming environmental and social challenges. He's proposing solutions to make the city a place where everyone can reach their potential.
The book is centered on learning to live another way, and rethink the cities with a more global vision focused on the new living ways, and from the inhabitants of the cities.
Recognising refugee qualifications
The refugee crisis has affected most countries in Europe. The Council of Europe is developing tools to support refugees to integrate and contribute to their new host communities. One such initiative is the European Qualifications Passport for Refugees (EQPR). Based on the Council of Europe/UNESCO Lisbon Recognition Convention, the EQPR is being tested through a pilot project in partnership with the Greek authorities and the recognition centers of Greece, Italy, Norway and the UK. The UNHCR also supports the project.
The Making Cities Work call has opened!
On October 24th the JPI Urban Europe call Making Cities Work opened for applicants. The call invites municipalities, businesses, researchers, civil society and other stakeholders to build transnational consortia to create challenge-driven innovation projects for European urban areas that have the potential to result in commercially successful services and products.
TransMilenio Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system
The TransMilenio Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system in the city of Bogotá, Colombia provides residents with efficient and safe mass transit that encourages high ridership.
During the 1990s, Bogotá’s population increased rapidly, largely due to internal migration from the countryside, simultaneously the public transport system was in decline and not able to cope with the increase in users.
In 1999, Bogotá’s mayor, Enrique Peñalosa, proposed a plan for a Bus Rapid Transit system, the TransMilenio, that would improve the efficiency and safety of public passenger transport services by providing access to the urban poor, enhance private sector involvement in service provision, reduce air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions and lay the foundation for a comprehensive urban development process for the city.
How to design streets for humans and self-driving cars
Urban planners talk about two visions of the future city: heaven and hell. Hell, in case it's not clear, is bad—cities built for technologies, big companies, and vehicles instead of the humans who actually live in them. And hell, in some ways, is here. Today's US cities are dominated by highways there were built by razing residential neighborhoods. Few sidewalks and fewer bike lanes. It's all managed by public policies that incentivize commuting in your car. Alone. Trapped in traffic.
4 tips for effective implementation of Smart City solutions
Smart Cities are implementing new solutions offered by technologies, whose evolution is turning them into new fields of practice. One such new field is telematics, which incorporates telecommunications, vehicle and transport technologies, road safety, engineering, and computer science.
For Procurement Reform, Cities See Value in Learning What's Worked Elsewhere
Lots of cities want to increase their outreach to women- and minority-owned businesses. Often, that means taking a look at the best programs in other jurisdictions.
This story was produced with support from the City Accelerator program.
The way Joann Massey sees it, city procurement is an issue of civil rights. As the director of minority- and women-owned business development for the city of Memphis, Tenn., Massey says she wants to use her city’s purchasing power to help bridge gaps of class and income inequality. And she points to Memphis’ own history as an epicenter of the civil rights fight, where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated in 1968, a day after delivering his famous “Mountaintop” speech.
Is your city as smart as its residents?
How can cities with 18th-century infrastructure support 21st-century life? Smart infrastructure innovations could save cities millions.
The world is witnessing an unprecedented level of urbanization with an estimated 1 million new urban dwellers worldwide over the next forty years. While this trend creates great opportunities for cities, it also places great stress on those infrastructure systems that were designed for the needs of a much smaller and less technologically-advanced past population.
National urban policies are about seeing cities as core to the collective good
When it comes to the age-old negotiation between local and national governments, African Centre for Cities co-founder Susan Parnell sees two extremes.
On the one side are those who believe that cities have all the answers, and that if they were just unshackled from the rules set out by national governments, they could provide robust economies and just societies for all. That vision is crystallized in the late Benjamin Barber’s book “If Mayors Ruled the World.”
On the other side are the staunch multilateralists, who believe that postwar institutions such as the United Nations — by definition a “countries club” where only national governments have the final say — know best.
Culture and third places in cities: Highlights from the Culture Forum in Ghent
130 representatives from 64 cities met in Ghent on 25-27 October 2017 to discuss the role of culture in shaping third places in cities.
The theme was chosen because third places are playing a growing role in cities: third places function as meeting places for a variety of people, as spaces for cooperation, connection and inspiration.
In Ghent, we shared local examples and developed recommendations on how to develop successful models for new public spaces for culture in cities.
These winning photos capture the future of sustainable cities
The premise behind the Sustainable Cities photo competition was simple. We wanted to learn what people around the world “see” when they hear the words “sustainable cities.”
The submissions – and we at the Global Platform for Sustainable Cities received more than 90 entries from over 40 countries around the world – are very revealing.
Overcoming administrative barriers to SUMP development
At this year's CIVITAS Forum, the three CIVITAS Sustainable Urban Mobility Plan (SUMP) projects PROSPERITY, SUITS and SUMPs-Up organised a World Café session to identify solutions for challenges related to institutional cooperation.
Stakeholder involvement and engagement, alongside institutional cooperation, pose serious challenges during SUMP development: those working on SUMP projects often have to deal with complicated and complex governance systems.
One question formed the focus of the session - how can we work best within existing governance structures to increase SUMP take-up?
To find answers, participants explored how collaboration between different governance structures inside and outside city administrations might be enhanced.
SMURBS: SMart URBan Solutions for air quality, disasters and city growth
SMURBS, which stands for SMart URBan Solutions for Air Quality, Disasters and Urban Growth, is a new research project funded through Horizon2020 of the European Commission. It is coordinated by the National Observatory of Athens and includes 19 partners from 12 countries.
Washington DC is a blueprint for better cities.
With its focus on renewable energy sources and eco-friendly buildings, Washington D.C is setting new standards for cities not just in the U.S. but also globally.
The U.S. capital recently received the highest level of certification in the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standard – making it the world’s first LEED Platinum city.
Barcelona hosts global meeting on housing as a human right
Local and regional leaders and housing policy experts met in Barcelona from 2-3 November to reaffirm their commitment to housing as a human right and share experiences on making it a reality.
The meeting, “Cities for the Right to Housing”, was hosted by UCLG Co-President and Mayor of Barcelona, Ada Colau and the UCLG Committee on Social Inclusion, Participatory Democracy and Human Rights (CISDP). It was held in the framework of UCLG’s “wave of action” on housing for 2017-2018.
New Legislation Adopted in Finland to Enable MaaS
The Act on Transport Services brings together transport market legislation and creates the preconditions for digitalisation of transport and new business models. Its key aim is provision of customer-oriented transport services.
The Act will bring changes to the current state of the transport market that is strictly regulated and guided by public measures. It will promote fairness of competition in the passenger transport market and competitiveness of the service providers of both passenger and goods transport.
Cities Are One Big Evolutionary Experiment
Urbanization has unintended consequences on city-dwelling creatures, from the peppered moths of the Industrial Revolution to today’s pesticide-resistant bed bug.
Historically, the most convincing case for evolution came from the the parts of the natural world left largely untouched by humans. It was, after all, on the isolated Galapagos Islands off the coast of Ecuador that finches—and their many different beaks—helped shape Charles Darwin’s famous theory back in the 1800s.
How cities can fight climate change most effectively
Energy-efficient construction is key to lowering urban emissions, study finds.
What are the best ways for U.S. cities to combat climate change? A new study co-authored by an MIT professor indicates it will be easier for cities to reduce emissions coming from residential energy use rather than from local transportation — and this reduction will happen mostly thanks to better building practices, not greater housing density.
Energy efficiency in Stockholm gets €56m boost
The European Investment Bank (EIB) is lending €56 million (£49m) to build “nearly zero-energy” apartments in Stockholm.
Non-profit private housing firm SKB will upgrade 349 apartments between 2018 and 2021 and reduce the amount of energy consumed to less than 55kWh per square metre.
Alexander Stubb, EIB Vice President said: “This brings us one step closer towards a greener society which is less dependent on fossil fuels”.
On the morality of demolishing communities against their will
Publication of the mayor of London’s revised Good Practice Guide to Estate Regeneration has been suspiciously delayed after Jeremy Corbyn backed resident ballots. Late consultation responses since Grenfell Tower may be one reason. But Sadiq Khan also has a defining decision to make – on residents’ right to vote to approve or reject proposals to demolish their homes.
Whose side will he come down on: some influential Labour councils and land-hungry developers? Or the 2m Londoners living on social housing estates, and the London Assembly’s Labour Group, amongst many others? The signs so far suggest a fudge.
Oslo’s Ambitious Goals for the Urban Environment
Oslo, Norway aims to be carbon-neutral by 2050. They have the largest number of electric cars of any city in the world. They have vast protected natural areas, and they recycle everything: sewage sludge becomes biogas to fuel garbage trucks and some buses; food waste becomes biofuel and fertilizer; waste-to-energy incineration plants generate 20 percent of the city’s heat, and they’re piloting a carbon-capture and storage program. All of this helped them earn the title of European Commission’s Green Capital for 2019.
Seven Conditions for creating a Smart City through Partnerships
Megacities are even outperforming countries in terms of economic activity. Meanwhile, societies are facing unprecedented challenges that need to be tackled in order to foster a sustainable, fair and prosperous future. As cities are where most power, people and money are concentrated, they are the stages upon which most of humanity’s challenges will be played out in the future. Here you are seven conditions for success regarding PPPs in Smart Cities.
Smart Cities Took Center Stage At The 24th ITS World Congress
Disruption has accompanied the rise of technology, connectivity and analytics. In both the private and public sectors, the domains of formerly disparate agencies and fields have begun to merge in the wake of such innovation. Leaders on all sides are still learning how to process this, but collaboration is going to be a major theme moving forward as barriers between siloed sectors become blurred.
A good example of this trend is transportation, as topics like data analytics, machine learning and community engagement have become integral to the discussion of the future of transit. As such, any conversation on transit also becomes a conversation on technology and cities. This was reflected at the 24th ITS World Congress, held from October 29 to November 2 in Montreal. The theme for the show this year was “Next Generation Integrated Mobility: Driving Smart Cities.”
Tesla Superchargers Soon Powering City Centers
First Urban Superchargers Soon Powering City of Chicago & Boston - And Further Will Follow
Where to charge your Tesla in city centers apart from your home? According to the American electric carmaker based in Palo Alto, California, it will be possible to fill up with electricity not only along highways on popular driving routes in the near future. Its Supercharger network will soon be expanded into city centers. Tesla focuses on intensely frequented and easily accessible places like supermarkets, shopping centers and downtown districts to ensure a smooth charging process.
Global Urban Competitiveness Report 2017-2018 launched
The Global Urban Competitiveness Report 2017-2018 –Housing Prices: changing World Cities has been launched.
The launch was done on 30 October, 2017, during the World Cities Day – Global Urban Competitiveness Forum which was convened at Baiyun International Conference Center in Guangzhou. The National Academy of Economic Strategy (NAES), Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS) and the UN–Habitat jointly released the report.
“Better Planning, Better Cities” – Cities to share smart solutions to urban sustainability
There is strength in numbers, the old idiom goes. Indeed, history shows that collaboration fosters ideas and results. Next week, the Global Platform for Sustainable Cities, or GPSC, will convene in New Delhi, India, to again share ideas and build on their collective vision: to work towards shaping cities that are sustainable, thriving, and inclusive through the decades ahead.
Taking back the streets of Shanghai
"Just who do the streets belong to?” asks Chen Jiajun from the environmental group Green Bike Transit to a packed audience at a book talk in Guangzhou, a bustling city of 14 million people northwest of Hong Kong. “Planners? Designers? Managers? Or the ordinary people?” he suggests.
This is the question that Shanghai Street Design Guide, a new design manual from the government’s urban planners, sets out to answer. Published by Tongji University Press in October 2016, it makes the case for re-designing built-up spaces around the human experience, an idea that is garnering interest across China.
So what might this look like in practice?
The three-degree world: the cities that will be drowned by global warming
The UN is warning that we are now on course for 3C of global warming. This will ultimately redraw the map of the world
When UN climate negotiators meet for summit talks this month, there will be a new figure on the table: 3C.
Until now, global efforts such as the Paris climate agreement have tried to limit global warming to 2C above pre-industrial levels. However, with latest projections pointing to an increase of 3.2C by 2100, these goals seem to be slipping out of reach.
The Dos And Don’ts Of Building A Smart City
The fact is smart home products are just the beginning of what will become a much larger connected network within society. Now, various cities around the world are taking that connectivity to the next level. They’re addressing some long-standing development issues by examining the potential of smart cities. In fact, estimates are that more than $41 trillion will be invested in Internet of Things (IoT) tools and platforms to modernize cities around the world.
Who will be the 1st winner of the PLATFORMAwards?
Is your city or region is a leader in development cooperation? Apply now for the first European prize of cities and regions’ international action, and show the world what your city is doing for sustainable development!
The PLATFORMAwards aim to reward the best city-to-city or region-to-region development cooperation projects, promoting decentralised cooperation and collecting data and indicators from the best European practices.
Why do people want to live in the city?
Why do we want to live in the city? Where does that almost mythical attraction come from? The city beckons. But the city is also too busy, too expensive and too small. And yet, despite all the inconveniences, we want to live in the city. Why?
Living in the city means waiting a year for a parking permit. Running the risk of being run over by groups of tourists on bicycles without any knowledge of the traffic rules and without even knowing how a bicycle really works. And yet, that same city is where it’s all happening; where people live and work can be found. And where you can still order sushi at 3:00 a.m.
Can Dar es Salaam become the next global model on transit-oriented development?
Many urban planners may know the success stories of Curitiba, Singapore or London realizing transit-oriented development (TOD). However, TOD is still very new in Sub-Saharan Africa. Although this concept of leveraging on major transit infrastructure to affect integrated land-use development for greater benefits may be gaining more recognition, there are few examples of successful TOD in Sub-Saharan Africa beyond a couple of South African cities, such as Cape Town and Johannesburg.
Dar es Salaam, Tanzania now has the perfect opportunity to become a pioneer on transit-oriented development.
Visit the new SUNRISE project website!
The new CIVITAS SUNRISE project website is now live with information and updates about its upcoming activities.
SUNRISE stands for Sustainable Urban Neighbourhoods Research and Implementation Support in Europe.SUNRISE’s innovative approach lies in its concrete involvement of citizens, stakeholders and users throughout all phases of the innovation process, from the early identification of problems to the implementation of solutions and their evaluation.
These solutions will be tested in the six SUNRISEneighbourhood cities of Bremen, Budapest, Jerusalem, Malmo, Southend-on-Sea and Thessaloniki through the so-called “neighbourhood mobility labs”.
Revitalize the City, Invigorate the Region
Cleveland’s Fairfax neighborhood is as unique as it is typical.
Once a solid, middle-class neighborhood situated between downtown Cleveland and the University Circle cultural area, Fairfax suffered from a loss of population over the decades and began to decline.
Today, Fairfax is home to more than 5,000 people, the majority of whom are in low- to moderate-income families. The impact of the recession of the late 2000s still lingers as some of its residents struggle with a lack of education and, therefore, the inability to get a job.
In stark contrast, the neighborhood is also home to the world-renowned Cleveland Clinic, a city within a city that includes shiny, new buildings where doctors care for patients from around the globe and researchers look for cures for a host of illnesses.
Tashkent City: is 'progress' worth the price being paid in Uzbekistan?
The silver skyscrapers of Tashkent City are intended to declare Uzbekistan’s capital ‘open for business’. But for the residents of the historic mahalla districts, the cost is extreme
Community Energy - what's new from the EU?
About a year ago now, the European Commission tabled its proposal to reform the EU’s electricity market and better promote the use of renewable energy sources.
As part of the revision of these two legislative proposals, the EU’s executive body formally acknowledged the reality of the new, multipolar energy market, by providing for the first time a legal recognition for smaller players, ie the citizen cooperatives and other local entities that develop the so-called “community energy” projects.
100% RE in cities—Final Report from Forum 2017
In May of 2017, Renewable Cities convened its second Global Learning Forum in Vancouver, British Columbia.
The event brought together leaders in the 100% renewable energy in cities movement along with vanguard city officials, implementers, researchers, and other organizations that are advancing urban energy solutions around the world. It consisted of over three dozen workshops, plenary sessions, site visits, and other activities.
We are pleased to present the outcomes of Global Learning Forum 2017, which includes the voices of our 320 session leaders, speakers, and participants.
Facing tomorrow's urban challenges: welcome to MUNI WORLD 2018
As cities become smarter, new realities arise: you are more vulnerable to cyber-attacks, but you also have a large array of new opportunities in your relationships with startups. At MUNI WORLD 2018, the yearly event on challenges and opportunities facing smart cities, meet the leading experts in cyber-protection and discover the best ways to drive urban joint ventures between municipalities and start-ups.
This three-day event will take place from 13 to 15 February 2018, in Tel Aviv, Israel.
How smart cities can protect against IoT security threats
As long as developers work in tandem with one another, the security problems presented by the development of IoT within smart cities won’t be insurmountable.
Smart cities, which were once confined to the realms of science fiction books, are rapidly becoming a reality all around the globe. Unfortunately, like all revolutionizing innovations, smart cities are developing their own unique challenges alongside of their perks. So what are industry insiders and tomorrow’s city planners doing to face these challenges?
Can we make our cities work?
Implementing the New Urban Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals in Europe
In September 2015, the United Nations adopted the Sustainable Development Goals, and one year later the New Urban Agenda, a global milestone agreement to guide worldwide efforts towards sustainable urbanisation. In the same year, the Pact of Amsterdam was adopted and the European Union agreed upon the Urban Agenda for the EU. The question of the discussion was: Which possibilities do cities and regions in Europe have to get engaged and how can we ensure that all levels of governments and relevant stakeholders are effectively engaged in the implementation of these frameworks?
Researchers Calculate the Healthiest City Density
Despite the image of clean air, green backyards and fresh food often associated with leaving a dense urban core for more spread-out surroundings, new research finds that city dwellers are actually healthier — and happier — than their suburban counterparts.
The study, from Oxford University and the University of Hong Kong, looked at the impact of density on more than 400,000 residents in 22 British cities, including London, Glasgow and Cardiff. Researchers nailed down the optimum density from a health perspective: more than 32 homes per hectare.
New IRIS Smart Cities project
The recently started IRIS Smart Cities project will support several Covenant of Mayors signatories in the delivery of their local action plans.
IRIS - Integrated and Replicable Solutions for Co-Creation in Sustainable Cities - is a 5-year EU-funded project (October 2017 - 2022) which seeks to enable the co-creation of smart and sustainable cities in Europe, as part of the European Smart Cities and Communities initiative. In order to achieve this, the IRIS project will focus on five key areas for action - energy positive districts with integration of renewables, smart energy management, electric mobility, citizen engagement and digital innovation platforms.
Transforming urban waterfronts
“The waterfront isn’t just something unto itself. It’s connected to everything else,” said Jane Jacobs, a prominent urbanist.
This connection is twofold; it refers to the relationship between cities and their waterfronts – as ever-changing as cities themselves.
Evolving from its past definition during the industrial era as a city’s service yard, the urban waterfront has, in recent decades, taken on new meanings.
On one hand, the waterfront is playing a more significant role in transforming the urban fabric of a city or even reshaping a city’s identity.
Do Brands Matter in Public Transit?
Metrolinx, the provincial government agency that oversees public transit in southern Ontario, including Toronto, recently found itself under fire for spending upwards of a quarter of a million dollars to refresh its brand. The agency says the primary impetus for the project is a lack of public understanding of what it does.
Research Metrolinx conducted in 2016 found that nearly half of the residents the agency serves don’t know what Metrolinx is or what role it plays. Still some charge that the transit agency is wasting taxpayers’ money on a mere stylistic logo change that has no connection to any real-world service improvements.
Experts on sustainable development and housing wanted
Are you a local or regional government expert? Our global organisation, United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), is producing a report analysing the role of local and regional governments in the UN Global Goals (SDGs) and in decent housing.
UCLG is looking for experts or researchers in Europe to contribute to the report (entitled GOLD V). If you’re interested, please answer the call for tenders by 4 October, 11 am. For more info, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
These are the safest cities around the world
Big cities aren't necessarily unsafe.
In fact, some of the safest cities in the world are urban hubs that boast low crime rates and high levels of safety.
The Economist's 2017 safe cities index, sponsored by NEC, ranked 60 cities based on the factors of personal security, digital security, health security, and infrastructure security.
Cities Are Thinking and Acting Globally, Says Paris Mayor
At the opening plenary of an international gathering of city leaders, Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo singled out one nation’s leader. It was not her own.
“The retreat by Donald Trump from the Paris climate accord is a catastrophe, a major error,” she told James Fallows, the Atlantic correspondent and panel moderator at CityLab Paris, the annual gathering of mayors, technologists, and other urban thinkers.
Further archived news available on request from: Kate More