Our Cities Are Undergoing a Radical Transformation
Around the world, cities are undergoing the biggest growth of the past 100 years. More than one-half of the world’s people now live in cities, a proportion expected to grow to two-thirds by 2050.
To support this urbanization, trillions of dollars are flowing into communities. The number of district-scale projects is increasing at a record pace, and cities are making significant investments to build and revitalize neighborhoods, commercial districts, brownfields, as well as critical water, energy and transportation infrastructure systems.
The Cost of Growth has been Heavy, Hitting the Neighborhood the Hardest
Cities now contribute to a vast and growing equity gap — where the postal code a child is born into has a bigger role in determining their future than any other single factor. Worldwide, a number of complex issues are colliding: income, education, and health disparities that sit at the root of social unrest; blight and ecological degradation; and the growing threat of climate change.
Here is the good news — there is a growing appetite for innovation as cities seek competitive advantage to attract talent and investment, embrace aging and historically disenfranchised populations, restore cultural integrity, enhance prosperity and respond intelligently to a rapidly changing climate.
Neighborhoods Are the Soul and Life of the City
Yes, neighborhoods sit at the heart of some of the most complex challenges facing city makers today. But they can also become the building blocks of sustainable cities.
Neighborhoods provide a uniquely valuable scale to introduce and accelerate investments that can achieve profound improvements in equity, resilience, and climate protection. Neighborhoods are small enough to innovate and big enough to leverage meaningful investment and public policy.