What is the future of street design? How do we define “the street” in the future? As new mobility options and smart city deployments arrive on our streets and sidewalks, street design is top of mind. Cities are faced with a growing list of urban services and smart city street deployments to balance on the street: bikeshare and scooters to bathrooms, digital kiosks, neighborhood news feeds, pedestrian safety, and street furniture. As a result, cities and their partners have to think carefully about how to better design their streets and who we are designing our streets for. You will hear from three of the leading thinkers – Anna Muessig from Gehl, Geeti Silwal from Perkins & Will, and Ed Krafcik from Soofa, on how we redesign our streets for public life and what our streets might look like in the near-term and distant future. The webinar is being held Tuesday, October 22, 1-2 p.m. ET. Follow this link to learn more.
The children of the Rey Poeta orchestra filed onto the stage at Mexico City’s Anthropology Museum Monday morning clutching recycled instruments made from buckets, bits of piping, and plastic bottles. This was an innovative way to illustrate the 2019 World Habitat Day theme of Frontier technologies as an innovative tool to transform waste to wealth. The Museum’s auditorium was packed with over 300 dignitaries, politicians, experts, academics, NGOs, and young people and from round the world eager to share innovative ideas. The Executive Director of UN-Habitat, Ms. Maimunah Mohd Sharif, told a packed audience “We are facing a global waste management challenge on a global scale that requires urgent action. Our cities produce 7 to 10 billion tonnes of waste a year and current rubbish collection services don’t even reach half of the urban population in low-income countries.” Full video linked here. Outside the auditorium, participants signed a large board pledging to rethink, refuse, reduce, reuse, and recycle their waste. This pledge echoes the UN-Habitat Waste Wise Cities campaign which encourages cities to sign up to promote sustainable waste management and has so far attracted over 80 cities. This year World Habitat Day celebrations were held across the world including Cameroon, Kenya, Canada, Japan, Thailand, Pakistan, Bangladesh and India. Last year over 80 cities, towns and communities celebrated the day. Follow this link to learn more about World Habitat Day.
With the impact of climate change and urbanization growing rapidly, cities are called to act and redesign their urban policies to ensure a healthy life to their citizens. In this context, FAO recently launched the “FAO Framework for the Urban Food Agenda,” which encourages local and national governments to adopt a Food Systems approach in their public policies, in order to face environmental crises and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals also at a local level. The seminar foresees an interactive discussion after a presentation by Ms. Barbara Emanuel on the case from the city of Toronto, which leveraged on climate change action and a Food Systems approach to improving the life of its communities. Ms. Barbara Emanuel is currently Manager of the Toronto Food Strategy, which proposes an innovative vision for Toronto’s food, integrating health, climate change action, city-building, and systems transformation. This discussion will provide an opportunity to understand how Food Systems are able to fight climate crises, fostering sustainable cities with inclusive urban policies that promote safe nutriment and new food procurement strategies: from food loss and waste reduction to influencing public’s dietary behavior. The proposed actions reflect the commitments outlined in the C40 Good Food Cities Declaration, with scientific evidences enforcing the need to introduce this approach at any level, as FAO’s core mission through the Urban Food Agenda.
The seminar on Tuesday, October 15 will be held in Rome, Italy. You can join via Skype (5-6:30 a.m. EDT) at this Link.
Today 55% of the world’s population live in cities and towns and the number is growing every day. Every October UN-Habitat and partners organize a month of activities, events, and discussions on urban sustainability. 2018 was the most successful Urban October on record with a total of 61 countries and 107 cities marking World Habitat Day and World Cities Day, and hosting events to celebrate Urban October. Urbanization presents some of the most significant opportunities and challenges in the world today. Cities are centers for economic growth and development but also face demographic, environmental, economic, and social challenges. Follow this link to learn more about Urban October.
The Co-Cities project is designed to test, evaluate, and refine the Co-City Methodology through a scientific, multi-year project focused on collecting data on innovative public policies and local projects focused on shared urban resources from over 100 cities around the world. The Co-Cities project investigates those new forms of collaborative city-making that are leading urban areas toward new forms of participatory urban governance, inclusive economic growth, and social innovation. It is rooted on the conceptual pillars of the urban commons, and it comprehends a protocol, a methodology, and five design principles that are in the process of being tested in selected European and American cities. A “Co-City” is based on urban co-governance which implies shared, collaborative, polycentric governance of the urban commons and in which environmental, cultural, knowledge, and digital urban resources are co-managed through contractual or institutionalized public-private-community partnerships. Follow this link to learn more.
It was dusk on the opening night of Burning Man, and the makers and misfits were touching up their art projects. Subwoofers oontz-oontzed as cyclists draped in glowing LEDs pedaled through the desert. And Paul Romer, a reigning laureate of the Nobel Prize in economics, sat on a second-story porch at the center of it all, marveling at a subtlety of the street grid. The roads narrowed as they approached small plazas around the impermanent city. How clever, he thought, this way of funneling pedestrians toward gathering places. And most Burners probably didn’t even notice. Follow this link to learn more.
Air Quality is quickly becoming a global health crisis, especially in highly urbanized areas. Urban air pollution depends on many factors, ranging from meteorological conditions to geographic factors. Guest speaker, Dr. Michelle Bell is an expert in urban air quality and will bring new insights to this topic. Dr. Bell’s research investigates how human health is affected by atmospheric systems, including air pollution and weather. Other areas of interest in research include health impacts of climate change and environmental justice. Much of her work is based in epidemiology, biostatistics, and environmental engineering. Her research is designed to be targeted toward policy makers to contribute to well-informed decision-making. The conference will be held Friday, October 4, 2019 from 12-1 p.m. in Thomas Library, room 165. Follow this link to learn more.
Join Ohio Food Policy Network for the 9th Annual Ohio Food Policy Summit on Monday, October 28, 2019 at the Nationwide & Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center, hosted by the Ohio Food Policy Network and the John Glenn College of Public Affairs. The Summit will kick-off with a morning workshop “Redesigning the Table: Using Equity and Systems for Collective Action,” which will be led by Johns Hopkins University’s Food Policy Network that is intended to strengthen and equip Ohio’s local food policy councils. This workshop is designed for members of local food policy councils, but anyone interested is welcome to register and attend. Follow this link to learn more.