It’s 2016 and our planet is undergoing rapid urbanization. Today there are over 3.5 billion people living in cities, and by 2050 the United Nations says three billion more will join them . Remarkably, this means that by then, urban infrastructure for 1.4 million people will need to be built each week . The city challenges of population growth, inadequate infrastructure, generating new economic opportunities, climate change, and more are daunting and require the creation of bold and innovative urban development strategies. Without immediate and major shifts in our current trajectory, a good quality of life for city dwellers and the preservation of the environment are not sustainable.
Fortunately, a growing global consensus is beginning to emerge to tackle a seemingly intractable list of urban issues. To build and grow our cities in a sustainable manner, we’re going to have to think and act differently. In particular, we’re going to need to use innovative technology and a greater degree of civic engagement to move forward .
The architecture for a new generation of sustainable and high‐performing cities is starting to take shape. These smart cities are using mobile apps and connectivity, data and cloud, an Internet of Things (IoT), people engagement and process redesign, and much more to help redefine possibilities.
Urban design and development must be a deliberate process and ...