Cities change the world
According to the UN, over two-thirds of the world’s population will be living in urban areas by 2050. Today the planet counts an estimated 4.2 billion urbanites; this number is set to rise to 5 billion by 2030 and 6.7 billion by 2050.
Cities lie at the heart of financial and migratory flows, and shape global societal values and lifestyles. They generate both economic wealth and technological innovation, and are the drivers of social and environmental transformation. They are windows on a rapidly changing world.
Since the beginning of the third millennium, city centres have been regenerated and intensified, while suburban areas have continued to spread. But the long-term development of cities raises many key issues. As victims of their own success, will they end up becoming unliveable? How environmentally and socially sustainable will these urban areas be? How can attractiveness and quality of life for all be effectively interconnected?
From New York to Paris, from Tokyo to Copenhagen, and from Singapore to Medellín, cities are inventing new development trajectories on a range of different scales, combining economic competitiveness, urban regeneration, social inclusion, energy frugality and climate resilience. By doing this, they are changing the world.
This issue of Les Cahiers highlights particularly inspiring strategies and initiatives that respond to the fundamental challenges faced by the Wider Grand Paris.
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This clickable map offers an entry point by metropolis to articles in the Cahiers no. 176.