This century will see a substantial majority of the world’s population living in urban centers. The Habitat III Conference therefore has, as its mission, the adoption of a New Urban Agenda—an action-oriented document which will set global standards of achievement in sustainable urban development, rethinking the way we build, manage, and live in cities through drawing together cooperation with committed partners, relevant stakeholders, and urban actors at all levels of government as well as the private sector.
Habitat III is the United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development to take place in Quito, Ecuador, from 17 to 20 October, 2016. In resolution 66/207 and in line with the bi-decennial cycle (1976, 1996 and 2016), the United Nations General Assembly decided to convene the Habitat III Conference to reinvigorate the global commitment to sustainable urbanization, to focus on the implementation of the New Urban Agenda, building on the Habitat Agenda of Istanbul in 1996.
Member States of the General Assembly, in resolution 67/216, decided that the objectives of the Conference are to secure renewed political commitment to sustainable urban development, assess accomplishments to date, address poverty, and identify and address new and emerging challenges. The Conference will result in a concise, focused, forward-looking and action-oriented outcome document. Habitat III is to play an important role in making cities and human settlements equitable, prosperous, sustainable, just, equal and safe.
Habitat III is one of the first United Nations global summits after the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Sustainable Development Goals. It offers a unique opportunity to discuss the important challenge of how cities, towns, and villages are planned and managed, in order to fulfill their role as drivers of sustainable development, and hence shape the implementation of new global development goals and the Paris Agreement on climate change.
The Habitat III Conference therefore has, as its mission, the adoption of a New Urban Agenda ￼ an action-oriented document which will set global standards of achievement in sustainable urban development, rethinking the way we build, manage, and live in cities through drawing together cooperation with committed partners, relevant stakeholders, and urban actors at all levels of government as well as the civil society and private sector.
The New Urban Agenda was agreed on 10 September 2016, culminating two years of inclusive and participatory preparatoryprocessofnegotiationsandglobaldebate. TheNewUrbanAgendaiscomprisedof175paragraphscontaining guidelines from member states and stakeholders on subjects varying from three principles: leave no one behind, sustainable and inclusive urban economies, and environmental sustainability.
The New Urban Agenda promotes some fundamental concepts and guidelines to make cities more inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable. It encourage, among others, urban densification, rather than extending the perimeter of the cities; the mixed use of the land, instead of zoning; the preservation of landscapes and natural resources and public spaces for all. The New Urban Agenda also reinforces better coordination between local governments national, subnational and as well as a holistic view of urban planning to ensure an effective cohesion, participation and social inclusion.
Zoleka Mandela pushes for the #SaveKidsLives 2020 Action Agenda
Within The New Urban Agenda, the global road safety community has been pushing for specific references towards sustainable cities that account for road traffic crashes. Several references to include safe and sustainable transport within the New Urban Agenda have been successful.
KEY INCLUDED POINTS:
PLANNING AND MANAGING URBAN SPATIAL DEVELOPMENT
"We will take measures to improve road safety and integrate it into sustainable mobility and transport infrastructure planning and design. Accompanied by awareness-raising initiatives, we will promote the safe system approach called for in the United Nations Decade of Action for Road Safety, with special attention to the needs of all women and girls, as well as children and youth, older persons and persons with disabilities, and those in vulnerable situations. We will work to adopt, implement, and enforce policies and measures to actively protect and promote pedestrian safety and cycling mobility, with a view to broader health outcomes, particularly the prevention of injuries and non-communicable diseases, and we will work to develop and implement comprehensive legislation and policies on motorcycle safety, given the disproportionally high and increasing numbers of motorcycle deaths and injuries globally, particularly in developing countries. We will promote the safe and healthy journey to school for every child as a priority".
"We will take measures to develop mechanisms and common frameworks at the national, sub-national, and local levels to evaluate the wider benefits of urban and metropolitan transport schemes, including impacts on the environment, the economy, social cohesion, quality of life, accessibility, road safety, public health, and action on climate change, among others".