WORLD URBANISM DAY
On November 8th, World Urbanism Day recognizes and promotes the role of planning and creating livable communities. The day is also known as World Town Planning Day.
The word urbanism describes how inhabitants of urban areas interact with the built environment. Urban areas are towns, cities, and other places with higher populations. The primary focus of urban planning is to make the community healthy and livable for its inhabitants. Urban planning also ensures orderly development.
- The most livable and healthy communities share these common factors:
- Provide residents with plenty of opportunities to enjoy a high quality of life.
- Strive to preserve or improve its economy and the quality of its environment.
- Desire to improve the health of its residents.
- Provide a variety of housing options for its residents.
- Include lots of areas for walking, biking, and being outdoors.
- Make public transportation readily available and affordable for all who need it.
- Contain schools, grocery stores, shopping malls, parks, recreational areas, and fitness facilities.
- When all of these factors are present, societies are better able to cope with population growth and climate changes.
Some of the world’s most healthy and livable cities include Osaka, Tokyo, Perth, Zurich, Geneva, Melbourne, and Brisbane. The city that tops the list is Auckland, New Zealand. Town planners in these cities must be doing a great job! On the other end of the spectrum, the least livable cities include Tripoli, Algiers, Dhaka, Port Moresby and Lagos. The least livable city in the world is Damascus, Syria.
HOW TO OBSERVE #WorldUrbanismDay
Planning associations around the world organize educational events to help the public better understand the importance of urban planning. During such events, residents are encouraged to connect with public health networks and get involved in urban planning projects in their communities. To participate:
- Develop ideas to improve things in your community, for example, better accessibility for the disabled or more walking paths.
- Get involved in urban planning by going to city council and county commissioner meetings.
- Read about influential urbanists, such as Jane Jacobs, Lewis Mumford, Robert Moses, and Naomi Klein.
- Find out where your community ranks on healthy and livable cities.
Spread awareness for this day on social media with #WorldUrbanismDay.
WORLD URBANISM DAY HISTORY
The late Professor Carlos Maria della Paolera of the University of Buenos Aires founded World Town Planning Day in 1949. He was also a civil engineer and a member of the national geography committee in Argentina. In later years, the day also became known as World Urbanism Day. Today more than 30 countries on 4 continents participate.