Chapter 1 – From Habitat II to Habitat III: Twenty Years of Urban Development
- When well-managed, urbanization fosters social and economic advancement and improved quality of life for all.
- The current model of urbanization is unsustainable in many respects.
- Many cities all over the world are grossly unprepared for the challenges associated with urbanization.
- A new agenda is required to effectively address these challenges and take advantage of the opportunities offered by urbanization.
- The new urban agenda should promote cities and human settlements that are environmentally sustainable, resilient, socially inclusive, safe and violence-free and economically productive.
Chapter 2 – Urbanization as a Transformative Force
- Cities have become a positive and potent force for addressing sustainable economic growth, development and
prosperity and for driving innovation.
- Realizing the gains of urbanization will depend on how urban growth is planned and managed, and the extent to which the benefits accruing from urbanization are equitably distributed.
- The need to move from sectoral interventions to strategic urban planning and more comprehensive urban policy platforms is crucial in transforming city form.
- When ICT is deployed unevenly, it can create a digital divide, which can exacerbate inequality, characterized by
well-connected affluent neighbourhoods coexisting with under-serviced residents in low-income neighbourhoods.
Chapter 3 – The Fate of Housing
- If the emerging future of cities is to be sustainable, a new approach that places housing at the centre of urban policies is required.
- UN-Habitat proposes a strategy that places housing at the centre of the new urban agenda and seeks to reestablish the important role of housing in achieving sustainable urbanization.
- At the national level, the goal is to integrate housing into national urban policies and into UN-Habitat’s strategic thinking on planned urbanization.
- At the local level, the importance of housing must be reinforced within appropriate regulatory frameworks, urban planning and finance, and as part of the development of cities and people.
Chapter 4 – The Widening Urban Divide
- Cities are the sites of innovation. They are the places where new economic ideas crystallize and where heterogeneous groupings of people learn to co-exist as neighbours.
- The heterogeneity, density and diversity of cities, which is what makes them nodes of economic innovation and
democratic progress, has to be managed and planned.
- The challenge of exclusion from urban civic spaces can be tackled head-on through ‘the right to the city,’ and a rights-based approach.
- Habitat III comes at the right time not only to renew the international commitment to inclusive cities.
Chapter 5 – “Just” Environmental Sustainabilities
- A human rights-based approach to the urban environment emphasizes our universal dependence on unadulterated, abundant resources.
- Mainstreaming the notion ‘just sustainabilities’ into urban planning and policies will challenge dominant, outdated preconceptions, while taking in specific local ecological constraints.
- New planning approaches are emerging that offer a range of possibilities to finance environmental action and recognize its valuable contribution beyond purely economic valuation.
- Strengthening multi-level governance approaches is essential to achieving low-carbon cities and raising standards of urban resilience in the future.
Chapter 6 – Rules of the Game: Urban Governance and Legislation
- Good quality urban law contributes to investment, strong economic performance and wealth creation, as it provides predictability and order in urban development.
- Effective local governance rests on participatory service delivery planning, budgeting, management and monitoring. When endowed with appropriate legal powers, adequate financial allocations and the human capacity they can drive the transformation agenda.
- The critical ingredient for successful legal reform is credibility. Credibility is enhanced when laws are culturally
resonant and enforceable.
- A focus on basic, essential statutory and derived legislation that can be enforced will provide the most effective support to sustainable urban development.
Chapter 7 – A City that Plans: Reinventing Urban Planning
- Integrated, multi-sectoral planning approaches have a strong success record and should be used in many more cities and regions.
- Local circumstances, needs and requirements must remain pre-eminent in urban planning, so are gender considerations and involvement of— and responsiveness to— the diverse populations.
- Plans should be prepared at various geographic scales and integrated to support sustainable and coordinated road, transit, housing, economic development and land use across geographic and political boundaries.
- In developing countries, education and training for professional planners should be increased and capacity for
planning education be enhanced, concomitantly.
Chapter 8 – The Changing Dynamics of Urban Economies
- The link between planning and economic development policies for cities must be integrated across all levels of government.
- Strengthening city finances through public-private partnerships, land taxes and user charges and the development of more equitable fiscal arrangements between national and city governments is essential for sustainable development.
- Providing a legal framework for the decentralization of responsibilities is essential to improving city governance structures.
- Linking urban policy to economic development is critical to improving the competitiveness and performance of local economies.
Chapter 9 – Principles For a New Urban Agenda
- The public interest must be considered as a fundamental principle by which policies and actions affecting urban areas should be judged.
- Unless a new urban agenda is given prominence in national policies, the future of cities will become more unequal, less productive, more associated with poor living standards, at highrisk from the impacts of climate change.
- It is for Habitat III to map out a path for inclusive emerging futures under the guidance of the Sustainable Development Goals.
- A set of principles that guide major shifts in strategic and policy thinking are presented to ensure that human rights, the rule of law, equitable development and democratic participation are the bastions of the New Urban Agenda.
- The new urban agenda must be based on a set of
implementation strategies that move beyond a sector-based approach. Regional specificity must be considered in the formulation of a credible New Urban Agenda which must be problem-oriented, programmatic and practicable.
Chapter 10 – The New Urban Agenda
- The New Urban Agenda must be forward looking, and focused on problem solving with clear means of implementation. It should adopt a city-wide approach to development with concrete strategies and actions, introducing clear funding mechanisms and effective means of monitoring.
- The agenda conveys a sense of urgency in the implementation of policies and actions that cannot depend on
political schedules or opportunistic moments, but in clear and well-defined implementation plans.
- The new agenda will seek to create a mutually reinforcing relationship between urbanization and development, with the aim that they become parallel vehicles for sustainable development.
- The New Urban Agenda should establish links to other global agreements and agendas and to be clearly connected to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
- The vision of the New Urban agenda can be steered to induce transformative change promoting a new urbanization model that is universal and adaptable to different national circumstances.