Cities worldwide will soon have an opportunity to exchange urban city solutions with one another.
That’s what organisers of the newly-established Lee Kuan Yew World City Prize hope the award will achieve.
The international award will be given out once every two years.
By 2030, more than half of the world’s population will be living in cities.
But rapid urbanisation brings with it many challenges such as ensuring infrastructure keeps up with population growth, sustaining economic growth without damaging the environment, and keeping development socially inclusive.
S Dhanabalan, Lee Kuan Yew World City Prize Council chairperson, said: “Land use, buildings, transportation, yes, these are very important but how do they impact the people? How do they build a community? These are very key elements to making a liveable, vibrant city.”
Singapore has had experience in dealing with these problems, coming up with several successful urban management programmes and policies like public housing and electronic road pricing.
And it hopes to share its expertise and tap into the experiences of other countries to build sustainable cities.
Minister for National Development, Mah Bow Tan, said: “If we succeed, cities can be vibrant, economic engines that improve the well-being of their people and in an environment that is resource efficient and is sensitive to the environment.”
The Lee Kuan Yew World City Prize hopes to encourage that by recognising individuals and organisations that display foresight, good governance or innovation in tackling the many urban challenges faced by cities.
The World City Prize will focus on ideas that can produce social, economic and environmental benefits.
On top of that, these solutions will need to be practical and cost-effective and easily replicated in other cities.
The prize will be awarded during the World Cities Summit that will be held in Singapore next year.
Nomination forms and full details of the prize can be found at www.leekuanyewworldcityprize.com.sg.
Source : Channel NewsAsia – 22 Jun 2009