Linking the SDGs  with the

New Urban Agenda

NUA Commitment
23. We resolve to implement the New Urban Agenda as a key instrument for enabling national, subnational and local governments and all relevant stakeholders to achieve sustainable urban development.

25. We recognize that eradicating poverty in all its forms and dimensions, including extreme poverty, is the greatest global challenge and an indispensable requirement for sustainable development. We also recognize that growing inequality and the persistence of multiple dimensions of poverty, including the rising number of slum and informal-settlement dwellers, are affecting both developed and developing countries, and that the spatial organization, accessibility and design of urban space, as well as the infrastructure and basic services provision, together with development policies, can promote or hinder social cohesion, equality and inclusion.

34. We commit ourselves to promoting equitable and affordable access to sustainable basic physical and social infrastructure for all, without discrimination, including affordable serviced land, housing, modern and renewable energy, safe drinking water and sanitation, safe, nutritious and adequate food, waste disposal, sustainable mobility, health care and family planning, education, culture, and information and communications technologies. We further commit ourselves to ensuring that these services are responsive to the rights and needs of women, children and youth, older persons and persons with disabilities, migrants, indigenous peoples and local communities, as appropriate, and to those of others in vulnerable situations. In this regard, we encourage the elimination of legal, institutional, socioeconomic and physical barriers.

36. We commit ourselves to promoting appropriate measures in cities and human settlements that facilitate access for persons with disabilities, on an equal basis with others, to the physical environment of cities, in particular to public spaces, public transport, housing, education and health facilities, public information and communication (including information and communications technologies and systems) and other facilities and services open or provided to the public, in both urban and rural areas.

45. We commit ourselves to developing vibrant, sustainable and inclusive urban economies, building on endogenous potential, competitive advantages, cultural heritage and local resources, as well as resource-efficient and resilient infrastructure, promoting sustainable and inclusive industrial development and sustainable consumption and production patterns and fostering an enabling environment for businesses and innovation, as well as livelihoods.

46. We commit ourselves to promoting the role of affordable and sustainable housing and housing finance, including social habitat production, in economic development, and the contribution of the sector to stimulating productivity in other economic sectors, recognizing that housing enhances capital formation, income, employment generation and savings and can contribute to driving sustainable and inclusive economic transformation at the national, subnational and local levels.

50. We commit ourselves to encouraging urban-rural interactions and connectivity by strengthening sustainable transport and mobility, and technology and communications networks and infrastructure, underpinned by planning instruments based on an integrated urban and territorial approach, in order to maximize the potential of these sectors for enhanced productivity, social, economic and territorial cohesion, as well as safety and environmental sustainability. This should include connectivity between cities and their surroundings, peri-urban and rural areas, as well as greater land-sea connections, where appropriate.

52. We encourage spatial development strategies that take into account, as appropriate, the need to guide urban extension, prioritizing urban renewal by planning for the provision of accessible and well-connected infrastructure and services, sustainable population densities and compact design and integration of new neighbourhoods into the urban fabric, preventing urban sprawl and marginalization.

53. We commit ourselves to promoting safe, inclusive, accessible, green and quality public spaces as drivers of social and economic development, in order to sustainably leverage their potential to generate increased social and economic value, including property value, and to facilitate business and public and private investments and livelihood opportunities for all.

63. We recognize that cities and human settlements face unprecedented threats from unsustainable consumption and production patterns, loss of biodiversity, pressure on ecosystems, pollution, natural and human-made disasters, and climate change and its related risks, undermining the efforts to end poverty in all its forms and dimensions and to achieve sustainable development. Given cities’ demographic trends and their central role in the global economy, in the mitigation and adaptation efforts related to climate change, and in the use of resources and ecosystems, the way they are planned, financed, developed, built, governed and managed has a direct impact on sustainability and resilience well beyond urban boundaries.

64. We also recognize that urban centres worldwide, especially in developing countries, often have characteristics that make them and their inhabitants especially vulnerable to the adverse impacts of climate change and other natural and human-made hazards, including earthquakes, extreme weather events, flooding, subsidence, storms, including dust and sand storms, heatwaves, water scarcity, droughts, water and air pollution, vector-borne diseases and sea level rise, which particularly affect coastal areas, delta regions and small island developing States, among others.

67. We commit ourselves to promoting the creation and maintenance of well-connected and well-distributed networks of open, multipurpose, safe, inclusive, accessible, green and quality public spaces, to improving the resilience of cities to disasters and climate change, including floods, drought risks and heatwaves, to improving food security and nutrition, physical and mental health, and household and ambient air quality, to reducing noise and promoting attractive and liveable cities, human settlements and urban landscapes and to prioritizing the conservation of endemic species.

76. We commit ourselves to making sustainable use of natural resources and focusing on the resource efficiency of raw and construction materials such as concrete, metals, wood, minerals and land. We commit ourselves to establishing safe material recovery and recycling facilities, promoting the development of sustainable and resilient buildings and prioritizing the use of local, non-toxic and recycled materials and lead-additive-free paints and coatings.

82. We invite international and regional organizations and bodies, including those of the United Nations system and multilateral environmental agreements, development partners, international and multilateral financial institutions, regional development banks, the private sector and other stakeholders, to enhance coordination of their urban and rural development strategies and programmes to apply an integrated approach to sustainable urbanization, mainstreaming the implementation of the New Urban Agenda.

94. We will implement integrated planning that aims to balance short-term needs with the long-term desired outcomes of a competitive economy, high quality of life and sustainable environment. We will also strive to build flexibility into our plans in order to adjust to changing social and economic conditions over time. We will implement and systematically evaluate these plans, while making efforts to leverage innovations in technology and to produce a better living environment.

100. We will support the provision of well-designed networks of safe, accessible, green and quality streets and other public spaces that are accessible to all and free from crime and violence, including sexual harassment and gender-based violence, considering the human scale, and measures that allow for the best possible commercial use of street-level floors, fostering both formal and informal local markets and commerce, as well as not-for-profit community initiatives, bringing people into public spaces and promoting walkability and cycling with the goal of improving health and well-being.

106. We will promote housing policies based on the principles of social inclusion, economic effectiveness and environmental protection. We will support the effective use of public resources for affordable and sustainable housing, including land in central and consolidated areas of cities with adequate infrastructure, and encourage mixed-income development to promote social inclusion and cohesion.

107. We will encourage the development of policies, tools, mechanisms and financing models that promote access to a wide range of affordable, sustainable housing options, including rental and other tenure options, as well as cooperative solutions such as co-housing, community land trusts and other forms of collective tenure that would address the evolving needs of persons and communities, in order to improve the supply of housing (especially for low-income groups), prevent segregation and arbitrary forced evictions and displacements and provide dignified and adequate reallocation. This will include support to incremental housing and self-build schemes, with special attention to programmes for upgrading slums and informal settlements.

112. We will promote the implementation of sustainable urban development programmes with housing and people’s needs at the centre of the strategy, prioritizing well-located and well-distributed housing schemes in order to avoid peripheral and isolated mass housing developments detached from urban systems, regardless of the social and economic segment for which they are developed, and providing solutions for the housing needs of low-income groups.

NUA Principals

14. To achieve our vision, we resolve to adopt a New Urban Agenda guided by the following interlinked principles:
(a) Leave no one behind, by ending poverty in all its forms and dimensions, including the eradication of extreme poverty, by ensuring equal rights and opportunities, socioeconomic and cultural diversity, and integration in the urban space, by enhancing liveability, education, food security and nutrition, health and well-being, including by ending the epidemics of AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria, by promoting safety and eliminating discrimination and all forms of violence, by ensuring public participation — providing safe and equal access for all, and by providing equal access for all to physical and social infrastructure and basic services, as well as adequate and affordable housing;
(c) Ensure environmental sustainability by promoting clean energy and sustainable use of land and resources in urban development, by protecting ecosystems and biodiversity, including adopting healthy lifestyles in harmony with nature, by promoting sustainable consumption and production patterns, by building urban resilience, by reducing disaster risks and by mitigating and adapting to climate change.

15. We commit ourselves to working towards an urban paradigm shift for a New Urban Agenda that will:

  • (a) Readdress the way we plan, finance, develop, govern and manage cities and human settlements, recognizing sustainable urban and territorial development as essential to the achievement of sustainable development and prosperity for all;
  • (b) Recognize the leading role of national Governments, as appropriate, in the definition and implementation of inclusive and effective urban policies and legislation for sustainable urban development, and the equally important contributions of subnational and local governments, as well as civil society and other relevant stakeholders, in a transparent and accountable manner;
  • (c) Adopt sustainable, people-centred, age-and gender-responsive and integrated approaches to urban and territorial development by implementing policies, strategies, capacity development and actions at all levels, based on fundamental drivers of change, including:
  •       (i) Developing and implementing urban policies at the appropriate level, including in local-national and multi-stakeholder partnerships, building integrated systems of cities and human settlements and promoting cooperation among all levels of government to enable the achievement of sustainable integrated urban development;
  •       (ii) Strengthening urban governance, with sound institutions and mechanisms that empower and include urban stakeholders, as well as appropriate checks and balances, providing predictability and coherence in urban development plans to enable social inclusion, sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth and environmental protection

SDG11: Sustainable Cities & Communities

NUA Vision

13. We envisage cities and human settlements that:

  • (a) Fulfil their social function, including the social and ecological function of land, with a view to progressively achieving the full realization of the right to adequate housing as a component of the right to an adequate standard of living, without discrimination, universal access to safe and affordable drinking water and sanitation, as well as equal access for all to public goods and quality services in areas such as food security and nutrition, health, education, infrastructure, mobility and transportation, energy, air quality and livelihoods;
  • (b) Are participatory, promote civic engagement, engender a sense of belonging and ownership among all their inhabitants, prioritize safe, inclusive, accessible, green and quality public spaces that are friendly for families, enhance social and intergenerational interactions, cultural expressions and political participation, as appropriate, and foster social cohesion, inclusion and safety in peaceful and pluralistic societies, where the needs of all inhabitants are met, recognizing the specific needs of those in vulnerable situations;
  • (d) Meet the challenges and opportunities of present and future sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, leveraging urbanization for structural transformation, high productivity, value-added activities and resource efficiency, harnessing local economies and taking note of the contribution of the informal economy while supporting a sustainable transition to the formal economy;
  • (e) Fulfil their territorial functions across administrative boundaries and act as hubs and drivers for balanced, sustainable and integrated urban and territorial development at all levels;
  • (f) Promote age-and gender-responsive planning and investment for sustainable, safe and accessible urban mobility for all and resource-efficient transport systems for passengers and freight, effectively linking people, places, goods, services and economic opportunities
  • (g) Adopt and implement disaster risk reduction and management, reduce vulnerability, build resilience and responsiveness to natural and human-made hazards and foster mitigation of and adaptation to climate change;