Denser, family-friendly and socially inclusive cities

Networking event at the World Urban Forum, Medellin

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How have two mid-sized Mediterranean cities managed to reverse urban decline and become attractive places for young families with children, despite a dense and aging urban environment where almost everyone lives in multi-family apartment buildings? This session examines the stories of the cities of Tel Aviv-Jaffa and Holon, both in Israel, and aims to pull out lessons for other cities facing similar challenges. 

Tel Aviv was one of three finalists in the Wall Street Journal’s ‘Innovative Cities 2013’ (Medellin came first). Over the last twenty years it has transformed from an aging and shrinking city to a vibrant magnet for young families.  Nearby Holon is known as ‘the city for children’, with creative investment in cultural institutions, education and the public realm. Both cities face challenges including remodeling older neighborhoods, retaining affordable housing, and ensuring that the cities provide opportunities to lower-income and diverse populations.

Speakers include city planners and architects instrumental to the transformation of these cities; MK Stav Shaffir, Israel’s youngest parliamentarian and leader of the national social justice protest  movement; and senior national planners. Following the local presentations, we will host a panel discussion with international experts who have visited these cities, and invite participants to share experiences from elsewhere.