FCM and Maytree announce The Urban Project: A forum for Canada’s big cities

The Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) and Maytree are proud to announce that, on Friday, November 16th, a new initiative designed to tackle the challenges facing our big cities will launch.

Across Canada and around the world, cities are on the front lines of the most complex challenges of 21st century life: from immigration and affordable housing, to the need for new infrastructure and adapting to advances in technology.

Canada’s cities are also operating in a modern reality that has evolved, which means city leaders must think about developing and delivering policy differently.

To meet these new conditions and build the 21st century cities Canadians expect, the best and brightest need to lead. Yet too often, they are confined to sectors and siloes – caught up in battles of jurisdiction instead of working together.

Enter The Urban Project: dynamic new initiative designed to break down the walls that currently exist between all orders of government, civil society, the private sector, and academia.

“Canada is home to world-leading experts on building healthy, vibrant cities – but we need to be better at connecting those experts,” said Brock Carlton, CEO of FCM. “With The Urban Project, we’re building a platform where municipal leaders feel empowered, better tools are developed to address increasingly pressing challenges, and fresh perspectives are generated from all corners of city life.”

The touchstones of The Urban Project are a series of events over three years covering a number of pressing urban issues, such as housing, the opioid crisis, transformative transit, and more. Each event will generate bold new ideas, stress test policy and governance structures, showcase best practices from across the country and challenge participants to push the boundaries of what Canada’s big cities can achieve.

“We believe that this project will illuminate the important role that large cities play in creating prosperity for Canadians,” said Alan Broadbent, Chair of Maytree. “The Urban Project is going to generate new models of innovative policymaking and citybuilding to create breakthroughs to our urban challenges.”

The Urban Project will begin at its inaugural gathering in Edmonton, Alberta. The launch event will feature Mayor Don Iveson alongside other Canadian big city mayors, as well as noted urbanists Richard Florida and Mary Rowe. The Urban Project is co-founded by FCM and Maytree, with support from TD Bank Group, The Metcalf Foundation, and in participation with the University of Toronto School of Cities and the Institute for Municipal Governance and Finance.

Media inquiries: media@fcm.ca