East River Waterfront Esplanade ; East River Waterfront Esplanade ;

Cities Alive: In our mission to shape a better world, we must shape better cities

Cities Alive takes a human-centred approach to rethinking how we should design and manage cities in the future. It provides an integrated focus on the experience of cities and the global challenges that are impacting the lives of everyday citizens. We recognise the importance of a city’s inhabitants and we explore the relationships between design, processes, spaces and people. Cities Alive is an invitation to collaboratively shape our urban future.

The thought-provoking series of global research and events explores the social, technological, environmental, economic and political drivers shaping future cities across the globe. 

Designing for urban childhoods

Find out how a child-friendly approach to urban planning is vital for the creation of cities that work better for everyone. In Designing for urban childhoods, we explain how we can create healthier and more inclusive, resilient and competitive cities for all of us to live, work and grow up in.

Whether it is tackling population growth, climate change, air pollution or urbanisation, we are focused on exploring the issues faced by cities, based on stakeholder engagement, evidence, problem solving and research. Current areas of research include the future role and application of green infrastructure, emerging opportunities around lighting and night-time design, and a focus on city walkability.

Water for People

Cities Alive: Water for People presents an economic pathway of addressing the challenges of population growth and climate change in our cities.  To move towards a more sustainable future, it is critical that cities adapt in order to address these contemporary challenges.

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With a collaboration of leading thinkers, investors, lobbyists, solutions providers and policy makers, we bring together broad-minded individuals from a wide range of disciplines. Cities Alive encourages us to look beyond the constraints of our own specialisms and to make a positive difference for people. By combining expertise in all areas of urban design, cities can become more enjoyable, more sociable, safer, healthier and easier to get around.

Green infrastructure

Rethinking green infrastructure

Cities Alive: Rethinking green infrastructure shows how the creation of a linked 'city ecosystem' that encompasses parks and open spaces; urban trees, streets, squares; woodland and waterways can help create healthier, safer and more prosperous cities.

Towards a walking world

Towards a walking world

In our new report, Cities Alive: Towards a walking world, we shine a light on walking, and the impact walkability has on the success of a city. In particular, we highlight the opportunity for cities to embrace walking in response to some of the significant societal, environmental and market challenges they are facing.

Green Buildings

Green Building Envelope

Over time, the human population has become increasingly urban, with city centres becoming more and more densely populated. In these dense city spaces, there is little room for 'green infrastructure' - parks, trees and other green spaces. The impact of this depletion is underestimated, as urbanisation and climate change continue to jeopardise our way of life. Cities Alive: Green Building Envelope, shows how a collaborative team of Arup specialists from across the world, set out to tackle these issues head on.

Host Cities

Rethinking legacy for host cities

Major sporting and leisure events are under scrutiny like never before to deliver long term benefits for their host city, and the citizens within them. Discover how Arup is helping cities to design longer-lasting legacy.

Urban Night Time

Lighting the urban night-time

With darkness accounting for 50% of the world's time, that potential is huge. Well-designed night-time lighting can influence the way you use and enjoy a city, the way you move around its streets and even the way you feel.