Authorities highlight the importance of integral planning for mobility and housing at ECLAC's technical seminar before the MINURVI General Assembly

Picture of the ECLAC pre-Minurvi Seminar 2023

Picture of the ECLAC pre-Minurvi Seminar 2023

The XXXII MINURVI General Assembly was preceded on the 8th of November 2023 by a meeting in Buenos Aires between local and national authorities called "Towards Inclusive, Sustainable and Smart Cities: A National - Local Dialogue". This dialogue was organised by ECLAC's Sustainable Development and Human Settlements Division, to discuss the articulation between different levels of government in terms of urban policy, highlighting the importance of land, urban operators and joint planning for housing and sustainable mobility.

The event had a hybrid character, with face-to-face attendance in Buenos Aires and live broadcasting from the ECLAC Cities Channel, with more than 700 virtual attendees and more than 60 face-to-face attendees. The Minister of Territorial Development & Habitat of Argentina, Santiago Maggiotti, and the Ambassador of Germany in Argentina, Dieter Lamlé, participated in the opening and closing of the event.

In the field of national governments, the panel discussions included the participation of the Minister of Housing, City and Territory of Colombia, Catalina Velasco, the Minister of Housing, Land and Maintenance of Barbados, Dwight Sutherland, the Vice-Minister of Housing and Human Settlements of Costa Rica, José David Rodriguez Morera, and the National Secretary of Urban and Metropolitan Development of Brazil, Carlos Tomé Junior.

The roundtables were complemented by local government authorities, specifically Mayor Valeria Melipillan of Quilpué (Chile), Mayor Silvana Pissano of Municipality B of Montevideo (Uruguay), Mayor Stella Clerici of Cañada De Gomez (Argentina) and representatives of the administrations of Quito (Ecuador), San José (Costa Rica) and Bogotá (Colombia); as well as multilateral institutions for the financing of development projects (CAF - Development Bank of Latin America and the Caribbean - and IDB).

During the morning, the debates focused on urban development and the co-benefits associated with mobility, especially those linked to land, such as real estate valuation, strategic use of public road land, and congestion and pollution charges. National and local governments discussed based on the cases of Jakarta, presented by Franco Jauregui Fung, from the German Institute of Development and Sustainability, and Bogotá, presented by Claudia Acosta, consultant of the Inclusive, Sustainable and Smart Cities Project in the framework of the 2030 Agenda, of the ECLAC-BMZ/GIZ cooperation programme. The content of the presentations advances the agenda of comparison and exchange of south-south experience between Asia and Latin America in the mobility sector, which should culminate, in 2024, in a joint ECLAC-IDOS publication with six city analyses.

Urban operators, public management, and institutions to benefit from the opportunities of sustainable urban development were the subjects of the first panel of the afternoon, based on the case of the Metropolitan Public Company of Habitat and Housing of Quito, Ecuador, presented by its general manager Cristina Gomezjurado. The final panel, on multi-level and multi-stakeholder articulation for land and housing deficit management, presented the results of studies carried out by ECLAC consultants Marcela Román and Milagros López on the public land bank of Costa Rica and the land management and financing programme of Havana, Cuba, both financed by the United Nations Development Account.

In line with what was subsequently expressed in the Declaration of Buenos Aires of the XXXII MINURVI General Assembly, the event "Towards Inclusive, Sustainable and Smart Cities: A National - Local Dialogue" sought to reinforce the technical aspects of the integrality of urban planning and mobility, through strategies such as Transport Oriented Development and land management. The Sustainable Development and Human Settlements Division will continue to promote the integration between the mobility and housing agendas at all levels of government, recognising it as a fundamental factor for sustainable and inclusive urban development.