(L to R) Erastus Ndugire, Office of the Executive Director at UN-Habitat; Oliver Schaper, Cities & Urban Design Practice Leader and Principal at Gensler; Neil Khor, Programme Director of the Cities Investment Facility; Urwa Shahid, Office of the Executive Director at UN-Habitat; Mark Gallagher, Office of the Executive Director at UN-Habitat
A group of people holding a certificate.
July 25, 2022

Gensler Partners with UN-Habitat on the Cities Investment Advisory Platform

Gensler signs commitment to help the United Nations advance sustainable development and financing, and provide support for projects in the Cities Investment Facility pipeline

NEW YORK — At the Eleventh Session of the World Urban Forum held in Katowice, Poland, global architecture, design, and planning firm Gensler joined stakeholders and partners to support the United Nations Human Settlements Programme, UN-Habitat, in its effort to address the rapid urbanization of the world’s most underdeveloped cities.

In April 2022, UN-Habitat and the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) joined hands to strengthen The Cities Investment Facility (CIF), which aims to unlock institutional and commercial capital to finance sustainable and masterplan-integrated municipal development projects. As part of the CIF, the Cities Investment Advisory Platform (CIAP) bridges the gap between the conceptualization of urban infrastructure projects and investor requirements, as well as provides advice to projects procured by UN-Habitat and its partners.

In its commitment to the CIF and CIAP, Gensler will respond to requests for advisory services through a pool of resources that includes professional design and planning expertise, research, and community impact initiatives. The firm advises on such requests regarding design and planning, as well as certain input on technical feasibility in relation to the physical built environment. Gensler will also support CIF fundraising activities through its global network of relationships with investors, developers, and consultants in the private and public sectors to raise awareness of critical projects on a case-by-case basis.

“Our experience across a broad spectrum of urban design, healthcare, housing, and mobility projects allows us to plan for what’s next, not just for what’s now,” says Oliver Schaper, Cities & Urban Design Resilience Leader and Principal at Gensler. “In all of our work, we aim to impart positive impact and ultimately drive healthier, wiser, and more equitable communities.”

“We are behind our targets to reach the 2030 Global Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals. To achieve progress and accelerate change, we need urgent local action,” said Neil Khor, Programme Director of the Cities Investment Facility. “Cities can benefit from access to financial and advisory services to develop impactful projects and deliver the much-needed change.”

About the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat)
UN-Habitat is the United Nations agency for human settlements. It has programs in over 90 countries that support people in cities and human settlements and focus on socially and environmentally sustainable cities and towns.

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