What will cities look like in the future? Who will live in them? How will people travel between them? These are just some of the questions facing politicians, investors and innovators – people who have the power, motivation and vision to shape their answers. Hundreds of these visionaries and decision-makers will come together at Drexel University’s Behrakis Grand Hall on Nov. 13-14 to continue a dialogue about “the New American City.”
As part of its continuing mission to be a beacon for forward thinkers, Drexel will open its doors to CityAge: The New American City, a gathering that will address a broad spectrum of issues involved with the future of city building. The two-day symposium, whose anticipated attendance includes delegates from more than 40 cities across the United States and abroad, will feature speakers on topics ranging from city planning, transportation and architecture to big data, the arts and environmental resiliency.
“I’m proud to welcome CityAge to Drexel and Philadelphia” said Drexel President John A. Fry. “Universities are a critical thread in the evolving urban fabric, and I’m looking forward to joining leading thinkers and practitioners in a dialogue on making cities work for everyone.”
The event will assemble mayors, business executives, entrepreneurs, engineers, architects and city builders from across America. Their goal is to address the challenges of growing city populations, with the projection that 7 billion people, nearly three-quarters of the world’s population, will live in cities by the year 2050.
“In the years to come, the role of cities, and the challenges they face, will change,” said Philadelphia Mayor Michael A. Nutter. “The CityAge symposium will bring together government leaders and private sector problem solvers to discuss ways to reshape and build cities that are ready for the future.”
Presenters will include Nutter; Paul Levy, CEO of Center City District; Kyle Kimball, president of the New York City Economic Development Corporation; Gail Sussman, managing director of Moody’s Investor Service; Eugenie Birch, professor of urban research at the University of Pennsylvania; Andrew Frank, special advisor to the president on economic development; Stephen Bellairs, a partner at MSR Architecture; Anne Ewers, president and CEO of the Kimmel Center; David Devan, general director and president of Opera Philadelphia; and Rebecca Bagley, President & CEO of NorTech.
Fry and Nutter will participate in a keynote dialogue about how urban universities can be economic and civic assets to their cities via innovation and commercial and civic partnerships.
“As one of the United States’ original cities, with its rich history in urban planning, Philadelphia is a perfect location to look at The New American City,” said Miro Cernetig, CityAge co-founder. “America’s cities — large and small — are evolving quickly and CityAge believes it is where we will find the solutions to the challenges of our urban century.”
Among the slated topics of discussion are the $140-billion high-speed railway that will connect Washington, D.C. with Boston, the responsibility of urban universities to serve as economic catalysts for their cities, the challenge of balancing population growth with environmental sustainability and the best ways to use data and analytics for city planning.
“Eighty percent of Americans live in cities, and their numbers are growing every day,” said Marc Andrew, co-founder of CityAge. “This means that how we build –and rebuild- our cities will shape almost every facet of America’s future.”
CityAge is a platform for dialogue, campaigns and events designed to amplify new ideas in business, government and society. By holding high-level conversations, campaigns and events across North America the group hopes to foster partnerships between business, decision makers and thought leaders who are building the 21st-century's cities.
Philadelphia’s is the ninth installment of the CityAge discussion, which has previously been held in New York, Kansas City, Toronto, Vancouver with scheduled events upcoming in Seattle and London. For more information visit: www.CityAge.org or to register for the summit visit: www.cityage.tv/philadelphia.