Three Aerial Images of Dense City Population Sprawl

Ending Global Sprawl

The health and well-being of humankind depends upon the kind of cities we build in the next two generations.

We now have 4.2 billion people living in cities and that number will increase to 6.7 billion by 2050. Based on our current pattern of global sprawl, this will translate into an 80% expansion of city footprints from 2018 to 2030. The current form of global sprawl deepens spatial inequalities and isolates opportunities for those who need the opportunities of urban life the most; it heightens the costs of infrastructure and social services, and it intensifies the environmental burdens of poor air quality, carbon emissions, and deteriorating ecosystems.  

Urban Standards for Sustainable and Resilient Development

Authored by Peter Calthorpe and published by the World Bank, the book “Ending Global Sprawl: Urban Standards for Sustainable and Resilient Development” seeks to define the global challenges of sprawl and how its various manifestations contribute to social isolation, economic inequality, and environmental degradation. 

About the Book

“Ending Global Sprawl: Urban Standards for Sustainable and Resilient Development” is written by Peter Calthorpe of HDR | Calthorpe Associates for the World Bank’s Global Platform for Sustainable Cities (GPSC).

For more info contact

Kaia Nesbitt
Urban Design, Planning & Landscape Architecture Director
Kaia Nesbitt

Principle 1: Plan for Growth, Resilience and Preservation

Plan for compact growth and resilience while preserving natural ecologies, agrarian landscapes, and cultural heritage sites.

Aerial view of Portland boundary
Central Park Playground in Denver Colorado

Principle 2: Reserve Open Lands and Public Space

Preserve and create parks and open space networks for community use, green connections, ecological systems, and adequate storm mitigation areas.

Principle 3: Enhance Shared Mobility and Transit

Make networks of transit, new forms of shared mobility, and active transport more desirable, affordable and ubiquitous.

Gaungzhou public transit map
Jinan Regional Transit Map

Principle 4: Build Transit-Oriented Developments

Match land-use density and mix to transit capacity in a walkable environment.

Create diverse, mixed-use neighborhoods and districts with integrated affordable housing.

Increase the density of road networks with small blocks and human-scaled streets. 

Prioritize walking and biking with ubiquitous safe, direct and comfortable routes.

Download "Ending Global Sprawl: Urban Standards for Sustainable and Resilient Development"

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