Global Lab on Metropolitan Strategic Planning - 1st Metropolitan Exchange Organized with the Regional Plan Association

      1st Metropolitan Exchange Organized with the Regional Plan Association

    April 19 to 25, 2013

    New York City, USA







    The  launch of the Global Lab on Metropolitan Strategic Planning was held from April 19 to 25, 2013. The Lab seeks to establish a community of practice on metropolitan strategic planning and will build on the insight of reference case studies, including the 4th regional plan of New York whose preparation was launched as part of the Regional Planning Association’s (RPA) 23rd Annual Assembly. Ten city delegations (Accra, Dar Es Salaam, Nairobi, Addis Ababa, Ho Chi Minh City, Karachi, Kathmandu, Mumbai, Rio de Janeiro and Mexico City) from four different regions (AFR, EAP, SAR and LAC) participated.


    RPA’s 23rd Annual Regional Assembly (, “A Resilient Region”, provided an opportunity for participants to debate approaches on economic development, transportation, housing, land use and the environment and examined pressing challenges, such as climate change, economic development and fiscal environment. The Assembly also provided an opportunity to launch the Global Lab on Metropolitan Strategic Planning during the session on “World Cities”.


    The launch of the Lab featured customized roundtables, field visits, and most importantly, peer-to-peer discussions on specific metropolitan planning issues facing global and emerging cities. The activities were designed around the participating cities’ needs and aspirations.


    Please take a look at the interactive agenda below which includes links to the presentations.


    Additional Links

    Detailed Site Visit Descriptions         Agenda   

    Participant List          Photo Album






    Global Lab on Metropolitan Strategic Planning


    1st Metropolitan Exchange Organized with the Regional Plan Association


    (Version – April 6, 2013)





    Saturday, April 20: Metropolitan Strategic Planning -  Approaches, Systems and Framework




    8:00 – 9:00am        Breakfast (Venue: JP Morgan Building)


    9:00 – 9:10             Convene for the Working Session:


                                      Robert Yaro, President, Regional Plan Association                                  


    9:10 – 9:20             Presentation of the Global Learning Lab--Goal and Objectives


    Christine Kessides, Manager, Urban Practice, World Bank Institute


    Robert Yaro, President, Regional Plan Association


    9:20 - 10:00             City introductions




    10:15 -11:30          “Regional Plan Association: History and  Approach to Metropolitan Strategic Planning”


    Robert Yaro, President, Regional Plan Association


    This session will discuss the history of the Regional Plan Association and the success of its approach for metropolitan strategic planning. A key focus of this strategy is the development of regional  plans covering the New York, Connecticut and New Jersey metropolitan area.  It will highlight milestone land development and infrastructure projects that were implemented as part of the first three regional plans in 1929, 1968 and 1996.  It will conclude with an overview of the major challenges —climate change, declining economic opportunity and fiscal uncertainty-- facing the New York metropolitan area today, which will drive the development of the upcoming Fourth Regional Plan.


    11:30 -12:15pm     Discussion


    1:15 - 2:00                Lunch Time Presentation on Resiliency by:


                                        Martin Powell, Head of Urban Development, Siemens


                                        Stephen Cook, Project  Director, Arup



    2:00 – 2:30               Continue City Introductions


      • Mexico City
      • Rio de Janeiro
      • Sao Paolo


    2:30 – 3:30             Global Metropolitan Systems and Framework


    Greg Clark, Co-Chair, Global Lab: Metropolitan Strategic Planning”


    This session will discuss world-wide practices in metropolitan strategic planning.  It will provide participants with an overview of  metropolitan issues and explores how the strategic planning process can address these issues by focusing on the dynamics between strategic planning, governance and implementation in metropolitan areas. It will also present a rationale for the need for metropolitan action; discuss why metropolitan strategic planning is needed; and explore which are the most relevant implementation and governance models.


    Nicolas Ronderos, New York Director, Regional Plan Association: Models of International Metropolitan Governance – Case Studies & Recommendations


    This session will examine different models of metropolitan governance, and provide examples of inter-jurisdictional coordination arrangements that have worked in different countries. These examples will be brought into the context of participating cities to serve as basis for exploring frameworks for effective regional governance.


    3:00 -  3:45               Discussion



    4:00 – 4:40               Continue City Introductions


      • Accra
      • Dar El Salaam
      • Nairobi
      • Addis Ababa


    4:40- 5:30                 Summary and Reflection on Day’s Event






    Sunday, April 21: City-to-City Exchanges with Resource Persons (RPs)



    9:00 – 9:10             Convene for Working Session


    9:10 – 9:30              Overview of Integrated Strategic Planning


                                      Moderator: Greg Clark


                                     This introductory session on integrated strategic planning provides the backdrop for the subsequent discussions on specific thematic issues, identified as key priority areas by participating cities, namely: transportation, resiliency, urban redevelopment and solid waste management. Each of the thematic discussions will consist of three parts: (a)overview of  key challenges, (b) city presentations, and (c) facilitated discussion with resource persons.


    9:30 – 10:45            Theme 1: Metropolitan Transportation Planning and Management


    The  challenges of urban transport planning and management-- severe congestion, deteriorating air quality, energy sustainability, and safety--are rendered more complex in a metropolitan, multi-jurisdictional context. Transport planning and management  involves the consideration of a variety of factors such as technology, affordability, local culture, environmental issues, financing, energy use, and impacts on special populations at a metropolitan scale. This session will enable participants to exchange knowledge and experience on key transportation issues affecting their cities, including the linkages with land use, and the need to incorporate institutional arrangements and ensure financial sustainability.


    10:45-11:00             Break


    11:00-12:15            Theme 2: Urban Resilience and Adaptation to Climate Change


    Natural disasters, climate change and increased variability are already affecting many urban areas and will continue to do so in the coming decades.  The response require more resilient infrastructure, broader disaster relief and preparedness measures, regulations that support energy efficient buildings and communities, and new technologies and practices to counter increased climate risks.  Building urban resiliency and climate-smart cities for the future needs to be integrated throughout national, sectoral, regional, metropolitan and local planning processes. Participants will exchange experiences on policies and strategies on urban resiliency, including institutional arrangement and cross-sectoral coordination; participatory processes and community involvement; financial instruments; risk and vulnerability assessment; tools and new technologies.



    1:30 –2:45              Theme 3: Urban Redevelopment


                                     This session will look urban redevelopment issues and challenges at a metropolitan or inter-jurisdictional scale.  These will include legislative, policy and inter-jurisdictional reforms aimed at promoting urban redevelopment and economic growth, real estate and housing development, urban design, historic conservation and neighborhood revitalization, re-use of brownfield sites to improve economic development, and public-private partnerships.


    2:45-4:00                Theme 4: Sustainable Solid Waste Management


    Lead Resource Persons: Stephen Hammer, Lead Urban Specialist,     World Bank with Elizabeth Balkan, Senior Policy Advisor, New York City Mayor’s Office.


                                     This session will look at the following solid waste management issues:  systems development (collection, transport/transfer, disposal, recycling, incineration); regulation (institutional development, monitoring and enforcement, promoting regional and inter-municipal cooperation, improving legal frameworks); planning in the short, medium and long-term; improving data collection and analysis; financing  and PPPs.



    4:15 – 5:30            Learning from Experience: Metropolitan Planning Process


    During this session, the cities of Sao Paolo, Mexico, Mumbai and Seoul will   share the narrative of their metropolitan planning efforts, highlighting  the lessons learned, new challenges and opportunities, and their vision for the future.


    5:30 – 6:00               Summary and Reflection on Day’s Event





    Monday, April 22:



    9:00 – 9:45              Metropolitan Financing




    Nicolas Ronderos, New York, Director, RPA  and another speaker to be    confirmed


    This session will discuss  fiscal incentives for metropolitan-level (inter-jurisdictional) infrastructure investment and land development.  It will identify  the conditions for public-private partnership in the financing of metropolitan scale projects   (e.g., how do private and private interest align?). Specifically on project finance, it will discuss the  risk and return expectations and investment structures for innovative project finance, and how these differ from previous approaches. It will identify  preferred sectors for private investment and discuss how capital markets influence investment decision and what is at stake for the NY region. 


    9:45 -10:30             Systems and Data for Metropolitan Strategic Planning


                                     Speaker: Stephen Hammer, Lead Urban Specialist, World Bank


                                      Demonstration by the New York City Mayor’s Geek Squad


       This session discusses how cities can systematically collect and harness the power of data to make smarter and more informed decisions.  This is especially important in the metropolitan context where data and open sharing of data across cities can also enable benchmarking; improves performance; and promotes accountability.



    10:45-11:30            Communities of Practice: Learning from Mega Disasters and      Communities of Practice


                                  Speaker: Federica Rangheiri, Senior Urban Specialist, World Bank


    This session will provide an overview of WBI’s program,Learning from Mega Disasters: A Program of Knowledge Sharing and Knowledge Exchange,” which is helping Japan share its lessons from disaster risk management and reconstruction with the rest of the world. An important component of this program was the creation of a community of practice (CoP) which plays an invaluable role in sustaining this engagement. The session will discuss the features that have made this CoP successful, and draw lessons for the CoP to be created under the Global Lab. Participating cities will be encouraged to share their views on the design of the Global Lab CoP.


    12:00 – 12:30         Introduction to Site Visits


                                      Speaker: Nicolas Ronderos, New York Director, RPA


    12:30 – 1:00            Summary and Reflection on the Day’s Event




    Structured Site Visits




    Tuesday, April 23


    Urban Redevelopment – Sustainable Communities Initiative Project




    Description: Through a competitive federal grant process the NY-CT Sustainable Communities Initiative (SCI) has launched and unprecedented effort between communities in the Lower Hudson Valley, Southwestern Connecticut, Long Island and New York City to coordinate development of transportation, environmental and development projects. This site visit will discuss the inter-jurisdictional coordination project and visit the East New York inner city redevelopment area.



    Host: NY City Department of City Planning.


    Site: East New York.



    10:00 – 12:00pm                   Site Visit Briefing (length of briefing can be adjusted)


                                                       Speaker: Winston Von Engel, NYC DCP Brooklyn Deputy Director


    12:00                                         Pick-up at Lexington Hotel


    1:00                                            Arrive at East New York / Broadway Junction Subway Station (Van Sinderen Ave /between Fulton St. and Truxtson St.)


    1:00 - 4:00                                Site Visit


    4:00                                            Return to Lexington Hotel






    Wednesday, April 24


    Resiliency - Regional Response to Hurricane Sandy




    Description: The impact of Hurricane Sandy has devastated communities in the NY region and shown the need to address climate change through planning for resiliency. This site visit will discuss the response by the government and philanthropic community in New Jersey to address the impact of this disaster for Long Branch, NJ.


    Host: City of Long Branch


    Site: Long Branch



    10:00 – 12:00pm                   Site Visit Briefing (length of briefing can be adjusted)


                                                        Speaker: Pratap Talwar, Consultant Planner City of Long Branch


    12:00                                         Pick-up at Lexington Hotel


    1:30 Arrive at Long Branch, NJ / 344 Broadway, Long Branch, NJ


    2:00 - 4:00                                Site Visit


    4:00                                            Return to Lexington Hotel






    Thursday, April 25


    Transportation - Penn Station Project


    Description: The expansion of the area known as the Hudson Yards has catalyzed a development process in which new real estate development and new transportation infrastructure projects are being planned for the area. This site visit will discuss plans for expansion of Penn Station through the Moynihan Station project and how it relates to expansion of the Manhattan central business district.


    Host: Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.


    Site: Penn Station/Moynihan Station.




    8:00 – 9:00                               Site Visit Briefing


        Speaker: Michael Evans, Acting President, Moynihan Station    Development Corporation


    9:15                                            Pick-up at Lexington Hotel


    10:00                                         Arrive at Moynihan Station / 421 8th Ave, New York


    10:00 - 11:30pm                    Site Visit


    12:30                                         Arrive at Center for Global Affairs (CGA) NYU Woolworth Building / 233 Broadway, New York


    12:30 – 1:30                            Lunch in CGA – NYU


    1:30 - 2:30                                General reflections on site visits and thematic discussion         


    2:30 – 4:00                               Next Steps  - Suggestions by each city and teams of Cities


    4:00 – 4:30                              Closing Remarks:



      1. Victor Vergara, WBI, Urban Development &Resilience Unit,     World Bank


      2. Nicolas Ronderos, Director, Regional Plan Association


      3. Representative of Participants 



    4:30                                            Return to Hotel


    6:30 – 9:00                               Closing Dinner hosted by the World Bank