The World Bank Urbanscapes Community of Practice

Urbanscapes community aims to foster strong collaboration across different practice areas focused on the challenges of delivering innovative and well-designed urban spaces and places that can serve as catalysts for creating productive, livable, inclusive and vibrant cities.

Members are encouraged to share any ideas and material related to the following:

Public Urban Spaces: the urban spaces within the public realm such as parks, plazas, streets, waterfronts and public buildings;

Urban Fabric and Placemaking: the physical environment and their associated economic and social activities;

Cityscapes: the city through the broader lens of urban planning, urban design and architecture, which contributes to the overall urban environment and systems; and

Streetscapes: the detailed aesthetic and functional design elements of streets and public spaces, including roads, facades, lighting, landscaping, street furniture and pavement etc., that come together to form the character of public spaces


The Hidden Wealth of Cities: Creating, Financing, and Managing Public Spaces

In every city, the urban spaces that form the public realm account for about one-third of the city’s total land area, on average. Despite this significance, the potential for these public-space assets to transform urban life and city functioning is often overlooked for many reasons: other pressing city priorities arising from rapid urbanization, poor urban planning, and financial constraints.

The Hidden Wealth of Cities: Creating, Financing, and Managing Public Spaces discusses the complexities that surround the creation and management of successful public spaces and draws on the analyses and experiences from city case studies from around the globe. This book identifies a rich palette of creative and innovative strategies that every city can undertake to plan, finance, and manage both government-owned and privately owned public spaces.