The seventh UN-HABITAT World Urban Forum will be held April 5-11, 2014 in Medellín, Colombia. EMBARQ will host a side event that focuses on the potential for urban design to make cities safer and more inclusive for all citizens.

To register: Those who wish can register online

Contact: Ben Welle, Senior Associate for Health and Road Safety, and Robin King, Director of Urban Development and Accessibility. 

Cities Safer by Design For All

Traffic fatalities account for nearly 1.3 million annual deaths, with over 90% of global traffic deaths in low and middle-income countries, and major equity issues associated with the problem. With roughly about half of traffic fatalities occurring in cities, the majority of these deaths are vulnerable road users – pedestrians and bicyclists that are usually the result of inequitable policies and conditions that prioritizes motor vehicles. People from lower socioeconomic backgrounds are also more likely to be involved in a road traffic crashes than their more affluent counterparts, according to the WHO. In addition, road crashes are also the leading cause of death among young people ages 15-29, and the second leading cause of death worldwide among young people ages 5-14. Lastly, older pedestrians and cyclists have shown to account for up to 45 percent of pedestrian fatalities and up to 70 percent of cyclist fatalities.

This networking event will present the work of EMBARQ and its partners from around the globe on creating Cities Safer by Design for all citizens -- the poor, vulnerable, children, the elderly, and both men and women. The event will discuss ways urban development -- both new and existing in terms of new housing developments, planned cities, existing urban areas, master plans and policies.

Several experts from the EMBARQ, including from Mexico, Brazil and India will provide insights and experiences into this work and network with participants on opportunities and challenges in shaping safe cities for all residents and visitors, as well as how these relate to development goals, equity and a better urban future as the conference theme addresses. Examples of best practices, principles, key research on the traffic safety and health problem facing cities globally will be discussed. A report on the topic being prepared by EMBARQ will be available at the event.