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UNECE adopts the San Marino Declaration

On 3rd October 2022, governments across the UNECE region attending the 83rd session of the UNECE Committee on Urban Development, Housing and Land Management have signed the San Marino Declaration, committing to bolstering the roles of architects, engineers, surveyors, urban planners and designers in ensuring sustainable, safe, healthy, socially inclusive, climate-neutral and circular homes, urban infrastructure and cities.

UNECE has 56 member States, covering a region of more than 47 million square kilometres. Its member States include the countries of Europe, but also countries in North America (Canada and United States), Central Asia (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan) and Western Asia (Israel). 

Through the San Marino Declaration, governments have agreed on a first-of-its-kind set of “Principles for Sustainable and Inclusive Urban Design and Architecture”, to be applied to the design of all buildings and urban developments. 

This is a great achievement and recognition of the hard work of Mr Norman Foster, world renowned architect and Knight of the Order of St Agatha, that offered his vast architectural expertise, spent a lot of energy and valuable time in drafting and finalising the text of the declaration.

Norman Foster launched the San Marino Declaration of the United Nations and its Principles for Sustainable and Inclusive Urban Design and Architecture in an event that was organised in the Kursaal conference centre of the Republic of San Marino, on the occasion of the 83rd Session of the UNECE Committee on Urban Development, Housing and Land Management. In that event, Mr Foster delivered a keynote speech shared his and his colleagues’ collective experience on issues of master planning and urban design.

He endorsed the important role that the design professions could play in shaping cities in the present future, in addition to the architecture of individual buildings. He also talked about the importance of advocates – from civic leaders, mayors, politicians, governments, city managers and developers – in supporting visionary ideas that can effect transformational change in our towns and cities.