On October 28th, Alan Broadbent led a discussion about the place of cities in Canada. Alan’s presentation focused on the major themes in his book: Urban Nation: Why we need to give power back to the cities to make Canada strong.
The book lays out an argument centred on the vision that we must revitalize our commitment to our urban centres, giving them more control over money and decisions. Why? City-level government is the body citizens encounter most regularly and the one that most influences their lives. Cities generate a disproportionate amount of the country’s wealth and are home to the vast majority of Canada’s populace, yet they are hamstrung by a lack of financial and governing clout with which to exercise any real control of their destinies. The result is crumbling cities and disaffected residents who quickly realize municipal government – or any government for that matter – cannot or will not listen to them.
Alan makes a clear case for creating cities as a powerful order of government, with greater autonomy to meet the needs of their population. In order to do that, cities need an equal seat alongside their federal and provincial counterparts at the governing table.
In addition to this long-term vision, he makes a number of recommendations to the federal government. These include supports in the area of housing, transportation and immigration.
Find out more about Urban Nation: Why We Need to Give Power Back to the Cities to Make Canada Strong.