We shared a vision for sustainable and inclusive cities of the future. We worked together because working alone was not the answer.
Future Cities Canada was created to build off the innovative work happening in cities and improve cross-sectoral collaboration across the country. As a network of partners, we launched a number of programs to address issues that many communities face: the need for more community-level climate action, housing, shared mobility alternatives, Indigenous inclusion in city-building, resources for rural and remote communities, and digital competencies. This work lives on at Evergreen through our projects, events and partnerships.
Our group of founding partners is comprised of Evergreen, the McConnell Foundation, Maison de l’innovation sociale, TD Bank Group and the Community Foundations of Canada. Later, Infrastructure Canada, the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation and Suncor Energy Foundation joined us with funding support.
The groundwork for Future Cities Canada began in 2015. Evergreen and Cities for People came together for the We Are Cities campaign. We engaged thousands of citizens by asking them to imagine an agenda for the future of our cities and came out of this project with the We Are Cities Action Agenda, a collective expression of the kinds of cities we want. The Agenda was built with the intention of inspiring and catalyzing local and national action, building on efforts already underway.
A subsequent report published in November 2017, Towards a Civic Commons Strategy by Evergreen and the McConnell Foundation, revealed the need for collaborative infrastructure to catalyze inclusive innovation in our cities.
Through a process of collaboration, we created national-scale programs and projects that resulted in tools, publications, and events that will continue to advance the health and livability of our cities.
In 2018, Evergreen opened the TD Future Cities Centre, an innovative adaptive reuse of a former kiln building at Evergreen Brick Works, to become a space for urban thought leaders and city builders to gather, co-create, test and prototype solutions for building inclusive low-carbon cities of the future. The Centre was home to the Future Cities Canada Summit in 2018 and 2019. Virtual versions of The Summit were held in 2020 and 2021, also under the name #UnexpectedSolutions, and are available to watch online.
The following programs will continue to be stewarded by Evergreen.
We are proud of the legacy of Future Cities Canada projects that we created with our partners. These projects helped us test ideas and create impact. Some of the following projects evolved into the programs we have today:
Future Cities Canada was successful in creating a series of intensive research initiatives to help us distill the key elements to take forward and integrate into our programming. The work and collaborative spirit that began with Future Cities Canada will continue through Evergreen’s work:
TD Future Cities Centre at Evergreen Brick Works