The fundamental goal of city design must be to improve the lives of people. That means the creation of fulfilling, enriching, and sustainable ways for residents to live, work, and play. How one Asian developer is using planning and technology to make cities work for people.

Today, almost half of Asia’s population lives in cities. By 2050, the United Nations projects almost two-thirds of the world’s population will live in cities, as more rural dwellers migrate to urban areas. Rapid urbanization puts more pressure on land, making it important for each square meter to be used effectively. At the same time, quality-of-life issues, such as traffic congestion and air pollution, must be considered from the start.

The modern, efficient cities of the future, then, will connect transportation hubs with quality retail, hospitality, commercial, and residential spaces. Such integrated developments will enable populations to flourish both economically and socially. Think of them as new-age high-rise villages.

CapitaLand’s Raffles City developments are an example of this thinking. Built around the concept of a “city within a city,” they integrate shopping malls, offices, serviced residences and hotels, and homes. The first Raffles City development opened in Singapore 30 years ago; CapitaLand is now working on eight more in China. Each is located in a city center and connected to transport. Designed to high architectural standards, we believe that these developments will not only become symbols of economic transformation but also become important social spaces.

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