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Ideas + Action 2024: The Future of Cities


Ideas + Action, May 30, 2024 at The Commonwealth Club in San Francisco


Ideas + Action 2024: The Future of Cities

Thursday, May 30, 2024
The Commonwealth Club, San Francisco

Cities are not just places. They are hubs for creativity, economic innovation, social connections, and cultural and racial diversity. Today, Bay Area cities stand at a crossroads: What does the future of work look like, and how will it shape our downtowns and suburbs? Can we grow sustainably and equitably with access to economic opportunity for all? How should transit evolve to better serve emerging travel patterns? How are we poised to meet the challenges of climate change, including extreme climate events?

As urbanists, we have an opportunity to reshape our landscape to address these big questions. How do we get it right?

Join us for this half-day symposium as we discuss the future of cities where we all can thrive. Just announced: renowned urbanist Jennifer Keesmaat joins us as the keynote speaker!

Sponsorships available!
Tickets are reserved for sponsors and invited guests.





  • Jennifer Keesmaat / President and CEO, Collecdev-Markee; Former Chief City Planner, City of Toronto


More information coming soon!

3 p.m. | BREAK


Join one of the following roundtable discussions with thought leaders from around the Bay Area to find common ground, accelerate action-oriented thinking and tackle some of the biggest challenges facing planning in the region:

Breakout session topics include:

Growing the Right Way: Over the next 50 years, the San Francisco Bay Area will gain as many as 4 million people and 2 million jobs. Can we create communities that are affordable, racially inclusive, and sustainable in existing places or do we need to start over with new towns?

Downtown Transformations: Navigate the evolving landscape of downtown areas in response to the paradigm shift brought about by hybrid work models. How should we design and plan for downtowns to evolve into more equitable and resilient places where everyone can thrive

Inclusive Public Spaces: Develop strategies to create inclusive and dynamic public spaces in urban communities that foster social cohesion.

Climate Resilience: Tackle the challenge of planning for extreme climate events. Hear from experts on resilient urban planning and discover actionable steps to ready our communities for climate change, especially vulnerable low-income neighborhoods.

Emerging Technologies: Explore what it would take to make cutting-edge technologies in green building, sustainable transportation, and lower-cost construction work for the Bay Area and advance our equity and sustainability goals.

*The breakout sessions are limited to sponsors and invited guests and subject to change

5 p.m. | RECEPTION

Continue the conversation over drinks.

Keynote Speaker: Jennifer Keesmaat

President and CEO, Collecdev-Markee; Former Chief City Planner, City of Toronto

Jennifer Keesmaat is an urban planner named one of the “most powerful people in Canada” by Macleans, one of the “most influential” by Toronto Life, and one of the top Women of Influence in Canada. She spent half a decade as Toronto’s Chief City Planner, where she was celebrated for her forward thinking and collaborative approach to city-building. Keesmaat is President and CEO of Collecdev-Markee, developing new communities across the GTA as sustainable, liveable places that prioritize access to high quality, affordable housing. A Distinguished Visitor in Residence Emeritus at the University of Toronto, Keesmaat continues to share her vision for cities of the future, through her WEBBY Award-winning podcast, Invisible City. Keesmaat is the Chief Architect of the 2020 Declaration for Resilience in Canadian Cities, which is a blueprint for adapting cities post Covid19 that has been adopted by cities around the world. Keesmaat is on the Advisory Board of the Urban Land Institute, Toronto, and is appointed to the International Panel of Experts, Singapore Urban Redevelopment Authority. Jennifer is on the Board of Directors for May Mobility, and is on the President’s Planning and Growth Advisory Board and Design Review Panel for Ohio State University. Jennifer is recognized as one of the 100 most influential urbanists of all time, by Planetizen Magazine.


Sponsorship benefits matrix

Yes, I want to sponsor Ideas + Action!

For more information about sponsoring Ideas + Action 2024: The Future of Cities, please email Jackie Curran at [email protected].


Refund Policy

Sponsorship payments: Will not be refunded, as sponsorship benefits take effect immediately and are on-going through the date of the event.

Auxiliary Services

If, in order to participate in a SPUR event, you need auxiliary aids or services for a disability (e.g., qualified interpreter, qualified reader, written materials, taped texts) please submit your request five business days before the event to [email protected] or 415-781-8726 x132. SPUR will work with you in identifying effective auxiliary aids or services that it can provide. If you need to cancel your request, please notify SPUR at least two business days before the event.