Moscow Urban Forum 2016: Fast-Growing Megacities - Technologies for Dynamic Development

Since its first version in 2011, the Moscow Urban Forum has become an important international platform devoted to the development of megacities, and improvement of the quality of life of urban residents in the world, Moscow and Russia. Over the years, it has developed into a major international project that brings together the people who come up with ideas to improve the quality of urban space, and the people who implement these ideas: mayors, politicians, urbanists, and architects from all over the world.

The topic of the 2016 Forum is "Fast-Growing Megacities: Technologies for Dynamic Development." Why is it so important to discuss growth and development of megacities at this time? What are the rules that determine their existence?

Not every large city can become a megacity. A city may absorb its surrounding areas, but these areas may continue to exist in accordance with their own rules, never merging into a single system with the city. Megacities of the 21st century do not just offer more space in which to work and live. They determine the mindset of the people who live there, expand the boundaries of what's possible, and offer a variety of options for personal fulfillment. They dictate the rules of the game for all other urban settlements and set the trends in the development of modern urbanism.

We have about 40 successful megacities in the world, and there are cities that have a good chance of being added to this list. The experts who will gather at the Moscow Urban Forum 2016 will discuss the challenges that governments and inhabitants of megacities are facing; mayors and urbanists of leading capital cities will share their experience of dealing with challenges. Here are the core items of the agenda:

  • Where does the megacity end and agglomeration begin?
  • What features must a city have to become a megacity?
  • Technological revolution as a consequence of development
  • Safe and comfortable living in megacities

The session speakers will be city mayors and other representatives of the authorities of cities of the world, heads of international companies, successful business people and leading urbanism experts, ie all the people who truly effect change in the world and whose work can be seen by citizens every day.

Forum: Day one – Prospects

The program of the first day is called "Cities In the Age of Technological Revolution." Throughout the day, the seven halls of Manege Central Exhibition Hall and the briefing zone will host sessions devoted to a wide variety of issues:

  • Urban solutions based on advanced technology
  • The role of technology in construction, planning and architecture
  • Management of urban systems, Big Data
  • New transport system
  • New energy and utilities
  • Interaction between citizens, governments and business in the new media environment
  • Transformation of urban services under the impact of technology (trade, finance, catering, health)
  • The development of new industries in the city, raising investment, job creation
  • New-generation culture and media

The day's program includes plenary sessions, involving mayors and hi-tech celebrities, as well as discussions, presentations, briefings and workshops on key technology trends.

Forum: Day two – Practices

The second day of the Forum will be entitled "Cities And Megaprojects. Cities as Megaprojects" and will be dedicated to specific examples which are already implemented in the megacities of the world. We would like to tell you not only about the impressive future of megacities, but also about the projects that are being implemented right now and which we will be able to contemplate in the near future:

  • Leading large-scale projects in Moscow (parks, development, transport)
  • Experience of the largest projects in other countries and cities.
  • Discussions with initiators, architects and investors of major projects.

The conference participants will attend a plenary session with the involvement of M.Sh. Khusnullin, authors and builders of the most significant innovations, presentations of sport, transport and real estate megaprojects and discuss the key concepts for Moscow and other world capitals.


After each Forum, visitors and guests submit feedback and suggestions. In particular, one of the most common has been that it would be nice to have more sessions, but that they shouldn’t be too long. Therefore, at the 2016 Forum, sessions will last 30-45 minutes. Presentations by speakers will be shorter, and the range of topics will be wider. To keep up with the times, Forum guests will deliver short speeches in TED format. In addition, this year the event will feature more workshops, presentations and lectures. Many Forum guests will have the opportunity to participate in the debates and present their views on urbanism issues.

In 2016, there will be numerous areas for informal discussion at the event.

Special Events

When megacities are discussed, the first thing people think about is something global and certainly futuristic. This is why we have prepared two large-scale special projects: A Summit of Global Mega Projects Organisers and The Urban Futurism Conference.

The first project will attract those who make decisions related to Russia’s hosting of major international events such as the Olympics. The speakers will discuss the status of ongoing projects (such as the FIFA World Cup to be held in 2018).

The second day will feature a conference and exhibition of the most daring mega projects of our time, organized in cooperation with the organizing committee of the Venice Architecture Biennale. Examples of the projects of the future include Hyperloop (conversion of Central Park in New York), Zeekracht energy infrastructure, competition for the project of settlement on Mars, and many others.


This year, the Moscow Urban Forum festival, which has become popular with the people of Moscow, will open on the same day as the Forum, on June 30th. The festival venue will not be limited to the Manege building: events will be held at various venues in Moscow — in the streets, in parks, at VDNKh Exhibition Centre, in Dostoevsky Library, in Strelka Creative Space and many other places.

As part of the festival programme, all participants are invited to exhibitions, lectures, workshops, film screenings and other activities that are sure to interest and inspire. The map and schedule of the events will be available at special stands in Manege.

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Cite: "Moscow Urban Forum 2016: Fast-Growing Megacities - Technologies for Dynamic Development" 17 May 2016. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884

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