The United Nations has designated the first Monday of October of every year as
World Habitat Day. The purpose of World Habitat Day is to reflect on the
state of our towns and cities, and on the basic right of all to adequate shelter.
It is also intended to remind the world that we all have the power and the
responsibility to shape the future of our cities and towns.


Each year on World Habitat Day, we reflect on the state of human settlements and on what we want the cities of the future to look like.

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Our cities and homes define who we are, in many ways. They determine whether we will have access to education and job opportunities.

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Cities around the world are planning activities and events to celebrate World Habitat Day and World Cities Day
this October. Register your event today to be listed in this page.

  • Africa & Arab States
  • Asia & Pacific
  • Europe & Former Soviet Union States
  • Latin America and the Caribbean
  • Oceania


The Ministry of Housing and Urban Development organized a conference at the Faculty of Architecture, University Agostinho Neto in Luanda on World Habitat Day. The conference gathered the actors of the National Urban Agenda for reflection and debate on the Sustainable Development Goals of the New Urban Agenda, aligned with the National Programme of Urbanisation and Housing. The event had a participation of 200 people.


The Global Observance of World Habitat Day was held on 3 October 2016 in N'Djamena, Chad, in an event organized by UN-Habitat in partnership with the Ministry of Territorial Planning, Housing and Urban Development. The event was held under the theme of World Habitat Day 2016 Housing at the Centre, and included discussions on urbanization of Africa and the New Urban Agenda. The event was officiated by Dr. Clos, Executive Director of UN-Habitat and Secretary General of the Habitat III Conference, and Mr. David Houdeingar, the Honourable Minister of Territorial Planning, Housing and Urban Development. For more information, please read


Habitat III in partnership with the Government of Malawi held and Urban Breakfast on 3 October on Lilongwe. The event which also commemorated World Habitat Day was held under the title Financing Urban Development in the Context of the New Urban Agenda. More than 100 participants attended the event with representation coming from the National Government, UNDP, the World Bank, and Private sector.


The Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing organized an unveiling and ribbon cutting ceremony at a housing development project in celebration of World Habitat Day. The event took place on 3 October under the theme Housing at the Centre. There were approximately 400 participants at the event.



The Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation and UN-Habitat held World Habitat Day national event on 3 October 2016 at Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi under the theme 'Housing at the Centre'. The event was graced by the presence of Minister of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation, Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu, Minister of State of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation, Mr. Rao Inderjit Singh, UN-Habitat Regional Director of Asia and Pacific, Mr. Yoshinobu Fukasawa and UN Resident Coordinator in India, Mr. Yuri Afanasiev. The guests visited the exhibition showcasing India's initiatives in the housing sector, participated in the launch of Habitat III India Report and distributed prizes to the winners of various competitions held on the occasion of World Habitat Day. Mr. Fukasawa and Mr. Afanasiev appreciated the efforts taken by Government of India in promoting affordable housing and sustainable urban development. More than 500 people participated in the event. Please view the launch of the National Report via @YouTube here.

IIMT College of Engineering organized a World Habitat Day event on 3 October 2016 to provide a platform for students to present their innovative ideas through poster making competition on Smart City and applications of Engineering. The program was organized by the Department of Electronics & Communication Engineering.

Amity University Madhya Pradesh organized three events in the city of Gwalior on 3 October 2016 to celebrate World Habitat Day. The events were centered around the theme of Housing at the Centre with the following titles being given to each event: 1) Low cost housing concept presentation 2) Logo designing 3) Model making. The event had 80 participants, for more information please visit

Integral University - Lucknow earmarked 3 October as an important academic event in its academic calendar with a participation of 250 people commemorating World Habitat Day. On this occasion a Seminar on the theme of Built Environment in Changing Cities was organized and presided over by Prof. S. W. Akhtar, the Vice Chancellor of the University, and was graced by the following senior professionals as guests of honour: Mr. M.S. Khan, Chairman - State Environmental Appraisal Committee, G.O.I, Prof. Jagbir Singh, Principal, Faculty of Architecture, APJAKTU, Lucknow and Ar. D.S. Bhui- Sr. Practicing Architect and Urban Designer, Lucknow. The Theme Presentation was made by Ar. Rajat Kant, Sr. Architect and Urban Planner of Lucknow. In addition to this, there were presentations by the students and faculty members of various architecture colleges of Lucknow as well as a panel discussion by senior professionals in the field of Architecture, Town Planning and Civil Engineering on the theme of Built Environment in Changing Cities. The event was coordinated by Prof. Subodh Shankar, Professor and Dean, Faculty of Architecture, Integral University, Lucknow. For more information please visit


Myanmar celebrated this year's World Habitat Day, with the government reaffirming its commitment to make affordable housing a priority. UN-Habitat representatives joined members of communities from a slum area in Hlaing Tharyar Township in Yangon's periphery, who had organised a World Habitat Day whose theme was 'Housing at the Centre' celebration to draw attention to their lives. Visiting guests, which included Members of Parliament, NGOs, and academics, were treated to cultural and traditional dances from the Ayarwaddy Region from where many had migrated in the aftermath of natural disasters. Slum community members spoke of their needs and aspirations, including their biggest issue on the lack of security of shelter. Read more

Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka held the national World Habitat Day 2016 celebration on Housing at the Centre on 3 October in Polonnaruwa District. His Excellency Maithripala Sirisena, the President of Sri Lanka was the Chief Guest at the celebrations. The event, which drew the participation of over 2,000 community members, was organized by the Ministry of Housing and Construction. The highlight of the event was the opening of the Sugaladevi Model Village by His Excellency the President in Dimbulagala DS division in Polonnnaruwa, comprising of 24 permanent houses with infrastructure facilities. At the opening ceremony, His Excellency the President stated that 2017 will be declared as "The Year for Alleviation of Poverty" in Sri Lanka and that the Government will give priority towards addressing housing issues in the country. The Minister of housing and construction stressed the importance of introducing environment friendly housing country-wide. He pledged to find solutions to the housing issues in Polonnaruwa district, commencing with 50 housing projects in 2017. The Deputy Minister of Housing and Construction, the Hon. Indika Bandaranayake, Chief Minister of the North Central Province, Hon. Peshala Jayarathne, State Minister of Irrigation and Water Management, Hon. Wasantha Senanayake and the Country Programme Manager of the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat), Mr Chanaka Talpahewa, also participated at the event. Representatives from key housing and urban sector agencies in Sri Lanka were also present. Mr. Chanaka Talpahewa reading the UN-Habitat Executive Director's message, stated "Adequate housing is a universal human right and should be at the centre of the urban policy. It is part of the right to an adequate standard of living and it means much more than having four walls and a roof." He further stated that the New Urban Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goal's target "To ensure access for all to adequate, safe and affordable housing and basic services and upgrade slums by 2030" are both fundamental to ensure a dignified life for millions of people worldwide. The event also featured song and dance presentations by local school children and concluded with the handing over of prizes to school children for art and essay competitions, awards to Construction Industrial development Authority (CIDA) trainees and house ownership documents to residents.


In commemoration of World Habitat Day 3 October 2016 in Bangkok, groups representing urban poor communities in Thailand marched to the United Nations compound where they were welcomed by representatives from UNESCAP and UN-Habitat. Approximately 2000 people presented a petition to be forwarded to the UN Secretary General. Echoing this year's theme for World Habitat Day Housing at the Centre the petition called for the Royal Government of Thailand and the United Nations to support more secure and affordable housing for the urban and rural poor in Thailand. For more information please visit



UN-Habitat office in Madrid celebrated World Habitat Day with an open event addressing political representatives, academy, civil society, local government, media and communication professionals. The event was held at COAM Madrid. Mr. Eduardo Moreno, Head of Research and Capacity Development at UN-Habitat, was invited to present The World Cities Report 2016 and participate in a round table panel discussion organized to discuss Housing at the center of the New Urban Agenda. Other panelists included José María Ezquiaga, Dean of Madrid´s Architects Collegue; Anselmo Menéndez, a representative from the Ministry of Housing; Raquel Rodríguez, a Professor at Architecture Univertsity, Madrid; Juana López, a Spanish Federation of Cities and Villages representative, María Buhigas, an Urbanist and UN-Habitat consultant, and Pablo Linde, a journalist at ELPAíS and the moderator of the session.


On the occasion of World Habitat Day on 3 October, Habitat III hosted an Urban Breakfast in Geneva, Switzerland. The event was organized under the title Together Towards the Implementation of the New Urban Agenda. The Breakfast provided a final update on the upcoming Habitat III conference in Quito, Ecuador, and discussions on the draft New Urban Agenda. Participants included Mr. Arturo Cabrera, the representative of the Permanent Mission of Ecuador to the United Nations in Geneva and other key stakeholders. The event comprised of a panel discussion with Jean-Yves Barcelo making a presentation about planning, decentralisation, and access to basic services as the primary objectives of the New Urban Agenda. Other speakers included Rosa Mondardini who emphasised that listening to the public was an absolute necessity, and Amie Figueiredo who highlighted rising trends in inter-connectivity between European cities and building smart cities. The event took place at the United Nations Office at Geneva.


Mr. Santiago Martinez of the Rural Interaction Project planned a public art campaign in the city of Los Cabos (San Jose del Cabo) as part of his own expression and celebration of the World Habitat Day on 3 October 2016. He displayed #HabitatDay on his cart while selling coffee, wore a branded backpack container and posted content on his social media platforms related to climate change, biodiversity, ecology, art, urban development, social issues, social economy.