What is a Congress?

The annual Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU) is the leading venue for New Urbanist education, collaboration, and networking. CNU members come from around the world to discuss development practices and public policies, learn from recent innovative work, and advance new initiatives to transform our communities.

  • Learn proven New Urbanist solutions on:
    • How to create stronger, resilient communities
    • How to adapt to demographic changes
    • How to deliver major energy savings and slow carbon emissions
    • How to be ready to meet demand for a projected 50-million-unit increase in new residences by 2030
  • Connect and collaborate with innovators -- including green designers, architects, builders, developers, city planning officials, transportation design, and community leaders -- committed to adapting and incorporating principles of New Urbanism in their cities and towns, both domestically and abroad.
  • Experience the history of Salt Lake City's planning traditions and see how traditional urbanism is being applied at the city and regional level through walking tours and events.
  • Learn about the latest applications of New Urbanism -- and see how CNU's initiatives shape the design of our communities.
  • Contribute your own ideas and experience to take New Urbanism to the next level.
  • Learn about new products and the latest innovations at CNU exhibits.

New Urbanism is the movement dedicated to the restoration of existing urban centers, the reconfiguration of formless sprawl into real neighborhoods and diverse districts, the conservation of natural lands, and the preservation of our built legacy. New Urbanist communities are walkable, offer a diverse range of housing options, encourage a rich mix of uses, and provide welcoming public spaces as detailed in the Charter of the New Urbanism.

New Urbanism is an interdisciplinary movement. We welcome developers, architects, landscape architects, town planners, urban designers, engineers, environmental consultants, transit/transportation planners, bicycle and pedestrian advocates, housing specialists, real estate brokers, regulators, real estate financiers and government officials. Students, community activists and interested members of the public are also encouraged to attend.

Program Highlights

CNU offers a number of formats for expanding the current thinking on New Urbanism, as well as expanding your understanding of its principles.

New Urbanism 101: Introduction to the Principles of New Urbanism

This in-depth primer on the history, principles, and concepts of New Urbanism will provide Congress attendees the opportunity to hear founding members and experts of the movement such as Andrés Duany discuss why New Urbanism works. The day-long course provides an illustrated introduction and a foundation in key concepts such as conventional vs. traditional development, the Charter, why transportation planning matters, and theory vs. practice.. Attend this session and you will walk away with an excellent understanding of what makes a great place and why.

Breakout Sessions

CNU 21 will be organized around several tracks, with more than 50 concurrent sessions that make up the heart of the programming on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Breakout offerings include sessions for first-time attendees and seasoned New Urbanists alike, allowing you to create an agenda that suits you.

Plenary Sessions

Plenary sessions bring the entire Congress together for a shared experience. Each features an innovative thinker and expert practitioner to share the latest advances in New Urbanism.


These in-depth specialized seminars, led by expert practitioners, are geared toward the advanced professional. These sessions require a separate ticket (though they are included with the Package registration).

Guided Tours

Get to know Salt Lake City, and see New Urbanism in practice throughout our host city/region. The Guided Tours are a great way to discover the history of SLC and its surrounding areas. The tours are ticketed events and require additional registration. Space is limited. Early registration is strongly advised. More details TBA.

Networking and Social Events

CNU 21 offers numerous opportunities to tap into others' expertise and share your own. Engage with fellow attendees through our networking and social events.