Looking ahead to healthier cities
$1 Million donation launches new Faculty of Environment Future Cities Initiative
The Faculty of Environment at the University of Waterloo has received a $1 million donation to launch the Δ Program (Delta Program) and provide pivotal funding for the Future Cities Initiative, a multidisciplinary endeavor focused on grooming the future leaders of city building and harnessing research, knowledge and innovation to create just, healthy and sustainable communities.
The landmark gift comes from fellow co-founders and Waterloo alumni Frank Cairo and Troy van Haastrecht of Caivan Communities, the centerpiece of Environment’s new Future Cities Initiative.
Deeply passionate about the challenges of sustainable development, real estate developer Cairo notes this donation has a professional and philosophical purpose for him.
Caivan’s funding of the program is, “a catalyst that we hope will precipitate a framework for identifying the tools and techniques required to positively shape future cities,” said Cairo.
Linked directly to the Environment’s priority to develop tomorrow’s leaders, Cairo added that, “recipients will need to be prepared to address the threats and opportunities associated with big data, advanced synthetic intelligence and the proliferation of automation across all sectors. These, along with a changing climate, are truly some of the tough nuts to crack with respect to the shape of future cities. Qualitative and quantitative tools will be required for future leaders to build or, at minimum, facilitate cities that are resilient, adaptive and inclusive.”
The donation will be directed to the following initiatives within the Δ Program (Delta Program):
“Troy and I value Caivan’s partnership with the University of Waterloo,” said Cairo. “We believe strongly that resilient cities of the future will require thoughtful and informed leadership in social, economic and environmental realms, as the pace of unparalleled change remains exponential.”
Caivan Communities is an integrated land development and home building company with communities based in Ottawa and the Greater Toronto Area. Caivan is challenging industrial paradigms, building neighborhoods that have the capacity to improve life for the residents that call them home. Caivan is a leader in the integration of data, automation and software development in its processes and decision making. Caivan has harnessed automated manufacturing systems and technology in reforming its production pipeline to reduce its environmental footprint while improving product quality and energy efficiency for its consumers.
For over 50 years, the Faculty of Environment has been dedicated to having a positive impact locally and globally. With interdisciplinary programs and research, our community of students, faculty, staff, alumni, donors and industry partners make meaningful change happen in the classroom, the office and in communities around the world, together. Our vision is to use our unique position as a leading teaching and research institute for the environment to create sustainable solutions needed to address the complex challenges facing our world.