Re-imagining cities through urban engineering

Illustrated urban engineers

As the founding faculty of the University of Waterloo and Canada’s largest engineering school, Waterloo Engineering has an opportunity to ensure the civil engineers of tomorrow are the new urban leaders, entrusted by society to achieve a sustainable world, while ensuring better quality of life.

This new generation of city leaders is necessary to create effective, efficient and sustainable cities that position Canadian metropolitan regions to be globally recognized for their livability and economic competitiveness. Waterloo Engineering has seen the need to uniquely prepare civil engineers who are innovators and integrators of technology, while able to define and solve the difficult problems our nation is facing.

The Urban Engineering vision at UWaterloo is to build a community of leaders from municipal engineering and academics in urban research, and to develop urban sustainability literacy among students to motivate their technical specializations, empowering them to traverse beyond their disciplines to create livable futures. These efforts aim at increasing the role of civil engineers in urban governance and improving the career opportunities and authority of engineers in decision-making processes in cities.


Canada's entire relationship with high-speed rail has been studied relentlessly. A dozen proposals have popped up over the past few decades. Faster rail is even in the federal Minister of Transportation's new mandate letter. And still, nothing. So, what's the hold up? Infrastructure and city planning expert Nadine Ibrahim speaks to Chris Hall about this situation on December 21, 2019 on CBC News: The House with Chris Hall.

Professor Ibrahim was quoted in a Globe and Mail article on October 12, 2019: "Come on, ride the train: Why Canada needs a national rail strategy" by Elizabeth Renzetti (login required to view full article).

Educating the urban engineers of the future: The Turkstra Chair in Urban Engineering is preparing tomorrow’s municipal leaders.” By Megan Vander Woude. University of Waterloo Impact Stories includes opinion and quotations from Nadine Ibrahim.