Kigali joins Bloomberg’s elite “champion cities”

The Rwandan capital Kigali was selected Tuesday from among a list of 50 Champion Cities as finalists in the 2021…

The Rwandan capital Kigali was selected Tuesday from among a list of 50 Champion Cities as finalists in the 2021 Global Mayors Challenge, a municipal source confirmed to APA.The scheme is a global innovation competition that identifies and accelerates the most ambitious ideas developed by cities in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

These 50 urban innovations rose to the top of a competitive pool of more than 630 applications from 99 countries, in the first-ever Global Mayors Challenge.

As a Mayors Challenge finalist, Kigali now advances to the four-month Champion Phase of the competition. 

From June through October, the 50 finalist cities will refine their ideas with technical assistance from Bloomberg Philanthropies and its network of leading innovation experts.

Fifteen of the 50 cities will ultimately win the grand prize, with each receiving $1 million and robust multi-year technical assistance to implement and scale their ideas. Grand Prize Winners will be announced in early 2022.

“These 50 finalists are showing the world that in the face of the pandemic’s enormous challenges, cities are rising to meet them with bold, innovative, and ambitious ideas,” said Michael R. Bloomberg, founder of Bloomberg LP and Bloomberg Philanthropies and 108th mayor of New York City.

“By helping these cities test their ideas over the coming months, we will have a chance to identify cutting-edge policies and programs that can allow cities to rebuild in ways that make them stronger and healthier, and more equal and more just.”

Kigali proposes to adopt proven rain water-harvesting technologies in informal communities.

The Mayor of Kigali, Pudence Rubingisa welcomed the development saying that the city looks forward to working with Bloomberg on different projects.

“We are very excited to be one of the winners of the Mayors’ Challenge and we look forward to working with Bloomberg on a project that offers a full package to upgrade informal settlements,” Rubingisa said.

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