Innovations Transforming Urban Development

A look at the innovations emerging to combat challenges cities are facing when it comes to urban development.

Innovations Transforming Urban Development

We are in the midst of the biggest wave of urbanism in human history. Today, more than 4.3 billion people or 55% of the world’s population live in urban settings. By 2050, the share of the world’s population living in cities is expected to rise to 80% (World Economic Forum).

With more people concentrated in urban areas, cities must adapt to new challenges when it comes to infrastructure, housing, material consumption, accessibility, sustainability, and much more. In this blog, we’ll look at new innovations that have emerged to combat new challenges cities are facing.

Market Overview

Using the Cypris innovation dashboard, we identified innovation activity in the urban development market has grown over the past 5 years, with a 62.5% average growth rate. Within the vertical, there are 392 technologies being applied within 38 different categories. The fastest growing category is Signaling with an 125.0% increase in new patents filed over the last 5 years.

The most active top players in Urban Development by patent number include UNIV SHENYANG JIANZHU (16), HUAGAO DIGITAL TECH CO LTD (8), and COLOPL INC (6).

Market news in the space is dominated primarily by lawsuits (45%), followed by new products (12%) and new partnerships (12%).

Notably, while diving into urban development market news, we discovered that Google released a new tool that provides real-time land cover data called Dynamic World, created in partnership with global nonprofit organization World Resources Institute (WRI). Prior to its creation, it was difficult to access detailed and up-to-date land cover, across land and water types. Dynamic World reveals how the earth’s surface is changing from various activities, and allows viewers to track land cover changes from environmental factors, like floods and snowstorms, and changes induced by human activity like urban development and deforestation. The tool will help generate awareness around issues facing the planet, and equip scientists, environmental researchers, policymakers, and the general public with the information to better understand environmental disturbances and plan for future disasters.

Innovative Patents in Urban Development

Here are 5 of the most fascinating patents within the urban development space:

Method for constructing artificial islands with reefs from urban construction waste: This invention provides a 5-step method for constructing artificial islands with reefs from urban construction waste. The method includes 1) recycling the urban construction waste; 2) bonding and pouring the urban construction waste by the aid of cement to obtain large cement brick specimens; 3) transporting the cement specimens to coastal regions by the aid of unidirectional logistics empty materials; 4) transporting the cement specimens to the reefs; and 5) constructing the islands by the aid of cement bricks in falling tide periods.

Inventors: WANG XIAOJIN, & LAI BINGHONG; Patent #: CN103882831A

Roadside dedicated to people with reduced mobility: This invention is a curb specially designed to facilitate movement on the sidewalk for people using wheelchairs and the blind or visually impaired. The invention makes it possible to guide the wheels of a wheelchair, and protect pedestrians from cars. The regularly spaced outfalls in the invention contain a slight slope in order to evacuate rainwater as well. This invention can be precast in concrete and is particularly intended for road and urban development projects in the building and public works industry.

Inventor: GILLET ENGUERRAN; Patent #: FR3115300A1

Underwater Two-Level Tunnel in the Zone of Dense Urban Development: This patent is an underwater two-level tunnel designed for a dense urban area. The tunnel consists of a main two-tier tunnel with separate traffic lanes located inside and additional branches connecting the main tunnel with its terminals located on road sections of the road network adjacent to the tunnel. A second level in the main tunnel and the presence of at least one lane of free movement helps to eliminates the intersection of additional branches and the need to build traffic interchanges.

Inventor: Unlisted; Patent #: RU196900U1

Container House: This invention is a prefabricated transportable container house with a foundation of stainless steel pipe bodies that helps with earthquake and hurricane resistance. Mega structures with numerous container homes can be used when stacking of two or more container homes is insufficient and large-scale urban development is required, and they'll be able to withstand earthquakes and hurricanes due to a net-cladding system of wire.

Inventor: KANGNA NELSON SHEN; Patent #: BR112012010096A2

Solar pedestrian overpass: This patent is a solar pedestrian overpass which comprises a connecting column, a sliding groove formed in the outer wall of the connecting column, four solar panels arranged in the sliding groove, and an output port formed in the end face of the upper end of the connecting column. The bottom surface of the connecting column and the solar panel at the lowermost layer are positioned on the same horizontal plane.

Inventor: LING JIEYONG; Patent #: CN211815496U

Whether through sustainability initiatives, mobility and accessibility efforts, or structures made more resistant to natural disasters, new innovations are changing how we plan and create cities. To learn more about patents and new innovations in the urban development space, visit and get started with access to the innovation dashboard.

If you’d like to explore recent patents filed, you can search through our global patent search engine for free here:


Cypris Innovation Dashboard, Query: Urban Development,-mega-structure,-sets-of-mega-structures,-arrangement-of-many-sets-of-mega-structures,-methods-for-building-a-house-with-standard-container-frames,-for-transporting-a-container-house-not-yet-assembled,-for-preparing-a-foundation-for-laying-a-container-house,-to-use-container-house-for-urban-development,-to-process-container-house-for-urban-development,-to-protect-mega-structures-from-earthquakes-and-hurricanes,-and,-cylindrical-foundation/BR112012010096A2