Yesterday the United Nations hosted a special Day Of Cities, an event exploring the increasing importance of cities throughout the world. Glasgow is regarded by the UN as an exemplar in getting housing right.

It was an honour to tell some of the world’s leading authorities on the subject how in the past two decades we have gone from some of western Europe’s poorest housing to creating thousands of affordable, accessible and high-quality homes.

The impact of good housing on the lives of people and communities cannot be under-estimated. It’s a feather in Glasgow’s cap that cities across the world are urged to follow our lead.

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High-levels conversation in Geneva may seem far removed from everyday life in Glasgow. But improvements to the fabric of our city and life within it continue to drive forward our work within the council.

And in recent days it’s been hugely encouraging to see how these issues often transcend party politics, with general agreement across committees and the Council Chamber on several issues aimed at improving our streets and neighbourhoods.

The Evening Times, perhaps more than any other media outlet, is well aware of the challenges we face regarding roads repairs. The paper’s campaigns and readers have brought to our attention localised defects often quicker than they otherwise would.

But last week councillors from all parties agreed to a new system of roads maintenance which we are confident will address an issue which matters to so many of our constituents.

The new system focuses on permanent repairs to potholes and other roads defects at the first time of asking. Temporary repairs have become discredited because they can deteriorate quickly and then need to be re-done repeatedly.

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Moving to a system of first-time permanent repairs means the work on fixing defects is high quality and durable, reducing the number of temporary patches by up to 75%. Road users, from major bus firms to commuting motorists and cyclists will benefit from these changes.

There was agreement in a Council debate on the perennial issue of littering, on the need to for rigorous enforcement but also that much was being done to address it.

New figures from Keep Scotland Beautiful show that where we have invested in the roll-out of larger capacity street bins there has been an 18% reduction in litter. Schools and communities have taken part in regular ‘pick ups’, with some 60,000 people taking part in clean-ups last year. That’s one in 10 of our citizens.

In recent years we’ve also issued 36,000 fixed penalty notices. As well as paying outright or instalments, those who have been issued with a penalty have the option instead to take part in a three-hour community clean-up. This is an excellent approach to stimulating behavioural change.

I know that many Glaswegians are embarrassed by the behaviour of those who drop litter and ignore efforts to improve the look and feel of our city. In the months ahead I hope to make further announcements on how we as a city take this issue forward.

And there was a large degree of consensus in the Council Chamber to support the push by Green MSP Mark Ruskell for mandatory 20mph zones in built up areas. The SNP’s 2017 Manifesto for Glasgow made a commitment to do what we can to have this rolled out across the city and our view is that national legislation could assist this.

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We want to change the relationship between pedestrians, cyclists and motorised vehicles on our city streets and roads and mandatory 20mph zones would advance that. Not only would such measures improve our commitment to road safety but it would also enhance the ambience in our neighbourhoods.

The fabric of our neighbourhoods has changed beyond recognition in the last two decades or so. It is no longer the streets of bricked up tenements with overgrown gardens still too often depicted. But we still have much to do and I can assure our communities the City Government is relentless in its vision for a better Glasgow.