SDG 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities

SDG 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities

Making cities sustainable means creating career and business opportunities, safe and affordable housing, and building resilient societies and economies. It involves investment in public transport, creating green public spaces, and improving urban planning and management in participatory and inclusive ways.


The campus is the heart of art and culture within the city. Research on cultural heritage preservation are made accessible to the public, along with musical and cultural performances. 

Arts and the Community


Sunway University is connected to the public transport network, and an extensive pedestrian footpath elevated above traffic. Thousands of campus citizens walk on foot to nearby amenities.

Public Spaces


Freely accessible to the public, the campus plays host to many events and activities throughout the year. The Library, parks, gardens, art gallery and exhibition halls are open to the public throughout the year.

Sustainable Practices


11.2 Support of arts and heritage

11.2.1 Public access to buildings
Provide public access to buildings and/or monuments or natural heritage landscapes of cultural significance

The Sunway University campus is accessible to the public. The Jeffrey Cheah auditoriums were named after the Chancellor, Tan Sri Jeffrey Cheah. This space is open to the public and regularly hosts public events for the community such as distinguished speakers’ series, professorial lectures as well as international conferences. 
Our campus is easily accessible via the public transport network and it is part of an extensive pedestrian walkway that allows anyone from the city to enter the campus on foot.  

11.2.2 Public access to libraries
Provide public access to libraries including books and publications

The Tun Hussein Onn Sunway Library provides services to staff and students and is accessible to the public after an application process.


11.2.3 Public access to museums
Provide public access to museums, exhibition spaces or galleries, or works of art and artefacts

Members of the public are allowed to freely access the campus exhibition halls, art gallery and concert venues.  They can check the events page to find out about on-going events and performances.

11.2.4 Public access to green spaces
Provide free public access to open spaces and green spaces

Green spaces on campus are open to the public. The University is connected to an extensive pedestrian walkway which allows the public to walk through the campus freely throughout the year. These green spaces are an integral part of the campus.  However, as Malaysia is blessed with a tropical climate having sunshine and rain throughout the year, these open areas are also covered with transparent roofs to provide shelter from the elements.

11.2.5 Arts and heritage contribution
Contribute to local arts, in terms of number of annual public performances of university choirs, theatre groups, orchestras etc… either ad-hoc or as part of an ongoing programme

In 2022, there were more than 30 performances and exhibitions held. Click on the links to see the 31 performances, 13 exhibitions and 12 seminars held.

There ongoing lunchtime concerts and musical ensemble performances that take place on campus annually. These activities embody the shared values of artistic exploration, education, and the preservation of cultural heritage, benefiting both our institution and the local community.

11.2.6 Record and preserve cultural heritage
Deliver projects to record and preserve intangible cultural heritage such as local folklore, traditions, language, and knowledge. This can include the heritage of displaced communities.

The University approach the task of delivering projects to record and preserve intangible cultural heritage, including that of displaced communities, with a shared commitment to cultural preservation, community engagement, interdisciplinary collaboration, and educational outreach.


11.4 Sustainable practices

11.4.1 Sustainable practices targets
Measure and set targets for more sustainable commuting (walking, cycling or other non-motorized transport, vanpools, carpools, shuttlebus or public transportation, motorcycle, scooter or moped, or electric vehicles)

The University has targets relating to percentage of population who commute by foot & maintaining or reducing the ratio of available parking per capita.

Our sustainable commuting targets include;
1. Limited Parking Bays
No increase in the parking bays per capita. Despite the increase in Campus population, the number of available parking bays has remained the same.

2. Walking
Increasing proportion of campus citizens who are net-zero commuters. With the campus population set to increase in the near future, the University has invested in ensuring that pedestrian and canopy walkways are safe and easily accessible for connectivity within the city.

11.4.2 Promote sustainable commuting
Undertake actions to promote more sustainable commuting 

The University aims to reduce the environmental impact of commuting, and constantly promotes low-carbon alternatives to commuting. 

Among our ongoing actions include;
1. Canopy Walk
Providing convenience to pedestrians with sheltered footpaths that connects the campus to the mall, hospital and nearby residential area within 15 minutes on foot. 

2. Come Carpool
The University developed a car-pooling web application to connect potential car poolers travelling to and from the campus. 

3. BRT - Sunway Line
Promoting the use of public bus and train network. The nearest station is located ten minutes from the University main entrance and provides seamless travel to other parts of the city.

4. Free Shuttle Bus
Promoting the free shuttle bus service that operates within the city where the University is located. The University lobby is one of the stations where passengers can board these buses.

Apart from creating a more sustainable and health-conscious community, sustainable choices of commuting also improves the overall environment of the city.

11.4.3 Allow remote working
Promote or allow telecommuting or remote working for employees as a matter of policy or standard practice, or offer a condensed working week to reduce employee commuting

By promoting and allowing remote working, the University aims to provide our employees with greater flexibility, reduce commuting-related stress, and contribute to a more sustainable work environment. These policies align with our commitment to supporting the well-being and productivity of our staff, as well as our broader goals of sustainability and operational efficiency.

11.4.4 Affordable housing for employees
Provide affordable housing for employees

By providing affordable housing for our employees, we aim to enhance their quality of life, reduce financial stress, and contribute to a more inclusive and diverse workforce. 
1.    Staff Discount for Property Purchase
The objective of this scheme is to assist staff in property discount for residential properties developed by the Sunway Group, master developer of the 800-acre Bandar Sunway township where the University is located.

2.    Co-living @ Sunway House Waterfront Residence
This initiative offers accessibility, affordability and connectivity all in one place – the co-living space. Staff can also invest in the future property – 25% of the rental will be accumulated for Rent-to-Buy  credits to purchase a Sunway Property of their choice.

These two schemes align with our values of supporting our staff's well-being and fostering a strong, inclusive, sustainable campus community.

11.4.5 Affordable housing for students
Provide affordable housing for students

The Sun-U Apartment is an affordable housing option for students and rooms are priced from as low as USD 90 (RM 380) per month.

By providing affordable housing for our students, we aim to alleviate financial stress, support their academic success, and foster a diverse and inclusive campus community. This commitment is aligned with our values of ensuring access to education for all, regardless of financial circumstances, and enhancing the overall well-being of our student body.


11.4.6 Pedestrian priority on campus
Prioritise pedestrian access on campus

Within the Sunway campus, covered underground and elevated walkways that run between two or more buildings provide sheltered pedestrian access during extreme weather conditions.

To reduce the need for motorised transportation, which has some consequences such as noise, visual and air pollution - priority has been given to pedestrian-oriented developments included in designing educational spaces.

11.4.7 Local authority collaboration regarding planning and development 
Work with local authorities to address planning issues and development, including ensuring that local residents are able to access affordable housing

In 2022, the University brought together Southeast Asian stakeholders from the industry, academia, policymakers, and the general public to discuss issues relating to affordable housing in Malaysia. 

It aimed to look at what housing affordability is, how it should be defined, and how the housing crisis may be mitigated. Speakers at the event included Dr Tricia Yeoh (CEO, Institute for Democratic and Economic Affairs (IDEAS)),  Tan Sri Datuk Eddy Chen Lok Lio (REHDA Institute) and many more representatives from various organisations.

The panel speakers concluded with how they think the housing crisis could be solved, ranging from the creation of a housing database to ramping up the rent-to-own schemes. 

11.4.8 Planning development - new build standards
Build new buildings to sustainable standards

Sunway’s implementation of green building designs is reflected in many of our major projects and commitments. In 2019, the University begun plans for physical infrastructure expansion to accommodate the expected population growth by the year 2025.

The University will expand into a nearby location known as the Sunway South Quay Square which will include a performing arts centre. These new facilities will be built according to the Gold Plus certification standard of green buildings and is expected to be completed by 2025.

11.4.9 Building on brownfield sites
Build on brownfield sites, where possible

Sunway University's dedication to environmental sustainability is not a mere statement but a living example of how higher education institutions can lead by example.

The University campus is built on a brownfield site and ongoing development is ongoing within the same site.

By transforming a once-barren mining site into a thriving and sustainable smart city, the university demonstrates the immense potential for regeneration, renewal, and sustainable urbanisation in the face of environmental challenges.