Gazing out on the ocean from the Intercontinental Mauritius Resort Balaclava Fort, it could have been hard to imagine that the 12th African Union of Architects Congress addressed some big challenges and issues that Africa is facing in the coming years. More than 500 congress participants listened to and discussed with 15 well-known speakers topics such as housing, economic growth, infrastructure, urbanization, technologies, energy and water scarcity, sanitation and more. Among the speakers was Kunlé Adeyemi who was in the news for a prototype school built in the shallow seabed in Nigeria that was famously photographed by Iwan Baan. The African population is expected to grow to 2.4 billion people by 2050. Half of this population will be living in urban areas and cities. While this is a huge potential for economic growth and the development of the continent, it is also a tremendous challenge to be ready for such a shift. The African Union of Architects founded in 1981 unites architects all over the continent to collectively express their views and opinions about architecture and the built environment and to share best practices that go beyond the regular topics addressed by the industry. Collectively they strive to better the African continent. When the non-profit organization launched there were 23 countries participating, at the congress in Mauritius on 25 to 29 June 2018, there were 41 countries represented. These 41 countries are the voice of about 60,000 architects who associate with the professional network. Under the theme ‘Africa R. I. S. E.’ the congress delegates looked at research and development, investment, sustainability, and empowerment. The presentations went beyond architecture and constructions. The diverse audience of architects, stakeholders in the construction and building industry as well as contractors, suppliers, property developers, funding institutions, and business facilitators were well suited to deeply discuss these issues. Building new houses and buildings will not be enough for the rapid population growth and migration to cities. The leaders and experts at the congress showcased that innovation, sustainable solutions, new policies, empowerment, and strong collaboration are needed to create a bright and prosperous future for Africa.