The role for and of Islam in urban planning is typically overlooked or misperceived, with the question of how ‘Islamic’ contemporary Muslim cities are not addressed. Despite numerous works on Muslim city planning and characteristics, these have not provided a simplified model of Islamic goals and features which can be utilised for general testing and comparison. In this study, such a model is constructed using the Qur’an, Sunnah, and sources detailing planning and administration of cities in the Caliphate from 622 AD to roughly 650 AD. Eight major objectives are linked to 21 observable features, which can be used to measure conformance of a subject city with the theoretical ideal based on Shari’ah. The measured conformance differences can also be used to compare modern cities across time and with each other. This allows clearer identification of contextual factors responsible, and can depict the fluctuating influence of Islamic objectives. The constructed model additionally exhibits Islam’s compatibility with and relevance to modern urban planning paradigms, including economic and environmental sustainability and social cohesion. Adaptation and application of Islamic planning objectives in contemporary cities can then rationally be utilised to ameliorate current shortcomings, improving urban conditions for Muslim and other communities.