1055 research outputs found

    Co-Creating Inclusive Public Spaces: Engaging Underrepresented and Marginalized Communities in the Planning Process

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    Demographic data show that life expectancy is increasing, due to medical developments, higher living standards, healthier diets, etc. But longer life expectancy also means a higher proportion of the elderly population with various functional handicaps. The concept of functionally disabled people is broad and can include persons with disabilities, the elderly, pregnant women, young children and anyone who is permanently or temporarily handicapped in some way. This paper reviews the academic research in the field of architecture in relation to the accessibility of public spaces for persons with disabilities, with a focus on co-creation and community engagement. For all people, independent movement and mobility are essential. A requirement for ensuring the independent movement of persons with disabilities and their integration into society is the physical accessibility of urban areas and buildings. The technical foundations for accessibility design have been established by universal design's principles and guidelines, but they still require aesthetic value to be added. Allowing disabled people access to public spaces increases their visibility, which strengthens their sense of independence and autonomy and promotes a more positive perception of society. Persons with disabilities are less stigmatized as a result of their inclusion in society, and the general public and professionals are more aware of the need to modify environments and services so that everyone can use them. Inclusion of persons with disabilities in society leads to destigmatization and increased awareness among professionals and the general public about the importance of adapting the environment and services so that all users can use them on equal terms. However, more than technical solutions are required to achieve accessibility and inclusion. Co-creation and community involvement are essential components of creating accessible and inclusive public places. Co- creation is a design approach that involves end users and designers working together to jointly develop solutions that are tailored to their needs (Prahalad & Ramaswamy, 2004). Community participation means actively integrating people of the community in the design and planning processes, particularly those who are underrepresented or marginalized, to ensure that their viewpoints are taken into consideration. Architects frequently associate disability with accessibility and compliance with spatial legislation, but they overlook the social aspect of disability and the added value it can bring. Individuals with sensory and physical limitations view spaces differently, giving them a distinct perspective on and experience with the built world. By incorporating underrepresented and marginalized people in the design process, architects can acquire a more diversified perspective on accessibility and inclusivity, leading to more effective and meaningful design solutions. This paper proceeds by saying that community involvement and co-creation are critical for developing inclusive and accessible public spaces. To accomplish accessibility and inclusion, more than simply technological improvements are required; a societal and cultural shift in favour of respecting diversity and strengthening underrepresented and marginalised people is also required. Involving persons with disabilities in the design and planning process may result in a more inclusive and equitable society

    Small Lexicon on Ecology (for those Interested in Cities)

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    Some notions about ecology show that if there is not a corpus there is an interesting and pertinent debate. We quote: on the environment itself, negative commons, mistake of the isolated system, dealing with the symptoms and not the causes (the tragedy of the horizons), and on the Opinion, Great Reversal, laws of opinion, greenwashing and the return of enclave economy. The cities are concerned by the two different stakes, adaptation and mitigation. Also, the question is posed of the places where ecological awareness can appear

    Overall Layout of Socialist and Post-Socialist Large Housing Estates in Croatia

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    The study compares the overall layout of socialist (old) and post-socialist (new) large housing estates (LHEs) in Croatian large cities that depends on daily basis equipment and public infrastructure. The existence and quality of primary facilities and infrastructure is different in new settlements, where it is more often reduced in comparison to old settlements. The main differences occured during the last three decades of transition and market-led economy adopted by Croatia, when the construction of multi-family buildings became commercial and private, and when the construction of urbanistically planned housing estates as housing units became mostly abandoned. For the analysis, the qualitative method of semi-structured interviews with experts (N=26) was used, which was conducted in Croatia during 2022 as part of a joint and bilateral project between Croatia and Slovenia. The current study analyses attitudes of experts on how socialist and post-socialist LHEs in four major Croatian cities (Osijek, Rijeka, Split, and Zagreb) fulfill residents’ daily, primary level needs. Experts show that it is the level of neighborhood in which elementary differences in these estates can be seen, and that basic facilities used daily by the residents (school, kindergarten, health center, public transport, green spaces, public spaces etc.) often lack in new residential construction. Therefore, at the level of estates, socialist estates show that they are often better equipped than post-socialist estates, with more public and green spaces and facilities. Due to a large density of building during the transition period new housing estates experience a reduction in public services, green areas and equipment, and therefore a neglect of residents' needs. New residential construction is shown to be reduced in terms of the multifunctionality of space and estate, which should be urbanistically, sustainably and ecologically desirable, but it is often not the case. Thus, the architectural appearance of the post-socialist estate is inadequately adaptive for the residents, because it is too densely built and inhumane in its overall layout, with inadequate infrastructure and facilities, unlike the socialist estates that are, although older and more derelict, more desirable to the residents for everyday living. It is therefore necessary to regulate the future process of planning and housing construction through the national legal framework

    Airflow in Urban Environment: an Approach to Improve Egyptian Buildings Regulations

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    Rapid urbanization among many factors contribute to elevate air temperature inside city’s urban fabric that causes urban human discomfort. Natural ventilation in urban canyons is one of the measures that can limit that effect and minimize the air temperature of urban areas. Benefits range from pedestrian comfort in the urban environment, to efficiency of natural ventilation systems in urban streets. Studies have covered different urban forms and their impact on pedestrian comfort, others have investigated the role of built-up density on pollutants dispersion, some have studied the role of urban configurations on natural ventilation in buildings, while some studied different physical characteristics which also affect the urban heat island. What is yet to be defined is the effect of those physical characteristics on shaping the building regulations, especially in Egypt, and their efficiency regarding natural ventilation systems in urban canyons to eliminate the raised temperature. Spreading green architecture in Egypt requires reshaping current legislation and codes, starting by revising the existing local building laws and regulations. The aim of this work is to assess and analyse the main building code in Egypt by studying and analysing theories on natural ventilation and its physical characteristics

    FTN – Frequent Transit Network: Transit Strategies towards Achieving Transit-Oriented Development in Alexandria City, Egypt

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    Land use policy and transport policy are normally integrated through transit-oriented development (TOD) strategies. (TOD) is a "mixed-use community”, that encourages people to live near transit services and to decrease dependence on their driving. Instead of requiring riders to consult a timetable or wait for extended periods of time, transit service is most appealing when it is frequent enough that riders can arrive at a stop knowing that a bus or train will arrive soon. Frequent Transit Networks (FTNs) aim to deliver services in high-demand areas in a convenient, connected, and memorable. (FTNs) are intended to serve the locations that the majority of people want to visit most frequently and to make service convenient by operating at least every 15 minutes from early morning until at least mid-afternoon. This paper discusses, evaluates, and looks into the possibility of implementing TOD and FTNs in Alexandria, Egypt. Alexandria is experiencing a sharp increase in transport demand as a result of its rapid urbanisation. With the narrow streets and limited spaces the rapid urbanisation process has led to a significant increase in traffic volume. This paper adopts the Frequent Transit Network (FTNs) strategies in identifying corridors linking the city’s urban centers and the nodes where these corridors intersect. The main purpose is to direct growth , development and to create a proposal for a “System Backbone” that provides a structure for other services. Expected findings from this study is to perform a framework that identify potential (FTN) solutions for the city. It also proposes a “Key Corridor Network” for the bus routes and light rail transit, emphasising corridors in which combined transport services could provide a more efficient operation of the city’s public transport

    EVAPO+ Transpiring Green Walls – a Demonstration on How to Maximise the Evapotranspiration Effect to Cool Down our Microclimate

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    It is undeniable that climate change effects are impacting our daily lives and need to be considered when shaping our living environment and therefore also included in matters of spatial and landscape planning. Climate change adaptation measures mostly address climate change effects in large cities – such as overheating and urban heat islands. New approaches and solutions to improve liveability and to act against the consequences of climate change are required – not only in big cities but also in smaller towns and rural communities. Nature-based-Solutions (NbS) can tackle some of the most pressing urban environmental and societal challenges such as urban heat islands and by fostering adaptation to climate, halting biodiversity loss and promoting public health and social cohesion. Green and blue infrastructures are considered to be a form of urban sustainability as they not only reduce temperatures and other urban environmental effects, but also improve air and water quality, reduce stormwater runoff, and attract pollinators. Vertical greening and green walls have many advantages and combine a positive effect on the environment and microclimate with an improvement in the quality of life in urban areas. During the research project “Strasshof. Klimafit!” a concept for “EVAPO+ transpiring green walls” was developed. In comparison to other forms of vertical greening, the EVAPO+ transpiring green walls have a particularly high cooling effect and primarily serve as natural air conditioning in the outdoor area. The name “EVAPO+ transpiring green wall” is derived from the term evapotranspiration, which is the evaporation from plants, water, soil and substrates. EVAPO+ green walls increase and maximise evapotranspiration and thus contribute more effectively than other green wall systems to cooling the microclimate surrounding us. With the EVAPO+ transpiring green walls which have been innovatively developed, the quality of stay can be improved at many locations in microclimatic areas. Essential functions of green infrastructure and nature-based solutions, such as creating shaded spaces as well as reducing the reflection of incoming solar radiation and cooling of the surrounding environment through evaporation can additionally be strengthened

    Living and Working in a Healthy Environment: How Sensor Research in Flanders can Help Measure and Monitor Exposure to Certain Environmental Factors

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    People's daily living environment has an important influence on their physical and mental health. That living environment consists of many different components, as it is both a spatial or physical environment, and the result of many other processes (socio-cultural, economic context and individual characteristics and lifestyles). Overall, the pressure on the physical environment is very high, especially in densely populated and highly urbanised area’s such as Flanders, the northern part of Belgium. In urban environments, for instance, many spatial demands come together (space for housing, economy, mobility, green and blue infrastructures, etc.). The spatial layout of our cities can influence our health (e.g. whether or not we live nearby green spaces or in an environment that promotes active mobility, social contacts, if there are sources that impact the air quality, etc.), and of course our behaviour. The relation between health, living and working environment and spatial planning is complex. Therefore, the Flemish Department of Environment & Spatial Development has prepared a framework in 2019 to better capture that complex relationship, which we will briefly discuss in this paper. Broadly speaking, a policy committed to healthy environments may choose to make interventions that protect people's health from certain external factors (e.g. air pollution or environmental noise) or that enable and promote healthy lifestyles (e.g. physical activity, food,…). Next to that, providing citizens with up to date information is an important task of the government. In this paper, we discuss the research that the Environment and Health research team at the Flemish Department of Environment & Spatial Development conducts in order to measure human exposure to certain factors via sensors. Those particular factors were chosen mainly because they are part of themes around which the Flemish Department can make policy. We will consider three ongoing cases: measuring the quality of the indoor environment in different types of semi-public locations (such as schools, residential care centres, cultural centres,…), measuring radiofrequency radiation from fixed transmitting antennas in urban environments and measuring noise pollution. Partnering with international research & development organizations such as IMEC (Interuniversity Microelectronics Centre) and VITO (Flemish Institute for Technological Research), they supplied us with innovative and high-quality sensor technology. The sensors can transmit their measurement data in real time and participating parties can track the data on dashboards allowing immediate feedback and action when necessary. The results are intended to feed further research. Although not all case studies are equally advanced, we will conclude each one with possible policy actions

    Urban Stress and Bicycle Infrastructure in the City of Osnabrück – Analysing Well-Being and Infrastructure Relationships in Streetscapes through a Triangulation Approach

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    Active mobility is a key factor in the mobility revolution and is thus elementary in combating the climate crisis. At the same time, however, much research is still needed to improve the situation of active mobility, especially regarding inhibiting factors in the choice of active modes of transport. Essential here is road users' positive and negative emotional experiences in different infrastructure settings. Due to high volumes and speeds of motorised traffic, high noise and pollution levels and a lack of greenery urban space, today is often associated with increased stress and an excess of stress-related diseases such as cardiovascular diseases, depression, or schizophrenia (Adli, 2017). Providing data and objectifying much-discussed issues such as perceived safety in transport infrastructure is essential for decision-making at the community level (Sørensen, 2009). Such data can provide evidence to refine traffic planning guidelines and improve public space for pedestrians and cyclists. It is therefore necessary to get a differentiated picture of social and ecological considerations in the mobility sector. The BMDV project “Emotion Sensing for (E-)Bicycle Safety and Mobility Comfort ESSEM” investigates the subjective perception of cyclists’ safety in urban traffic. With the help of iterative environmental and body-related data collection, stress points in the municipal cycling network are identified and analysed in the two model cities of Ludwigsburg and Osnabrück . The framework given in this study applies a triangulating approach that allows statements on individual “stress” utilising biological markers (skin conductivity, skin temperature) via a sensor wristband and through standardised questionnaires. In this way, vulnerable groups can be identified, which can be better taken into account in project development and planning. This study focuses on three “stress hotspots” in Osnabrück, considering different forms of bicycle infrastructure

    Design Studio Environment: Using Biophilic Patterns for Creative Performance

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    In design education, the architectural design studio environment is one of the most significant environments that should be a stimulator of creativity. It's known for the amount of time students spend there, so it's considered their second home. Researchers aspire to create a unique and different design studio environment that motivates students’ creativity. This study presents the biophilia theory as a technique that generates a creative design studio environment. The purpose is to determine the applicability of the biophilic design theory patterns to the design studio environment, which in turn has an impact on motivating the students' creativity. The research method will be conducted through a comprehensive analysis of several world- famous architectural schools, by understanding the application of the principles of nature and connecting them with biophilic patterns. As a result, the research has yielded applicable criteria for biophilic patterns in existing design studios

    Making Green Real – How to Promote Greenery in Real Estate Development

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    Climate change and rising temperatures particularly affect the built environment and intensify the Urban Heat Island (UHI) effect in cities. Nature-based solutions can have a balancing function and reduce overheating. However, greenery still receives too little attention in architecture and is added as an additional element at the end of the planning phase or even after the building has been constructed. For a climate resilient urban development in the future, in addition to a change in processes, a change in real estate development and in the project management is necessary. At least, three preconditions must be met for this to happen: • Sound knowledge base: Many studies already exist proving the positive effects of nature-based solutions for densely built cities. However, the knowledge transfer to real estate companies is still insufficient as they require precise and site-specific information showing effectiveness of greenery on microclimate, building envelope and indoor temperature. At best, analyses apply a system view and consider interrelations with water and energy. • Greenery-friendly planning framework: Real estate development takes place in compliance with local planning standards and procedures. Planning strategies and regulations, standards, urban development contracts and funding programmes strongly influence urban design and development and hereby have great potential to promote greening. • Integrated mindset: In architecture and real estate development, it is still not standard to include greenery and nature-based solutions in design, planning and construction. Building optimization also includes greening. Thus, it needs an integrated mindset regarding greenery as natural part of architecture. This requires more awareness and knowledge about climate change and the benefits of nature-based solutions on quality of life and value of real estates in the long run. The paper summarizes the experience of an interdisciplinary cooperation in the research project GreenDeal4Real and addresses all three aspects in detail. Analyses of the planning framework in Vienna and impacts of greening measures on the microclimate are described and general conclusions for more green in real estate development are drawn

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