Pianificazione urbanistica ed efficienza energetica: analisi e valutazione della performance energetica urbana


This research explores the relationship between energy, land use and urban planning in the context of climate change risks. The ambition is to contribute to the definition of new planning procedures and tools addressed to urban sustainability and low-carbon urban systems. Climate change represents one of the major challenge of the 21st century. To face climate risks, imperative actions must be taken in cities, where high energy consumptions and GHG emissions are produced. Moreover, for their high concentration of people and assets, urbanized areas are also vulnerable to climate change impacts. Therefore, cities are perceived to show a dual nature in that they are a major cause of climate change and at risks of its impacts. In this perspective, the purpose of this research is the development of an integrated planning tool to analyze and assess the urban energy performance of neighborhoods. The tool is aimed at supporting policy makers and urban planners in the process of development of site-specific strategies to gain overall energy efficiency in urban areas. The analytical-evaluating tool developed in this research is organized in two stages. The former provides an integrated analytical energy model for the assessment of urban energy consumption of neighborhoods, including the most energy intensive sectors of urban systems: buildings, transport and public lighting. Results are represented at urban scale through energy maps, developed in GIS, which allows the integration between energy evaluations and spatial planning. In the second stage, the energy model is used for the evaluation of urban strategies, inclusive of energy issues, on the three sectors through the configuration of several scenarios. In particular, the drivers that may steer changes in the urban contexts from an energy perspective have been identified. The changes represent a range of options whose feasibility and efficiency are assessed through the configuration of planning scenarios. The combination of urban energy mapping and scenario analysis allows to determine integrated planning energy strategies and to support sustainable political choices on existent urban areas. A third stage, that extends the function of the previous ones, may be considered. This stage comprises easy-sharing tools, aimed at integrating, simplifying and sharing the findings from the analytical and evaluating stages. The city of Catania, in southern Italy, has been selected as case study. For its characteristics the city may be considered as representative of many others meridional Italian cities. Particularly, the methodology has been applied to Nesima Superiore neighborhood, which was built in the framework of INA CASA, a post war reconstruction strategy aiming at providing a healthy house to inhabitants. Despite the high ambitions of the plan, at present the neighborhood is characterized by the lack of public facilities and low construction features in buildings. Through the comparison of scenarios, it follows that an improvement of the whole urban energy performance is achievable. In particular, results for the case study show that a change in the energy profile of the neighborhood is achievable by implementing several peculiar measures. Since buildings represent the most energy intensive sector, measures aimed at retrofitting the building stock result significantly efficient. Along with buildings, transport sector offers potentials for improving the urban energy performance if transformations in the fields of land use and infrastructures occur. The case analyzed confirms the potential to improve the energy performance of urban areas towards sustainability, by including innovative tools and methods into spatial planning. This play a coordinating role for the multiple site-specific strategies and tailored measures, enabling the achievement of holistic results that include awareness of the interrelations and potential trade-offs among components and systems at stake in urban areas

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