Monday, April 16, 2012

Tackling eco-urbanity: Housing and placemaking at the urban edge

by A.Senem DEVİREN

With more than half of the world population is now living in urban settlements, urban growth is almost inevitable. But our cities are not growing in healthier and ecological ways, they are ‘sprawling’. Much of this sprawl is a result of new housing developments and constructions for their related services, occurring rapidly one after the other at urban peripheries. There are several principles and guidelines offered for ‘ecologic’ urban planning and ‘eco’ or ‘green’ building design. However, most of these guidelines are rigid, contemporary market-driven and global ‘checklists’ with no ability to inform local urban design and interdisciplinary practice and polarizing the differences in design disciplines with their incompetent content that is far from addressing the symbolically, ecologically and functionally powered interrelations between built environments and nature. This paper addresses ecological housing design and planning at urban edges by proposing an updated urban design strategy –the placemaking strategy- and testing its role in monitoring eco-urban development with actual case studies on two ecological settlements at the urban edge of Linz, Austria. The study investigates and highlights the importance of architecture and landscape combined comprehensive urban design strategy to preserve land, prevent consumption in all terms, to utilize the on-site resources, and use of renewable energy sources, to improve functional and social performance of urban contexts at urban edges and maintain healthy living conditions for the inhabitants for longer term goals of livability and sustainability.

more about sustainable city:


Strategy for Sustainable Urban Development: A Case Study of Urmia City, Iran

German Village Becomes Model for Renewable Energy

SOM wins Beijing Bohai Innovation City Master Plan Competition

Lessons from Freiburg on Creating a Sustainable Urban Community

The Münster Application for the European Green Capital Award

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