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lecture 5

Course Code
Susannah Bunce

of 3
- contested ideas (varying between opinions and ideas)
- cities are complicated/complex systems (lots of things happening at the same time)
- spatial patterns of the urban society
- computers/technology (GIS) to analyze geographical patterns
- policy: help maintain/govern the city on different levels
- investment in rebuilding of our city as city system: inefficient in energy uses
- rebuilding urban form to reconstruct
- city = opportunity for change
Sustainable Cities Ideas
- over 50% of world population
- ability to maintain sustainable life with low/shared uses
- sustainable development = development that meets the needs of the present without
compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs
- development that improves the long-term health of human and ecological systems
- inter-generational equity: inequitable for g3eneration to use up cheap resources
- intra-generation equity: disparities in wealth increasing, poor countries are unable to use
a lot of resources, but are more damaging
- transfrontier responsibility: if developed world makes/uses all of the resources/pollution,
catch up
- green infrastructure & buildings (e: 25-50%, c: 33-39%, w: 40%, s: 70%)
urban sustainability issues [measures of ecological footprint]
energy use - Bill Reese 1990s, how much land
CO2 emissions area used to supply products used
water consumption within daily life
resource consumption - reduce consumption levels to
waste production be sustainable
storm water surges
Can policy and city planning actually help make cities more sustainable?
urban form: the spatial arrangement of activities in a city, the resulting spatial flows of
people, goods, and information, and the physical features which shape those activities,
including buildings, shapes, surfaces, transport and other infrastructure systems (Kevin
Lynch, Good City Form, 1996)
Æ must include cyclical and secular (once) changes in above arrangements, as well as
measurements of their density and interrelationships
- Reagent Park (social housing) - unsuccessful, earlier solutions to 'urban problems'
- pattern: affects lifestyle and way/form of transportation
- Toronto = high density mixed change in urban form, segregated land uses ('all-in-one'),
separated residential/shopping/jobs (consumes a lot of land and more spread out but more
travel required)
suburbs - designed upon small families (1 car, 1 mother/father/son or daughter)
# of cars per household, per/km travelled increasing .'. congestion
- urban form = key variable in urban sustainability
- urban density, land use mix, travel patterns = key determinants of energy consumption
problems with urban sprawl
high costs for infrastructure (lower the density, higher the costs)
energy intensity
automobile dependence
loss of community - never 'run into' neighbours
environmental damage, farm land loss
health issues - obesity within suburban versus inner city regions
municipal fragmentation - inequity
- pattern of consumption accommodates cars - takes up land
international debate
- EU Green Paper 1990: stop sprawl, promote compact cities, encourage traditional cities,
no suburbs with segregated land use [public transit - easier slower population growth/care
ownership, traditions in apartment buildings]
- Rio Earth Summit 1992 (Local Agenda 21): municipal scale
- Kyoto Protocol 1996: climate change and greenhouse gas agreement
- UN Habitat-Declaration on Human Settlements, Istanbul 1996
- Copenhagen COP15 2009
-- Bridging the Gap - encouraging more sustainable transformation for cities
- CO2 emissions from development: transportation (24% (16.7% in road) 2006 world CO2
emissions from fossil fuel combustion)/residential
energy and urban sustainability
- urban form can increase or decrease energy consumption greatly - with low-density cities
consuming more than double the energy per capita than high-density cities
- main energy use: transport, heating and cooling
design concepts for more sustainable urban form
1. compact cities
- consumes less land
- reduces travel times
- reduces energy consumption (e.g. district heating)
- promotes public transit
- revitalizes inner-city areas - abandoned areas within core
'urban renaissance' policies of the UK, 'Places to Grow'/Greenbelt in Ontario
- restrict urban growth
growth boundaries, intensification, brownfield redevelopment (polluted areas to be
redesigned/remediated for new urban district)
- high rise buildings are more energy intensive
- energy use of heating, cooling, and waste management may be high per capita in very high-
density settlements
- urban form and patterns of development may be of greater importance than simple
- most efficient is not low density/very high density (e.g. Hong Kong) but medium densities
(e.g. central Toronto or central Stockholm) -- land uses
- current trends = dispersion of population outwards, stopping urban growth will be very
difficult (residential preferences for low density, semi-rural living environment)
-- concentrated deconcentration
2, sustainable transport
- reliance on car use
- in low-density cities, gasoline use is much higher (Newman & Kenworthy)
- sustainable urban forms would allow less car use
3. higher densities
- energy intensity is off scale, need to have higher density urban places
- critical variable
- above certain densities/thresholds, certain technologies/activities become viable
- public transit, speciality stores, operas, specialized restaurants, etc
- reductions of density were a key planning goal in mid 20th century (overcrowding Æ
zoning low-density suburban areas, cars)
- density affects possibility to run public transit system
4. mixed land uses
- possibility of reducing the need for travel if compatible land uses are allowed to mix
- Jane Jacobs - mix/diversify fosters vitality, safety, diversity, and healthy economic function
- but 20th century land-use planning separated land uses
5. diversity (different kinds of residential designs)
6. passive solar design
- most cost efficient way of reducing energy consumption
- urban form is critical to passive solar because of building orientation, building shape,
blocking of sunlight
7. greening
- to protect water systems, reduce storm water surges (channelled into sewer system --
suburbs designed with rainwater collection swails), mitigate urban heat island effects, and
provide recreation spaces
programs to achieve these urban form values
neotraditional development (aka New Urbanism): urban villages, transit villages, Transit
Oriented Development
urban containment: Places to Grow, Urban Growth Boundaries, Greenbelts Growth
Management, Smart Growth
compact city: EU, high-density mixed-use cities
eco-city: greening, passive solar, LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design)
- leisure/utilitarian walking
Toronto Region examples
- Places to Grow
- Greenbelt
- new urbanism (subdivisions about compact/mixed-use places)
- intensification (PPS) - decreases land consumption, create walkable 'urban' places with ix
of uses, nodes that can be efficiently served by public service, ___________
- brownfields redevelopment
- stormwater management
- green roofs
- nodes and corridors - new development in transit-oriented walkable nodes (TOD)
connected by high capacity transit in corridors
- sustainable neighbourhoods