GRM 2010 GRM 2011

Abstract Details

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Title of Paper:
How can we learn from traditional settlement planning design in our quest for urban sustainability?
Paper Proposal Text :
What needs to be done to ensure that current and future urban environments are better planned and designed to meet the requirements of the three pillars of sustainability; social, economic and environmental. This issue remains one of the biggest challenges facing urban designers, planners, city developers, and policy makers in the 21st century. Improvements in methodologies for measuring and capturing data for the sustainability indicators (social, economic and environmental) means there is now a wealth of accurate and reliable approaches to assess sustainability levels. However the majority of these indicators focus on one aspect of sustainability at a time. An understanding of these issues in a unified approach is required. This research draws on the power of geographical information systems to investigate the multiple sustainability indictor datasets. It pulls together the datasets into a unified interactive system, which enabled the examination of the complex interconnectedness between urban physical characteristics, growing diversity of lifestyles and NI, across scales. At a smaller scale, the research demonstrated that successful places work as system of interconnected sets of activities. The larger scale analysis consisted of an examination of the relationship between active travel and road network, as well as three measures of centrality (straightness, closeness and betweeness). The findings revealed that activity networks are more complex than is depicted in traditional spatial planning networks. These results have important implications on determining natural strategies of urban planning and design.
Keywords: Traditional planning design, Sustainable environments, National Indicators, GIS, centrality, lifestyles