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Can spatial form support urban ecosystem services: representing patches and connectivity zones for bees using space syntax mehodology
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Architecture, Urban Design. (Spatial Analysis and Design (SAD))
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Architecture, Urban Design.
The Royal Swedish Academy of the Sciences.
2013 (English)In: Proceeding - 9th international space syntax symposium / [ed] Young, K., Park, H. and Seo, H., Sejong University Press , 2013Conference paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Within the broad research field of sustainable urban development, we can identify a movement from a first generation of research and practice, primarily addressing mitigation strategies, to a second generation, broadening the field to also encompass strategies of adaptation. Most sustainable urban growth concepts (e.g. new urbanism, urban containment and smart growth) built on the findings from the first generation of research and have a strong focus on the transport-land use relation, aiming atreducing private (car) mobility and related CO2- emissions and air pollution. Research shows that higher density, land-use diversity and pedestrian-friendly designs generally reduce trip rates and encourage non-car mobility, although the results are still ambiguous (Colding et al, forthcoming). Creeping global environmental changes, natural catastrophes and volatile financial markets, highlight the need to put emphasis also on strategies of adaptation as a complement to environmental mitigation strategies of cities (Vale et al 2005). This type of research concerns the understanding of the resilience of urban systems in which urban systems are seen as integrated social-ecological systems, bridging the ancient dichotomy between human and ecological systems. Research shows that green spaces and its fragmentation are crucial for biodiversity and other ecosystem services. One of the most relevant variables affecting landscape fragmentation is population density (Jaeger 2000). Indeed, urban sprawl causes directly land cover changes at the urban fringe and impacts indirectly on the rural landscape progressively further away from the urban fringe by fragmenting both agricultural areas and woodlands (Salvati et al 2012). However, city compactness and higher densities decrease the amount and access to green space within cities (Pauleit et al 2005, Burton 2000).

This paper especially focus on green space and its fragmentation and accessibility within cities and combine the human perspective on green space with the landscape ecological perspective in the aim to develop knowledge that opens for integration of eco-system design in urban design, moving towards an expanded professional practice of social-ecological urban design. To include the ecological perspective we use effective mesh density, which is a direct quantitative expression of landscape connectivity (Jaeger 2000) and biotope diversity (Marini et al 2010). To include the human perspective we build on the methods to measure cognitive accessibility developed within Space syntax research (Hillier 1996) and especially the measures proposed by Ståhle et al (2005, 2008) in which besides the measure of distance, also a measure of attraction is introduced. Through this we aim to include the described ecological measures in the framework of Space syntax, enabling us to use accessible green space both from a human and an ecological perspective. Important stepping-stone structures within the network (patches and links with more importance from one or both perspectives) can be traced and interventions can be proposed to improve (parts of) the system. This paper presents, firstly, a conceptual discussion on this topic and secondly, results from a study in Stockholm showing in principle the possibility of a spatial morphology of social-ecological urban systems

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Sejong University Press , 2013.
Keyword [en]
Design Synthesis, generative urban design, Neural N etworks, Complex systems, GeoComputation, Space Syntax
National Category
Other Engineering and Technologies not elsewhere specified
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-138539ISBN: 978-89-86177-21-3OAI: diva2:681305
9th International Space Syntax Symposium

QC 20140319

Available from: 2013-12-19 Created: 2013-12-19 Last updated: 2014-03-19Bibliographically approved

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