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Publication Date

August 2022

Abstract

How can the impact of a world pandemic accelerate the desire to create more functional and ecological public spaces in urban environments?

Dorottya Bekesi 1

BURA Urbanism Amsterdam, 53 KNSM-Laan, Amsterdam, 1019 LB, The Netherlands

Planning a city has always reflected the cultural trends, the technological inventions as well as the world-wide crisis. For instance, new regulations were introduced during the Industrial Revolution for cleaner air, or urban hygiene systems were developed during the cholera epidemic of the 19th century.

Climate change is seen by many as the biggest challenge of the last decade, which is having a significant impact on urban landscapes. Since the spring of 2020, humanity must face a new global problem, the SARS-CoV-2, which greatly changed our way of living. Can the impact of the pandemic accelerate the desire to create better places for the residents while tackling climate change and biodiversity loss?

The research methods are exploratory and experimental, evaluated by a machine learning algorithm (logistic regression). The first part presents how the daily lifestyle has changed as a result of COVID-19. In relation to what are the new social needs for urban public spaces, parks, green- and waterways, and transport. The second part of the research explores the paradoxes that make it difficult for landscape architects to find the balance between current human needs and long-term climate change mitigation goals.

Through the evaluation, the Purmerend waterlandkwartier masterplan – a Dutch redevelopment project in the urban realm – will be presented, which uses the opportunities explored in the research. The conclusion provides answers on how we can make public health needs and climate- and biodiversity emergency requirements equally important in the design process..

Reference

- Gehl, 2011 Gehl, J. Life between buildings — Using public space Washington DC, Island Press, 2011

- Berdejo‐Espinola, V., Suárez‐Castro, A. F., Amano, T., Fielding, K. S., Oh, R. R. Y., & Fuller, R. A. (2021). Urban green space use during a time of stress: A case study during the COVID‐19 pandemic in Brisbane, Australia. People and Nature.

- El Khateeb, S., & Shawket, I. M. (2022). A new perception; generating well-being urban public spaces after the era of pandemics. Developments in the Built Environment, 9, 100065.

- The Future of Our Cities – ArchDaily x LifeCycles – Panel Discussion; Speakers: Kim Van Hoslbeke – Skidmore Owings & Merrill – New York, Arjan Dingste – UNStudio – Amsterdam, Jacob Kurek – Henning Larsen – Copenhagen (accessed on 15 May 2021) Available online: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xHCpyg5Nv2I

- Grant, J. What Cities Can Learn from Lockdown About Planning for Life After the Coronavirus Pandemic. The Conversation. 2020. (accessed on 30 November 2021) Available online: https://theconversation.com/what-cities-can-learn-from-lockdown-about-planning-for-life-after-thecoronavirus-pandemic-136699

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