- Thinking of public spaces for low carbon cities    click here to open paper content1522 kb
by    Pinto, Ana Júlia & Remesar, Antoni | ajulia.pinto@gmail.com   click here to send an email to the auther(s) of this paper
Short Outline
Territorial fragmentation, weak accessibility and mono-functionality are strongly linked to an increase in carbon emission. Public spaces have to be planned as instruments of finding solutions to these problems, opening the way to low carbon cities.
The urban structure hosts an enormous variety of factors and interactions that, on one hand, reveal its interest and uniqueness but, on the other hand, leads to some of today’s territorial cohesion problems. Some of these problems are strongly related to the increase of carbon emissions in the cities, such as: the fragmentation of urban spaces and important natural structures; weak and inadequate connectivity / accessibilities within the cities; and predominantly mono-functional urban spaces.
Public spaces, as territories of common use and collective appropriation, have a fundamental role in the urban structure and city life, as they allow formal and environmental continuity, accessibility, visibility, contributing to the reinforcement of social and economical centralities.
Therefore it is fundamental to think of public spaces as important instruments on finding solutions to the named problems, opening the way to low carbon cities. It is needed to support the planning of public spaces in a network logic, trying to achieve guiding principles as (1) adequate biophysical integration of these spaces in the natural structure, (2) promotion of formal urban design connectivity in the urban space, (3) creation of good accessibilities namely through non motorized transport modes (green modes), promoting the “car free cities” concept, (4) development of multifunctional urban spaces, providing a coherent land mix use, so that people have easy access to the daily activities, (5) use of sustainable materials and technologies in public spaces.
This study was held in Barrio de la Mina, a periphery neighbourhood of Barcelona, in Spain, where the social, economic and environmental problems are the major cause of it weak connectivity with the city. The main goal was to evaluate the actual stage of the public spaces network and establish guidelines to decrease the carbon emissions.
Public Space; Low Carbon Cities; Territorial Cohesion; Urban Space.
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