Urban Regeneration: Challenges and Opportunities for the Landscape

A special issue of Land (ISSN 2073-445X). This special issue belongs to the section "Urban Contexts and Urban-Rural Interactions".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 10 June 2024 | Viewed by 6310

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
DARTE Department, University of Reggio Calabria “Mediterranea”, 89124 Reggio Calabria, Italy
Interests: urban and territorial planning; strategic plan; urban regeneration; transportation and port infrastructure policies; climate adaptation plans and ecosystem services

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Guest Editor
Department of Planning, Design and Technology of Architecture, Sapienza University of Rome, 00196 Rome, Italy
Interests: urban and territorial planning; urban regeneration; public space and cultural heritage; public city and urban well-being; territorial government tools and policies; local plan and ecological transition
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor
Faculty of Applied Science, The University of British Columbia (UBC) Okanagan, Kelowna, BC V1V 1V7, Canada
Interests: digital twins; transformational land use and smart cities; resilient planning; climate challenges and environmental studies
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor
Faculty of Engineering and Architecture, University of Enna “Kore”, 94100 Enna, Italy
Interests: urban regeneration; environment change and planning; land and natural resource planning; strategic planning

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Guest Editor
Department of Planning, Design, Architecture Technology, Sapienza University of Rome, 00196 Rome, Italy
Interests: urban and territorial planning; urban regeneration; public spaces and cultural heritage; climate-proof planning; local plan and urban resilience
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor
Department of Planning, Design, Architecture Technology, Sapienza University of Rome, 00185 Rome, Italy
Interests: urban, territorial and landscape planning; landscape architecture; cultural and natural resources; urban regeneration; green and public spaces; land use, land take and ecosystem services

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Numerous aspects come into play when addressing the issues of urban regeneration and various interventions are necessary to make cities resilient and ready to respond to environmental, economic, and social challenges. Resilience is understood as a "transversal condition" in the reorganization of a city, as the ability to deal with adverse events and externalities is induced by programmatic choices that will significantly change the reference structures and scenarios.

The complexity of the new urban scenarios is reflected in the increased difficulty both of understanding and describing the connotations of the contemporary city and of thinking of new policies capable of capturing the signals of change and managing various aspects.

The city was almost always saturated and not able to update the range of services and the offer of public spaces in the past, which is something that has changed in recent times. Above all, cities that show a historical delay in the adaptation of public spaces, services, and collective equipment are unprepared at present because they are unable to keep up with the speed of change. It is essential to recognize the changing demand for public spaces, which corresponds to the evolution of living models, to analyze the potential of the growing diffusion of digital technology and the availability of local spaces in the social transition towards the future city. Consequently, this will enable an investigation on how the development of new digital media spaces influences design.

The Special Issue focuses on welfare tools, the supply of services and mobility, the landscape standard, the environment, the restoration of the landscape, historic architecture, and cultural heritage. The enhancement of the landscape as an opportunity to regenerate cities.

How important is space in the age of advanced technology and what are the expected requirements of its users in terms of quality, shape, size, and function?

Are one function and one type of user enough? Is the traditional organization of spaces still feasible, and what are the uses and symbols? Above all, is the space residual (what remains of the physical commitment of roads, public buildings, and private spaces) "public" or is it an urban connective that both welds and cuts through the city and places demands on it?

We now turn our attention away from the undifferentiated demand for basic services and towards the increasingly diversified almost individual requests, the hyper-technologies.

Measures and policies to activate city modernization processes can be implemented through the urban regeneration interventions envisaged by the new European programming

In the transition towards the era of prevailing technology, the era of the smart city, urban public spaces and services must renew themselves by looking at the challenges that the contemporary world poses and that the future demands by developing proactive performing, and intelligent cities. At the same time, the city must be resilient.

Therefore, the cities in which we live today must renew themselves and face the complexity of the issues that arise by the fact that they are "contemporary" cities, cities of change. However, there exists a structural gap: the city is unable to follow the "times" and the speed of the social and physical transformations of the city itself.

In the absence of a punctual and adequate design response, the city undergoes planning inertia, the lack of adequate redevelopment interventions, and the rapid extension of the residential, commercial, industrial, and touristic fabric. Cities and territories suffer and experience dilemmas and profound transformations: segregation, immigration, integration, the density and heterogeneity of the urban settlement, the transformations of the use of time and space of communities and cities, urbanization and sprawl, mobility and new populations in transit, being perpetually in crisis, the environmental paradigm, the new information and communication technologies, and the effect of not being a city.

This call to transform the city will open a discussion on the current issues that animate the scientific debate and the urban/territorial policy agenda.

The idea of developing a Special Issue arose from a variety of issues addressed in the context of the debate on urban regeneration and its relationship to territory, landscape, and current and future transformations.

The topic has in fact solicited points of reflection and in-depth analysis in numerous contexts, welcoming interesting multidisciplinary contributions from teachers and PhD students, which can be studied in depth and published because of their scientific contributions to the topics.

The goal of this Special Issue is to collect papers (original research articles and review papers) that provide insights into the advances in the models of urban regeneration and innovative approaches for resilience for the enhancement of the landscape as an opportunity to regenerate cities.

This Special Issue will welcome manuscripts that link to the following themes:

  • PNRR and urban regeneration best practices for landscape enhancement;
  • Public spaces and urban landscape;
  • Welfare in urban regeneration; public urban policy for identity and landscape;
  • Accessibility and sustainable mobility, prerequisites for enhancing the urban landscape as it changes;
  • Cultural heritage and landscape;
  • Architecture and new social relations and the landscape of urban connections;
  • Not only an ecological transition: the challenges of the landscape;
  • Landscape and urban planning for climate-proofing
  • Landscape development amongst competing land uses;
  • Sustainable and inclusive design of open spaces;
  • Multifunctional role of green infrastructures in the landscape urban regeneration;
  • The role ecosystem services play in landscape planning;
  • Landscape identity and community involvement.

We look forward to receiving your original research articles and reviews.

Prof. Dr. Francesca Moraci
Prof. Dr. Laura Ricci
Prof. Dr. Kh Md Nahiduzzaman
Prof. Dr. Celestina Fazia
Prof. Dr. Carmela Mariano
Dr. Francesca Perrone
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Land is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • urban regeneration for landscape, best practices
  • public spaces and urban landscape, social animation
  • cultural heritage and landscape
  • landscape, architecture, and new social relations
  • land, landscapes, risk management
  • landscape enhancement
  • the role ecosystem services play in landscape planning
  • energy and the environment: the challenges of the landscape
  • landscape and urban planning for climate-proofing
  • landscape development
  • management and competing land uses
  • sustainable and inclusive design of open spaces
  • role of green infrastructures
  • landscape urban regeneration
  • ecosystem services in landscape planning
  • landscape identity and community involvement
  • welfare in urban regeneration, public urban policy for identity and landscape
  • accessibility and sustainable mobility, prerequisites for enhancing the urban landscape as it changes.

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

22 pages, 1281 KiB  
Article
Counteract Soil Consumption through Ecosystem Services and Landscape Restoration for an Efficient Urban Regeneration
by Celestina Fazia, Kh Md Nahiduzzaman, Baqer Al-Ramadan, Adel Aldosary and Francesca Moraci
Land 2024, 13(3), 323; https://doi.org/10.3390/land13030323 - 2 Mar 2024
Viewed by 1311
Abstract
Soil consumption, marked by the expansion of artificial land cover for residential, productive, and infrastructural purposes, is a concerning trend in Italy, as revealed by the Copernicus land monitoring program. The issue is exacerbated by agricultural intensification and urbanization, particularly affecting regions like [...] Read more.
Soil consumption, marked by the expansion of artificial land cover for residential, productive, and infrastructural purposes, is a concerning trend in Italy, as revealed by the Copernicus land monitoring program. The issue is exacerbated by agricultural intensification and urbanization, particularly affecting regions like Lombardia and Piemonte. However, Sicilia, Abruzzo, and Lazio experience notable increases in processes of abandonment and re-naturalization. Data from Ispra highlights the need for in-depth study, especially in regions like Sicilia, where contrasting phenomena occur. This study utilizes Ispra data to monitor and formulate strategies for mitigating soil consumption and safeguarding ecosystem services. The research aligns with objectives related to combating climate change and facilitating the ecological transition of territories. The complexity of land consumption, influenced by interdependent factors, is evident in the achieved results. Effective strategies for containment and re-naturalization involve the implementation of town planning regulations and multi-level behavioral pathways. This study aims to identify contextual actions that can reduce land consumption, promote de-impermeabilization, and encourage re-naturalization, focusing on enhancing ecosystem services in land use activities. Thus, it focuses on understanding the contributions of ecosystem services, landscape restoration and green infrastructure on climate mitigation, and a reduction in land consumption in urban regeneration processes. As well, through open-source systems, it is important to monitor in real time the trend of the quantity of factors and variables and the state of the environment, and the reasons to intervene with systemic strategies and actions constitutes another lens of focus. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Regeneration: Challenges and Opportunities for the Landscape)
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14 pages, 1354 KiB  
Article
Placing Urban Renewal in the Context of the Resilience Adaptive Cycle
by Lars Marcus and Johan Colding
Land 2024, 13(1), 8; https://doi.org/10.3390/land13010008 - 19 Dec 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1307
Abstract
Resilience thinking provides valuable insights into the dynamics of complex adaptive systems. To achieve resilience in urban systems, it can be fruitful to delve into the intricacies of resilience processes. This paper theorizes about how the specific characteristics of resilient systems can be [...] Read more.
Resilience thinking provides valuable insights into the dynamics of complex adaptive systems. To achieve resilience in urban systems, it can be fruitful to delve into the intricacies of resilience processes. This paper theorizes about how the specific characteristics of resilient systems can be integrated into the spatial design of cities. Emphasizing the importance of the built form and spatial systems in maintaining order within urban processes, we focus on how adaptive renewal cycles can be applied to various systems and dimensions where urban change, adaptation, and renewal occur. The paper identifies key resilient system characteristics applicable to urban spatial form and contextualizes urban renewal within the adaptive renewal cycle—a framework originally developed to capture temporal and spatial ecosystem dynamics. We integrate insights within ‘space syntax theory’, theorizing about how cities renew themselves over space and time. We discuss instances of ‘compressed resilience’ and the challenges posed by the ‘tyranny of small decisions’ in urban planning and development. In conclusion, we identify future research directions in the theory of spatial morphology and resilient urban systems, emphasizing the need for a deeper understanding of the interplay between urban processes, urban form, resilience, and adaptive renewal. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Regeneration: Challenges and Opportunities for the Landscape)
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25 pages, 4195 KiB  
Article
From Urban Challenges to “ClimaEquitable” Opportunities: Enhancing Resilience with Urban Welfare
by Marsia Marino
Land 2023, 12(12), 2157; https://doi.org/10.3390/land12122157 - 12 Dec 2023
Viewed by 1027
Abstract
From the perspective of the scientific-disciplinary debate within urban planning, this research addresses the theme of the “new urban question” resulting from environmental concerns related to the climate crisis and socioeconomic issues that have now become structural. It then delves into the connection [...] Read more.
From the perspective of the scientific-disciplinary debate within urban planning, this research addresses the theme of the “new urban question” resulting from environmental concerns related to the climate crisis and socioeconomic issues that have now become structural. It then delves into the connection between urban environment quality and quality of life, ultimately questioning the role that territorial governance tools play in positively influencing the perception of well-being in cities. The overall objective of this contribution is to define an interpretative framework for experimental approaches in territorial governance. This overarching objective is articulated in the definition of two specific outcomes, pursued through an inductive methodology. The first one involves establishing an initial set of urban welfare indicators; the second entails defining strategies for planning, designing, and regenerating the public components of the city that could influence the indicators. Both outcomes are designed to be exportable to different territorial contexts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Regeneration: Challenges and Opportunities for the Landscape)
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19 pages, 1525 KiB  
Article
Cultural Landscape as a Resource for Urban Regeneration in Rupea (Romania)
by Georgeta Gabriela Rățulea, Codrina Csesznek, Mariana Borcoman and Daniela Sorea
Land 2023, 12(11), 1985; https://doi.org/10.3390/land12111985 - 29 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1032
Abstract
Cultural heritage plays a key role in communities’ sustainable development. The culture-led development highlights the local cultural resources and specifics while being assisted by contemporary tourist interest in niche offers. At the same time, culture-led development could reinforce a process of urban regeneration. [...] Read more.
Cultural heritage plays a key role in communities’ sustainable development. The culture-led development highlights the local cultural resources and specifics while being assisted by contemporary tourist interest in niche offers. At the same time, culture-led development could reinforce a process of urban regeneration. The purpose of this paper is to highlight the urban regeneration potential of culture-led development in the case of a small town from Transylvania (Romania), Rupea, by identifying local characteristics that define this town and its surroundings as a cultural landscape and also by suggesting methods for capitalizing on this cultural landscape in heritage tourism. Data collected from six interviews with cultural stakeholders, bibliographic research on archaeological discoveries, and local tourism potential, as well as through ethnographic methods, support the approach of the Rupea area as a cultural landscape. The main dimensions of this cultural landscape are the interethnic character of the area and the multitude of archaeological discoveries that indicate its habitation in the Paleolithic. Tourist capitalization could support the urban regeneration of Rupea in a culture-led development approach by arranging routes that highlight the specifics of the Romanian, Saxon, Hungarian, and mixed villages in the Rupea area and/or the points of archaeological interest. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Regeneration: Challenges and Opportunities for the Landscape)
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Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Title: Landscape implications from urban regeneration policies
Author: Silva
Highlights: Urban regeneration models in fragile European economies have a strong impact on urban landscapes. The misuse of technical definitions needs to be addressed, to contribute to a better qualified landscape. Although many of the urban policies are conducted under the EU umbrella, its broader scope shrinks as it gets to site interventions, losing the broader impact in terms of landscape.

Title: Counteract soil consumption through ecosystem services and landscape restoration for an efficient urban regeneration
Author: Fazia
Highlights: soil consumption and ecosystem services; landscape restoration for an efficient urban regeneration; case study international; conclusions.

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