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Urban Planning and Built Environment (Closed)

A topical collection in Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This collection belongs to the section "Sustainable Urban and Rural Development".

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Guest Editor
School of Human Settlements and Civil Engineering, Xi'an Jiaotong University, Xi'an 710049, China
Interests: urban heat island; sustainable urban development; green building
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Nikken Sekkei Research Institute, Mitsuwa Ogawamachi Bldg. 3F-7-1 Kanda Ogawamachi, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Interests: smart community planning; smart building management
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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1. School of Architecture, Southeast University, Nanjing 210096, China
2. Global Centre for Clean Air Research (GCARE), Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences, University of Surrey, Guildford GU2 7XH, UK
Interests: building environment and control; air quality and health; urban environment and design; fast prediction of built environment
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
School of Human Settlements and Civil Engineering, Xi’an Jiaotong University, Xi'an 710049, China
Interests: environmental control, ventilation, relics preservation
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Topical Collection Information

Dear Colleague,

The high density of building development in big cities is increasing population density, leading to the change of urban typology, traffic demand, land surface coverage, and the urban microclimate. Meanwhile, climate change is affecting building energy consumption, and heat emission from buildings is accelerating urban climate change. Currently, the mechanisms of interactions among urban planning, urban climate change, and building energy consumption are attracting more and more attention from academics. Studies to mitigate the urban heat island phenomenon usually rely on the introduction of cool material, heat emission reduction, vegetation from a building-scale viewpoint, or strategies as an instruction of urban park systems, shifting to public transportation systems from a district-scale viewpoint. The current urban planning and building planning methods are mostly based on functional demand and the lack of a quantitative environmental method for evaluating the planning plans. Environmentally-friendly planning methods are yet to be discussed, such as making an effective network of cool spots and the wind path at community scale and district scale. This is an optimal approach, with synergies among various elements and solutions interactively considering existing community structures, energy systems for different building types, traffic strategies, greenery renovation possibility, and city typologies. Studies on environmental urban planning and building design facing the problems occurring in high developed cities are expected for this Special Issue. Papers can be reviews, meta-analyses, case studies, and original research relevant to environmental, ecological, biological, policy, human behaviors, development, and economic or technological aspects of urban sustainability

Dr. Yupeng Wang
Dr. Liyang Fan
Dr. Shijie Cao
Dr. Xilian Luo
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • Urban climate change
  • Urban heat island
  • Urban ventilation
  • Urban environmental measurements
  • Numerical modelling
  • Indoor and outdoor environmental comfort, safety and health
  • Smart building design and evaluation
  • Indoor environmental evaluation
  • Building energy consumption
  • Building heat emission
  • Control solutions

Published Papers (18 papers)

2023

Jump to: 2022, 2021, 2020

19 pages, 7380 KiB  
Article
Evaluating Daylighting and Preservation in Heritage Halls: Shading Retrofit Case Study at Chengdu Jiangnan Pavilion Street Site Museum
by Feng Shi, Bin Chang, Jiaxuan Li, Xinrong Li, Sheng Yang and Xilian Luo
Sustainability 2023, 15(24), 16929; https://doi.org/10.3390/su152416929 - 18 Dec 2023
Viewed by 741
Abstract
Site museums, focusing on immovable relics, are crucial for preserving unearthed artifacts by controlling their microenvironment. Artifacts are typically found in air–soil coupled environments. Current environmental control standards, designed for artifacts preserved in air, lead to diseases in soil artifacts due to inappropriate [...] Read more.
Site museums, focusing on immovable relics, are crucial for preserving unearthed artifacts by controlling their microenvironment. Artifacts are typically found in air–soil coupled environments. Current environmental control standards, designed for artifacts preserved in air, lead to diseases in soil artifacts due to inappropriate storage conditions. Taking Chengdu’s Jiangnan Guan Street as a case study, this research, through monitoring the on-site artifact environment and analyzing the correlation between diseases and the environment, proposes a tensioned membrane sunshade for the protection of artifacts under exposed roofs. Utilizing computational fluid dynamics and lighting simulations, we compared the environmental changes before and after the implementation of the plan. The results indicate: (1) direct sunlight from the exposed roof is the main cause of instability and disease in the soil–air coupled environment of the artifacts; (2) the sunshade significantly improves the storage environment of the artifacts, reducing the temperature difference at various locations from 12.8 °C to 0.3 °C and decreasing direct solar exposure by over 90%. Our proposed solution effectively improves the preservation environment of unearthed artifacts, offering new insights for the protection of the Chengdu Jiangnan Pavilion Street site. Full article
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25 pages, 15657 KiB  
Article
Research on Indoor Thermal Environment Analysis and Optimization Strategy of Rural Dwellings around Xi’an Based on PET Evaluation
by Yingtao Qi, Xiaodi Li, Yupeng Wang and Dian Zhou
Sustainability 2023, 15(10), 7889; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15107889 - 11 May 2023
Viewed by 1225
Abstract
Rural dwellings are an important group of residential buildings in China. With the continuous development of rural construction in China, the contradiction between the pursuit of a simple material space and the villagers’ demand for living quality, especially the indoor thermal comfort of [...] Read more.
Rural dwellings are an important group of residential buildings in China. With the continuous development of rural construction in China, the contradiction between the pursuit of a simple material space and the villagers’ demand for living quality, especially the indoor thermal comfort of rural dwellings, has become increasingly prominent. Therefore, it is particularly important to study the optimization strategies of the indoor thermal environment in rural dwellings. Current research on optimizing the indoor thermal environment of rural dwellings mainly focuses on analyzing the impact of individual factors, such as the envelope structures, building constructions, and building technology applications, but there is a lack of strategy development based on the comprehensive evaluation. This study aims to analyze the combined effects of multiple design elements on the indoor thermal environment and propose a comprehensive optimization strategy for rural dwellings. This study selects the rural dwellings around Xi’an as an example and establishes a basic model of the rural dwellings around Xi’an through field investigation and software simulation. Then, through univariate and compound-variable simulations, we analyze the influence of changes in passive architectural design indicators on the indoor physiological equivalent temperature (PET) of rural dwellings and obtain a comprehensive design indicator optimization strategy. This strategy can improve the indoor thermal comfort in winter and summer, especially in winter, achieving an average increase of 4.17 °C in the winter PET value and an average decrease of 0.66 °C in summer. This provides a reference for the design and renovation of rural dwellings in Xi’an and other rural areas in the cold regions of China. Full article
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24 pages, 8819 KiB  
Article
Evidence of Multi-Source Data Fusion on the Relationship between the Specific Urban Built Environment and Urban Vitality in Shenzhen
by Pei Zhang, Tao Zhang, Hiroatsu Fukuda and Moheng Ma
Sustainability 2023, 15(8), 6869; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15086869 - 19 Apr 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1557
Abstract
Urban vitality is the key element of sustainable urban development. This paper aims to explore the relationship between urban vitality and the existing built-up environment of the city of Shenzhen. The regression models with multi-source geographic datasets from 2021–2022 were applied to assess [...] Read more.
Urban vitality is the key element of sustainable urban development. This paper aims to explore the relationship between urban vitality and the existing built-up environment of the city of Shenzhen. The regression models with multi-source geographic datasets from 2021–2022 were applied to assess Shenzhen in three dimensions: economic, social, and cultural. The results show that Shenzhen’s vitality originates from multiple popular centers. Dense road networks, abundant transportation, and commercial, recreational, entertainment, sports, and leisure facilities are positive indicators of vitality, while urban villages and residential areas have the opposite effect. The model can explain 59% of vitality changes. This paper proposes a quantifiable and replicable adaptation framework for urban villages that combines urban form with data vitality assessment in order to deepen our understanding of urban villages and offer theoretical justifications for long-term urban regeneration. The findings also suggest that spatial differences should be taken into account when formulating urban regeneration responses to make them more targeted. Overall, this paper provides valuable insights for urban planners, policymaker and researchers interested in promoting sustainable urban development through vitality-based urban regeneration. Full article
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15 pages, 3587 KiB  
Article
Coupling Coordination Degree between Ecological Environment Quality and Urban Development in Chengdu–Chongqing Economic Circle Based on the Google Earth Engine Platform
by Jiajie Zhang and Tinggang Zhou
Sustainability 2023, 15(5), 4389; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15054389 - 1 Mar 2023
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1296
Abstract
Rapid urbanization often exerts massive pressure on the resources relied upon by the ecological environment. It is necessary to quickly evaluate the interaction and mutual influence between regional urbanization and the ecological environment. This paper uses the Google Earth Engine (GEE) platform, integrates [...] Read more.
Rapid urbanization often exerts massive pressure on the resources relied upon by the ecological environment. It is necessary to quickly evaluate the interaction and mutual influence between regional urbanization and the ecological environment. This paper uses the Google Earth Engine (GEE) platform, integrates MODIS and night light remote sensing data sets, and computes the remote sensing-based ecological index (RSEI) and the coupling coordination degree (CCD) to measure the coupling coordination and analyze the spatiotemporal changes in the Chengdu–Chongqing Economic Circle (CCEC) for 2010, 2015, and 2020. Our results demonstrate four key findings. Firstly, the CCD varies spatially; it peaks at the Chengdu and the West Chongqing Plains, decreasing outwards along the mountains, with the lowest degree of coupling in the central, southern, and northern edge areas of the CCEC. Additionally, it has shown a trend of maintaining unchanged first and then increasing, mainly responding to policy decisions. Secondly, the changes between the different coupling levels were almost stable and mainly occurred between adjacent levels. Thirdly, the coupling level of towns spreads outwards from the centers at Chengdu and Chongqing and has an overall upward trend in time. Fourthly, in the most recent year, the coupling types present a distribution pattern of one developing axis connected with two peaks. Specifically, the environment system lagging type aggregates in Chengdu, Chongqing, and their surrounding areas, and the others mainly are economic system lagging type. The high internal coupling type also mainly occurs in the high and low coupling levels. Under this context, constructive suggestions for developmental optimization in the study area were proposed. Full article
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2022

Jump to: 2023, 2021, 2020

11 pages, 2718 KiB  
Article
Spatial Distribution Characteristics and Influencing Factors of Traditional Villages in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region
by Meiyan Li, Wen Ouyang and Dayu Zhang
Sustainability 2023, 15(1), 632; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15010632 - 30 Dec 2022
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 2518
Abstract
This study comprises 669 national and local traditional villages in the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. Using the ArcGIS software platform, the nearest neighbor index, coefficient of variation, and kernel density tools are used to describe the distribution density characteristics of traditional villages; the [...] Read more.
This study comprises 669 national and local traditional villages in the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. Using the ArcGIS software platform, the nearest neighbor index, coefficient of variation, and kernel density tools are used to describe the distribution density characteristics of traditional villages; the imbalance index method and the Gini coefficient are used to describe the equilibrium index of the distribution of traditional villages in municipalities and geographical subdivisions. This study demonstrates that Guangxi’s traditional villages are spatially distributed with “one main and two vices”. Traditional villages are unevenly concentrated in Guilin City and the northern parts of Hezhou and Liuzhou. They are geographically concentrated in the Yuecheng Ling mountain range and Guibei’s surrounding flat areas, Guizhong’s Shengtang Mountain range, and the Guidong’s alluvial river plains. Traditional villages are more prevalent in mountainous areas, and their construction and development take the water resources of rivers and flood protection into account. The research results of this paper have an important guiding significance for considering the internal rules of the spatial distribution of traditional villages in Guangxi, so as to provide some data support for the protection planning of traditional villages in Guangxi. Full article
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27 pages, 13881 KiB  
Article
Potential and Opportunities of Use of Postindustrial Buildings and Territories for Urban Development: Case Studies of the Historical Area in Lviv (Ukraine)
by Chengjun Zhou, Halyna Petryshyn, Olha Kryvoruchko, Orest Kochan and Krzysztof Przystupa
Sustainability 2022, 14(23), 16020; https://doi.org/10.3390/su142316020 - 30 Nov 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2261
Abstract
Industrial objects constructed between the XIX century and the first half of the XX century were scattered outside the historical city center. However, they are currently located within the boundaries of the historical area of a big city. Postindustrial objects that have lost [...] Read more.
Industrial objects constructed between the XIX century and the first half of the XX century were scattered outside the historical city center. However, they are currently located within the boundaries of the historical area of a big city. Postindustrial objects that have lost their initial function create opportunities for city development. An urgent problem of urban planning in Lviv is to determine the prospects for the development and reconstruction of industrial areas, complexes, and buildings. The purpose of the work is to identify the modern urban trends in the development process of postindustrial areas located in the historic area of Lviv, as well as its compliance with the city development strategy. The article investigates the connection of new objects with the main functions of the district, provides a historical excursion of their development, on-site studies, and a comparative analysis of objects with the goals of the master plan of Lviv and of the integrated concept of development of the central part of the city. The studied objects of the urban revitalization of postindustrial buildings and areas are grouped according to new dominant function: 1—Development of the creative industry; 2—Revalued multifunctional areas; 3—Implementation of the concept of city center expansion; 4—Reconstruction of historical localities, and 5—Creation of new residential complexes. The authors consider the process of re-urbanization in some particular postindustrial areas and objects as a search for ideas to generalize their use for the whole city. The intensive industrial development of the city during the Soviet period led to strict regulation of other areas. After obtaining independence, there is an opportunity to fix the imbalance. This process occurs in different ways. In particular, the “in situ” review provides an opportunity to understand the development of the territory—whether it follows the master plan (or contradicts it), whether it meets the new development strategy of the city, whether it meets the needs of the local community, or meets the interests of developers only. Full article
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21 pages, 1454 KiB  
Article
Home Use and Experience during COVID-19 in London: Problems of Housing Quality and Design
by Sam Jacoby and Lucia Alonso
Sustainability 2022, 14(9), 5355; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14095355 - 29 Apr 2022
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2922
Abstract
COVID-19 lockdowns led to a reassessment of housing conditions and created greater awareness of their impact on wellbeing and inequalities. Changes in home use and lived experience during the pandemic were studied through a survey of London residents (n = 1250) in 2021, [...] Read more.
COVID-19 lockdowns led to a reassessment of housing conditions and created greater awareness of their impact on wellbeing and inequalities. Changes in home use and lived experience during the pandemic were studied through a survey of London residents (n = 1250) in 2021, focusing on issues of housing design, perceptions of housing quality, and future housing expectations. The survey found that a quarter of all dwellings and at least one room in a third of homes were deemed too small and failing to meet the needs of occupants. Renters with a shortage of space and poorly maintained or designed homes suffered most. A total of 37.9% of respondents reported that their wellbeing was affected by housing conditions. While for well-designed homes aspects of dwelling size were considered the highest priority, dwelling layout, usability, adaptability, and flexibility were equally key concerns. However, how problems of housing design, quality, and size are understood often depends on highly individual experiences and expectations. By highlighting the importance of lived experience, the pandemic shows the limitations of current, normative design standards. Future space standards need greater flexibility in the distribution of floor areas and should consider a wider range of home uses to ensure more equitable and long-term housing provision. Full article
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2021

Jump to: 2023, 2022, 2020

18 pages, 5892 KiB  
Article
The Possibilities of Orthophotos Application for Calculation of Ecological Stability Coefficient Purposes
by Jakub Chromčák, Daša Bačová, Pavol Pecho and Anna Seidlová
Sustainability 2021, 13(6), 3017; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13063017 - 10 Mar 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1842
Abstract
Hand in hand with the increasing interest in the environment, this work puts the spotlight on ecological stability itself. The Coefficient of Ecological Stability (CES) indicates a chosen region’s stability level that may be calculated using various methodical instructions. For exact [...] Read more.
Hand in hand with the increasing interest in the environment, this work puts the spotlight on ecological stability itself. The Coefficient of Ecological Stability (CES) indicates a chosen region’s stability level that may be calculated using various methodical instructions. For exact CES determination, it is necessary to divide the area of interest correctly into predefined classes and the division quality has a direct impact on the final CES value precision which presents its informative value. For CES calculations in the past, terrestrial measurements and processing were used. Regarding the new methods of spatial data acquisition such as photogrammetry or remote sensing, there comes the question of the usage of these data for secondary purposes, such as for ecology. This articles goal is to test the use of the images taken by an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) for CES calculation. The main objective is to highlight the possibility of a UAV to measure CES without terrestrial measurements. The second objective is to compare the actual formulas for CES calculation and to observe the differences between the results from different calculations. Another aim is to show the inconsistency of calculations which lead to legislative unification. The aim is to apply a new method of CES calculation using Geographic Information System (GIS) software and modern methods of data acquisition and to point out the benefits, mainly including the time factor, which is closely related to the terrestrial geodetic measurement, when the CES value is about to be calculated for such a spacious area. Full article
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2020

Jump to: 2023, 2022, 2021

12 pages, 17418 KiB  
Article
Analysis of the Characteristics of Ecological Security Zoning and Its Dynamic Change Pattern: A Case Study of the Weibei Area
by Yue Zhang, Liyuan Zhang, Kanhua Yu and Yifan Zou
Sustainability 2020, 12(17), 7222; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12177222 - 3 Sep 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2434
Abstract
The development pattern of agriculture and energy exploitation in the southern marginal area of the Loess Plateau is widespread in the northern part of China. As a typical example, the fragile ecological area in the Weibei region is greatly affected by human factors, [...] Read more.
The development pattern of agriculture and energy exploitation in the southern marginal area of the Loess Plateau is widespread in the northern part of China. As a typical example, the fragile ecological area in the Weibei region is greatly affected by human factors, which makes the local ecological environment and social sustainability disturbed to varying degrees. Taking the Weibei region as the study area, through the comprehensive analysis of social, economic, and climate data, an index system suitable for the ecological security assessment of the Weibei region was constructed. The ecological security of this region was quantitatively evaluated by spatial principal component analysis (SPCA), and its ecological security partition was divided and analyzed. There were five zones at different levels, and I to V represented the development of ecological security from a low level to a high level. The results showed that from 1997 to 2017, the ecological security of different districts and counties in the Weibei region showed different trends. For example, the ecological security index of Tongguan County, Chengcheng County, and Pucheng County continued to decrease, but the overall index value was still high, and the ecological security index of Dali County, Fuping County, and Hancheng County increased. During this period, the ecological security of regions I and II continued to increase, while regions IV and V first decreased and then increased. At the same time, the area of the ecological security buffer region increased year by year. This study can provide a feasible method for assessing ecological security of the current regional model of mixed agriculture and energy extraction industry. Full article
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15 pages, 1940 KiB  
Article
Perceived Quality of Urban Wetland Parks: A Second-Order Factor Structure Equation Modeling
by Jiang Li, Qiao Pan, You Peng, Tao Feng, Shaobo Liu, Xiaoxi Cai, Chixing Zhong, Yicheng Yin and Wenbo Lai
Sustainability 2020, 12(17), 7204; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12177204 - 3 Sep 2020
Cited by 16 | Viewed by 3989
Abstract
Wetland in the urban or peri-urban areas has been recognized as an important component of urban ecosystems and provides ecological and environmental services. Wetland park emerged as a kind of restoration of natural wetlands in the context of increasing pressure on land and [...] Read more.
Wetland in the urban or peri-urban areas has been recognized as an important component of urban ecosystems and provides ecological and environmental services. Wetland park emerged as a kind of restoration of natural wetlands in the context of increasing pressure on land and eco-environment caused by urban sprawl, which has played an essential role in providing recreational spaces/opportunities and improving social interactions. However, little research has been conducted on the theoretical formulation elaborating individuals’ perceived quality of wetland parks when people are engaging in activities therein. This study is an attempt to develop a method to measure the quality of wetland parks based on individuals’ various perceptions and attitudes. From the view of human-nature interaction, the perceived quality is hypothetically conceptualized as a composite of two dimensions, such as comfort perception and environmental satisfaction. A series of questionnaire-based surveys were conducted among respondents (N = 936) in Yanghu wetland park in Changsha, China. Based on the measured items from on-site surveys, second-order factor structural equation modeling is applied to estimate the hypothesis of a hierarchical structure for elaborating how the quality of wetland park is perceived by individual respondents. The results test the hypothesis that the quality of wetland park as a second-order theoretical construct can be conceptualized by two first-order theoretical constructs, individuals’ comfort (loading = 0.749), and environmental satisfaction (loading = 0.828). In addition, a significant influence of attitudes toward green space on the perceived quality of wetland park has been identified. Full article
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29 pages, 8813 KiB  
Article
Effects of Urbanization on Regional Extreme-Temperature Changes in China, 1960–2016
by Junliang Qiu, Xiankun Yang, Bowen Cao, Zhilong Chen and Yuxuan Li
Sustainability 2020, 12(16), 6560; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12166560 - 13 Aug 2020
Cited by 19 | Viewed by 3184
Abstract
Urbanization in China has been expanding dramatically since 1978, significantly affecting the extreme temperature changes in cities, which is a vital indicator of urban climate change. To assess urban-related effect on regional extreme-temperature changes in China, this study employed high-resolution land use data [...] Read more.
Urbanization in China has been expanding dramatically since 1978, significantly affecting the extreme temperature changes in cities, which is a vital indicator of urban climate change. To assess urban-related effect on regional extreme-temperature changes in China, this study employed high-resolution land use data to divide meteorological stations into rural stations, suburban stations, and urban stations, and evaluated the annual and seasonal changes in extreme minimum temperature (TNN), mean temperature (Tavg) and extreme maximum temperature (TXX) at each meteorological station. The result revealed that extreme temperature indices (TNN, TXX) and Tavg increased significantly from 1960 to 2016 with varied degrees in different seasons and different regions. Extreme temperature indices in high latitudes increased more rapidly than in low latitudes; while the trends in summer are slower than in other seasons. Urbanization effects on the trends of TNN, Tavg and TXX were all statistically significant, but urbanization effects on TNN and Tavg were more significant than TXX. The urbanization effects were more significant in low altitudes, especially in North, South, Northwest and Northeast China. In North, Northwest and Northeast China, the urban-related effects on temperature increase were mainly observed in spring and winter, but in South China, the urban-related effects were more evident in summer. This study is valuable for sustainable urban planning in China. Full article
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25 pages, 4055 KiB  
Article
Spatiotemporal Patterns of Population Mobility and Its Determinants in Chinese Cities Based on Travel Big Data
by Zhen Yang, Weijun Gao, Xueyuan Zhao, Chibiao Hao and Xudong Xie
Sustainability 2020, 12(10), 4012; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12104012 - 14 May 2020
Cited by 19 | Viewed by 3853
Abstract
Large-scale population mobility has an important impact on the spatial layout of China’s urban systems. Compared with traditional census data, mobile-phone-based travel big data can describe the mobility patterns of a population in a timely, dynamic, complete, and accurate manner. With the travel [...] Read more.
Large-scale population mobility has an important impact on the spatial layout of China’s urban systems. Compared with traditional census data, mobile-phone-based travel big data can describe the mobility patterns of a population in a timely, dynamic, complete, and accurate manner. With the travel big dataset supported by Tencent’s location big data, combined with social network analysis (SNA) and a semiparametric geographically weighted regression (SGWR) model, this paper first analyzed the spatiotemporal patterns and characteristics of mobile-data-based population mobility (MBPM), and then revealed the socioeconomic factors related to population mobility during the Spring Festival of 2019, which is the most important festival in China, equivalent to Thanksgiving Day in United States. During this period, the volume of population mobility exceeded 200 million, which became the largest time node of short-term population mobility in the world. The results showed that population mobility presents a spatial structure dominated by two east–west main axes formed by Chengdu, Nanjing, Wuhan, Shanghai; and three north–south main axes formed by Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Shanghai, Wuhan, and Chengdu. The major cities in the four urban agglomerations in China occupy an absolute core position in the population mobility network hierarchy, and the population mobility network presents typical “small world” features and forms 11 closely related groups. Semiparametric geographically weighted regression model results showed that mobile-data-based population mobility variation is significantly related to the value-added of secondary and tertiary industries, foreign capital, average wage, urbanization rate, and value-added of primary industries. When the spatial heterogeneity and nonstationarity was considered, the socioeconomic factors that affect population mobility showed differences between different regions and cities. The patterns of population mobility and determinants explored in this paper can provide a new reference for the balanced development of regional economy. Full article
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23 pages, 7392 KiB  
Article
Optimization of Design Parameters for Office Buildings with Climatic Adaptability Based on Energy Demand and Thermal Comfort
by Yuang Guo and Dewancker Bart
Sustainability 2020, 12(9), 3540; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12093540 - 26 Apr 2020
Cited by 19 | Viewed by 3527
Abstract
According to a Chinese building energy demand report of 2016, building consumption is accelerating at a spectacular rate, especially for urban public buildings. In this study, various design parameters that meet the principle of climate adaptation are proposed to achieve the unity of [...] Read more.
According to a Chinese building energy demand report of 2016, building consumption is accelerating at a spectacular rate, especially for urban public buildings. In this study, various design parameters that meet the principle of climate adaptation are proposed to achieve the unity of energy utilization and indoor thermal comfort level. According to the local energy conservation codes, five typical benchmark geometric models were established in Open Studio (Sketch-Up plug-in) for sites representative of various climates, meanwhile, adopting the engine of Energy Plus (EP-Launch) to calculate the instrument definition file (IDF), respectively, for assessing the coupling relationship between energy consumption as well as thermal comfort. Results implied that based on the time proportion (8760 h) that met the level 1 comfort range, total energy reductions of different Chinese climate regions were different. Among them, the severe cold zone (SCZ—Changchun) and hot summer and cold winter zone (HSCW—Shanghai) appeared to have the greatest energy saving potential with 18–24% and 16–19%, respectively, while the cold zone (CZ—Beijing) and mild zone (MZ—Kunming) approximately equaled 15% and 12–15%, and the saving space of the hot summer and warm winter zone (HSWW—Haikou) appeared relatively low, only around 5–7%. Although the simulation results may be limited by the number of parameter settings, the main ones are under consideration seriously, which is further indication that there is still much room for appropriate improvements in the local public building energy efficiency codes. Full article
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23 pages, 4274 KiB  
Article
Research on Regional System Planning Method of Rural Habitat in Gully Regions of the Loess Plateau, under the Background of Rural Vitalization Strategy in China
by Tao Zhang, Beiyang Ding, Qinian Hu, Yuyu Liu, Dian Zhou, Weijun Gao and Hiroatsu Fukuda
Sustainability 2020, 12(8), 3317; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12083317 - 19 Apr 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2692
Abstract
Against the background of the Rural Vitalization Strategy in the gully regions of the Loess Plateau, large number of residents living in gullies move to tableland. On the one hand, this causes the disappearance of slope villages and gully villages; on the other [...] Read more.
Against the background of the Rural Vitalization Strategy in the gully regions of the Loess Plateau, large number of residents living in gullies move to tableland. On the one hand, this causes the disappearance of slope villages and gully villages; on the other hand, it increases ecological pressure on tableland, which was originally densely populated. The villages’ locations, the developing conditions, and the ecological carrying capacity of the surrounding villages have influence on the development direction of these villages and regional system planning. Through comparative analysis of different analysis methods for determining ecological carrying capacity, this paper takes the limiting factor analysis method as the main method and improves it according to the local conditions. Through the analysis of maximum ecological carrying capacity, current carrying capacity, and current population, we can determine which villages have the potential to support more immigrants and which ones should be integrated with others to improve the human settlement environment. At the same time, villages are graded so that the present and future human settlements’ environment can be further analyzed and predicted, which can be also adopted as an important guide for the local villages’ relocation and combination. Finally, we select a representative region to prove the general applicability of our planning method in the Loess Plateau. Full article
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16 pages, 3676 KiB  
Article
Analysis on Spatial Pattern and Driving Factors of Carbon Emission in Urban–Rural Fringe Mixed-Use Communities: Cases Study in East Asia
by Xiaoqing Zhu, Tiancheng Zhang, Weijun Gao and Danying Mei
Sustainability 2020, 12(8), 3101; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12083101 - 13 Apr 2020
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 3607
Abstract
Urban-intensive areas are responsible for an estimated 80% of greenhouse gas emissions, particularly carbon dioxide. The urban–rural fringe areas emit more greenhouse gases than urban centers. The purpose of this study is to analyze the spatial pattern and driving factors of carbon emissions [...] Read more.
Urban-intensive areas are responsible for an estimated 80% of greenhouse gas emissions, particularly carbon dioxide. The urban–rural fringe areas emit more greenhouse gases than urban centers. The purpose of this study is to analyze the spatial pattern and driving factors of carbon emissions in urban–rural fringe mixed-use communities, and to develop planning methods to reduce carbon emissions in communities. This study identifies mixed-use communities in East Asian urban–rural fringe areas as industrial, commercial, tourism, and rental-apartment communities, subsequently using the emission factor method to calculate carbon emissions. The statistical information grid analysis and geographic information systems spatial analysis method are employed to analyze the spatial pattern of carbon emission and explore the relationship between established space, industrial economy, material consumption, social behavior, and carbon emission distribution characteristics by partial least squares regression, ultimately summing up the spatial pattern of carbon emission in the urban–rural fringe areas of East Asia. Results show that (1) mixed-use communities in the East Asian urban–rural fringe areas face tremendous pressure to reduce emissions. Mixed-use community carbon emissions in the late urbanization period are lower than those the early urbanization. (2) Mixed-use community carbon emission is featured by characteristics, such as planning structure decisiveness, road directionality, infrastructure directionality, and industrial linkage. (3) Industrial communities produce the highest carbon emissions, followed by rental-apartment communities, business communities, and tourism communities. (4) The driving factor that most affects the spatial distribution of carbon emissions is the material energy consumption. The fuel consumption per unit of land is the largest driver of carbon emissions. Using the obtained spatial pattern and its driving factors of carbon emissions, this study provides suggestions for planning and construction, industrial development, material consumption, and convenient life guidance. Full article
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14 pages, 7017 KiB  
Article
Effect of Street Canyon Shape and Tree Layout on Pollutant Diffusion under Real Tree Model
by Le Wang, Junwei Su, Zhaolin Gu and Qingxiang Shui
Sustainability 2020, 12(5), 2105; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12052105 - 9 Mar 2020
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 3016
Abstract
Trees have a significant impact on the airflow and pollutant diffusion in the street canyon and are directly related to the comfort and health of residents. In this paper, OpenFOAM is used for simulating the airflow and pollutant diffusion in the street canyon [...] Read more.
Trees have a significant impact on the airflow and pollutant diffusion in the street canyon and are directly related to the comfort and health of residents. In this paper, OpenFOAM is used for simulating the airflow and pollutant diffusion in the street canyon at different height–width ratios and tree layouts. Different from the drag source model in the previous numerical simulation, this study focuses on the characterization of the blocking effect of tree branches on airflow by using more precise and real tree models. It is found that the airflow is blocked by the tree branches in the canopy, resulting in slower airflow and varying velocity direction; the air flows in the pore area between trees more easily, and the vortex centers are different in cases where the street canyon shape and tree layout are different. Low-velocity airflow distributes around and between two tree canopies, especially under the influence of two trees with different spacing. At the height of the pedestrian, the tree branches change the vortex structure of airflow, and thereby high pollutant concentration distribution on both sides of the bottom of the leeward side of the street canyon changes constantly. In the street canyon, the small change in tree spacing has a very limited influence on the pollutant concentration. The street canyon has the lowest average pollutant concentration at the largest y-axis direction spacing between two trees. Full article
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15 pages, 8633 KiB  
Article
Effect of Floor Shape Optimization on Energy Consumption for U-Shaped Office Buildings in the Hot-Summer and Cold-Winter Area of China
by Xiaoyu Ying and Wenzhe Li
Sustainability 2020, 12(5), 2079; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12052079 - 8 Mar 2020
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 8232
Abstract
This paper explored the effects of the side proportion of building floor shape on building energy consumption. It is based on the analysis of regression models that were developed in the present study. The simplified building models can be used to conduct a [...] Read more.
This paper explored the effects of the side proportion of building floor shape on building energy consumption. It is based on the analysis of regression models that were developed in the present study. The simplified building models can be used to conduct a parametric study to investigate the effect of building plane shape parameters on total heating and cooling load. DesignBuilder was used to build and simulate individual building configuration. Energy consumption simulations for forty-eight U-shaped buildings with different plane layouts were performed to create a comprehensive dataset covering general ranges of side proportions of U-shaped buildings and building orientations. Statistical analysis was performed using MATLAB to develop a set of regression equations predicting energy consumption and optimizing floor shapes. Furthermore, perimeter-area ratio (PAR), width ratio, and depth ratio were considered as three factors to characterize the quantitative relationship between floor shape and energy consumption. It is envisioned that the binary quadratic polynomial regression models, visualized as a smooth surface in space and mapped to a vortex image on the plane, can be used to estimate the energy consumption in the early stages of the design when different building schemes and design concepts are being considered. Full article
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18 pages, 8884 KiB  
Article
Impacts of Urban Form on Thermal Environment Near the Surface Region at Pedestrian Height: A Case Study Based on High-Density Built-Up Areas of Nanjing City in China
by Junyan Yang, Beixiang Shi, Geyang Xia, Qin Xue and Shi-Jie Cao
Sustainability 2020, 12(5), 1737; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12051737 - 26 Feb 2020
Cited by 31 | Viewed by 4170
Abstract
The continuous worsening of urban thermal environments poses a severe threat to human health and is among the main problems associated with urban climate change and sustainable development. This issue is particularly severe in high-density built-up areas. Existing studies on the thermal environments [...] Read more.
The continuous worsening of urban thermal environments poses a severe threat to human health and is among the main problems associated with urban climate change and sustainable development. This issue is particularly severe in high-density built-up areas. Existing studies on the thermal environments (temperature data extracted from satellite remote sensing images) are mainly focused on urban canopy areas (airspace below the average height of trees or buildings) rather than the near surface region (at pedestrian height). However, the main outdoor activity space of urban residents is the area near surface region. Hence, this study aims to investigate the influence of urban form (i.e., building density, height, and openness) on thermal environment near the surface region. The high-density built-up areas of a typical megacity (i.e., Nanjing) in China were selected, and the thermal environments of 26 typical blocks were simulated using ENVI-met software. Temperature field measurements were carried out for simulation validation. On this basis, a classified and comparative study was conducted by selecting the key spatial form elements that affect thermal environments. The results showed that in actual high-density built-up areas, single urban form parameter does not determine the thermal environments near the urban surface but mainly affected by the use (function) of space. For this study, the overall thermal environment of a street block is optimal when the building density is between 40% and 50% and the average building height is between 8 and 17 stories. Nonetheless, the urban form can be improved to optimize the overall effects on building functions and thermal environments. Furthermore, function-specific urban form optimization strategies were proposed to optimize thermal environments according to specific functional needs. Full article
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