Synergies and vision for a global sustainability of lands

Fabrizio Ascione, Filippo de Rossi



The challenges that cities are facing have changed, as have the strategies designed to tackle old and new problems. Urban renewal, revitalization, renouvellement, rehabilitation, riqualificazione, recupero have been for years the key words of the European Commission’s policies, programmes (Urban, Urbact…) and tools conceived to develop the idea of a good city for all.
But globalisation, climate change, pressure on resources, environment deterioration (Toledo Declaration, 2010) have transformed the urban development conditions and introduced the notion and evidence on “environmental limits”.
The concept of growth in economic and urbanism as well is worn out; the “business as usual model” focused on development at all costs shall be abandoned if we want to maintain cities and territories in a liveable condition, as Tim Jackson states, while a “green approach” is urgently needed.
In response to this wake-up call, the European Commission has promoted a new urban agenda focused on an integrated, smart, sustainable, inclusive development, based on a multilevel and multidisciplinary approach. That is the mean of the regeneration strategy being shared at EU meetings, with the hope that urban policies would shift towards sustainability and regeneration.
By calling for “an integrated urban regeneration and its strategic potential for a smarter, more sustainable and socially inclusive urban development in Europe” (2010), the Toledo Declaration Reference Document clearly expresses this concept.
But policies, programmes, declarations have apparently not hit the target if in 2015 an URBACT II paper defined “sustainable urban development” an elusive concept and proposed to clarify what we understand by sustainable regeneration.
Urban regeneration “is a way to reorganise and upgrade existing places than planning new urbanisation (Puppim de Olivera and Balaban, 2013) [;] typically urban regeneration actions involve economic, social and physical/environmental improvement measures [and] urban regeneration contributes towards the implementation of sustainable development through the recycling of land and buildings, reducing demolition waste and new construction materials, as well as reducing demand for peripheral urban growth and facilitating intensification and compactness of existing areas (Turcu 2012)”.
With this definition, the European Commission provides a general understanding to consider urban regeneration an integrated and sustainable oriented approach and promotes strategies to support a new growth model and create the conditions for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth (Horizon 2020). ....


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CSE Journal - City Safety Energy is a semiannual journal (Two ISSUES per Year) published by Le Penseur in Brienza (PZ) - Italy | ISSN print edition 2283-8767 | ISSN online edition 2284-3418 - Journal registerd at the Court of Potenza (Italy) n. 219/2014