EcoBalance model for assessing sustainability of urban development

Irmeli Wahlgren

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Sustainability of urban development can be assessed on different levels: neighborhoods, municipalities, regions etc. The EcoBalance model was developed in the early 1990s to assess the sustainability of residential areas and it has been developed further and applied at various planning levels in Finland: detailed plans, local master plans and regional plans. Assessment covers all structures: buildings and infrastructure, and transportation caused by inhabitants and work places of the area. The EcoBalance model estimates the total consumption of energy and other natural resources, the production of greenhouse gas and other emissions and wastes and the costs caused directly and indirectly by urban form on a life cycle basis. The results of the case studies provide information about the ecological impacts of various solutions in urban development. According to the research results urban planning solutions and decisions have large-scale significance for sustainable development of the built environment. The EcoBalance model can be utilized when planning new areas or developing new urban structures, constructing buildings and infrastructure as well as developing sustainable life styles. Future development needs concern forming the model for common use, developing data acquisition with new planning systems and updating the data used in the model.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)306-315
JournalInternational Journal of Sustainable Building Technology and Urban Development
Volume3
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2012
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • sustainability assessment
  • EcoBalance model
  • urban development
  • urban planning
  • eco efficiency

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