CO-MAPPING: The Sustainable Compact and Green City
Conference contribution, 2014
The 2011 Report from the Swedish Research Council FORMAS on Urban Sustainable Development, points toward a current knowledge gap in understanding the connections between citizen and the built environment. According to the report, there is an unquestioned link between built environment and living conditions by which man, by acting in and appropriating the built environment, is also its cocreator. One of the major concerns in current urban planning and structuring of urban planning policies, deals with lack of understanding the perception of the built environment, including the citizens perspective, and the communication gap with experts resulting from this. To create a built environment that satisfies the citizen’s role, we have to first understand who the citizen is based on their location, and how they perceive and want to inhabit their urban space.
The authors’ focus of research lies in investigating the citizen’s/user’s perception of the the built environment within a variety of urban typologies in order to identify its creative potentials, such as urban green potentials and sustainable compact mixed city.
The paper examines this new design process of ‘co-mapping’, which the authors have identified as a co-creative methodology to sustainable urban development. The methodology focuses on the feasibility of using a collaborative mapping application on a hand-held communications device as a comprehensive survey tool for categorically ‘mapping’ user-perceptions on urban conditions. The evaluation and testing of the methods takes place through a series of workshops around themes of ‘Urban Green Potential’ and ‘Compact Mixed City’.
The Co-Mapping© application, designed by the authors with trans-disciplinary efforts with GIS specialists and software designers, utilizes the accessibility of smartphones and diverse geo-technology to create a versatile survey mapping system. The web-based real-time visualization strategies of the output data are employed for efficient dissemination of information as a two-way communications tool.