Sustainability, microclimate and culture in post-earthquake Christchurch

Tavares, S., Swaffield, S., and Stewart, E. (2013) Sustainability, microclimate and culture in post-earthquake Christchurch. In: Proceedings of the 50th World Congress of the International Federation of Landscape Architects (1) 42. pp. 347-354. From: IFLA50: 50th World Congress of the International Federation of Landscape Architects, 10-12 April 2013, Auckland, New Zealand.

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A series of earthquakes has forced Christchurch to re-plan and rebuild. Discussions about rebuilding strategies have emphasized the intention of making it a city for the future, sustainable and vibrant. This paper discusses the relationship between microclimate and urban culture in Christchurch based upon the concept of urban comfort. It explores the relationships between environment, people and culture to help understand the local requirements for urban landscape design. In this paper we claim that cultural requirements also should be taken into account when looking for sustainable strategies. A distinctive feature of this research is its focus on the way people are adapting to both surviving pre-quake and new post-quake environments.

Preliminary findings from the first year of field work using participant observation and 61 in-depth interviews with Christchurch residents are presented. The interviews were carried out in a variety of urban settings including: established sites (places sustaining relatively little damage) and emerging sites (those requiring rebuilding) during 2011-2012. Evidence from the interviews highlight future challenges regarding sustainability and urban comfort issues.

Post-quake Christchurch presents a remarkable opportunity to design an urban landscape which provides environmental, economic, social and cultural sustainability. However, to achieve successful outcomes it is fundamental to respond to the local culture. Field data suggest that the strong connections between urban and rural settings present in local culture, lifestyle and landscape generate a particular aesthetic and recreation preference for urban spaces, which should be considered in the urban landscape design strategies.

Item ID: 47599
Item Type: Conference Item (Research - E1)
ISBN: 978-0-473-24360-9
Keywords: urban comfort, microclimate, culture, landscape design
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Funders: Lincoln University
Date Deposited: 16 Mar 2017 00:54
FoR Codes: 12 BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND DESIGN > 1201 Architecture > 120107 Landscape Architecture @ 15%
12 BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND DESIGN > 1205 Urban and Regional Planning > 120508 Urban Design @ 60%
12 BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND DESIGN > 1205 Urban and Regional Planning > 120501 Community Planning @ 25%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970112 Expanding Knowledge in Built Environment and Design @ 60%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9603 Climate and Climate Change > 960399 Climate and Climate Change not elsewhere classified @ 25%
87 CONSTRUCTION > 8701 Construction Planning > 870105 Urban Planning @ 15%
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