Advanced use of the urban metabolism model in rapidly changing cities

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2014, 190 VOLUME 2 pp. 735 - 748
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For the calculation of energy and other flows in urban environments, we should take as a starting point relatively stable urban settlements. This makes it possible to calculate in and outgoing flows accurately, but only at a single moment in time. In this paper an adjusted approach to urban metabolism is proposed in which dynamic circumstances can be incorporated, suitable for urban settlements under pressure of rapid and unprecedented change. As examples we take the nearly uncontrollable growth of Almafraq in Jordan as a result of Syrian refugees and the changes in the population of Vlagtwedde in the Netherlands under influence from natural shrinkage and influx of (temporary) asylum seekers. The core questions answered here are: the way to calculate energy flows as input for sustainable urban design when population change is serious and the way to design cities when incorporating the results of dynamic urban metabolism. The research is ongoing and promises innovative results in the near future. © 2014 WIT Press.
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