360cityscan: integrated solutions to face urban challenges
Author(s): Mattias Vansteenwegen; Etienne Drouet
Tractebel has developed the 360 city scan, a holistic methodology to assess cities and guide them according to their needs and priorities. Scans have already been deployed in more than 40 cities worldwide. Based on this scan, we offer integrated approaches to our clients, tailor-made solutions leveraging on our urban engineering expertise. The perspectives of the 360cityscan meet the global challenges cities face today: climate change, resource scarcity, technologisation, demographic changes, social transformation and glocalisation. Within cities, the intensity of these challenges is much higher than in rural conditions.
All perspectives are somehow related to these challenges; the perspectives give therefore an accurate status of the city against these threats. The perspectives work together as a whole towards a balanced city. The perspectives must be seen as different layers of a city, a balanced city encloses all the different perspectives in a good ratio. When one perspective is underdeveloped, the city does not work properly or excludes citizens. Preferably, each intervention in the city has a positive impact on all the perspectives. We created a tool to measure the level of maturity for the different themes. The inner 2 circles represent the status of the physical system of the theme, the outer 2 circles the ‘efficiency’ or ‘quality’. To illustrate this for ‘water’: the inner circles indicate the status of the basic infrastructure of water (amount of people with wastewater collection), in the outer circles we measure the level of wastewater treatment by the city. The city is shown in a user-friendly 360 diagram with an individual score for each theme, arranged by perspective.
The diagram summarizes in a visual way the maturity of a city and highlights the strength’s and challenges. If well designed and managed, cities offer important opportunities for economic development and for expanding access to basic services, including health care and education, for large numbers of people. Coming from an engineering background of top-level expertise in Energy, Transport, Water, Urban design, the integration of different teams and know-how is essential to deal with the complexity of issues and challenges that cities are facing worldwide and for successful sustainable urban development. Searching for synergy between different disciplines is in this sense key to unlocking hidden potentials. When they meet and connect, creative solutions to complex problems are found. Urban processes are also becoming increasingly complex given the fast-changing evolutions in terms of stakeholders, policy governance and political processes. In this perspective, a more process-oriented and collaborative way of working is needed, with different in between goals of diverse scale and nature instead of blueprint master planning approach.
Case study: 55th ISOCARP Congress Presentations