EXPLORING THE WALKABILITY CONCEPT IN A POST-SOCIALIST CITY THROUGH GIS ANALYSIS. THE CASE STUDY OF IAȘI, ROMANIA

Lucian Roșu

Abstract


The walkability concept is widely researched and applied in western societies, being a major benchmark for creating a friendly urban environment by the local authorities. While in these countries the concept has a strong tradition, in Eastern Europe it has not received enough attention yet (neither from researchers nor local stakeholders). The present study aims to explore the possibilities of adapting this concept to the post-socialist city by analyzing the walkability potential in a medium-size city (Iași, Romania). The three main objectives envisaged by this research - delineating Walkability Areas, exploring their internal structure and highlighting patterns in regard to the urban structure of a post-socialist city – are accomplished by using the specific GIS tools and statistical methods. The results reveal a heterogeneous construction of the six walkability areas resulted, shaped by the socialist legacy and market economy transition. A walkability score, computed in order to quantitatively assess these differences among them, represents an effective tool for decision makers as it spots the major dysfunctionalities each of the walkability areas. The emergence of the concept in the post-socialist city favors the construction of a more livable urban environment.


Keywords


walkability areas, socialist heritage, service area, quantitative assessment, spatial patterns

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References


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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15551/scigeo.v60i2.360

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