Integrated Urban Solutions
Around the world more and more people are living in cities. Many developments – which are often mutually exacerbating – are throwing up numerous challenges. This situation requires close cooperation between a range of disciplines. Drees & Sommer offers comprehensive urban development know-how: BLUE CITY – Integrated Urban Solutions.
Future-safe solutions have to address many stress factors – and develop holistic concepts to do this. Factors to be taken into consideration include economic, ecological, functional, social and esthetic aspects of urban areas:
Today, energy issues include the entire supply chain from production and transportation through to the storage of, in most cases electrical, energy. But they also include ways of saving energy through efficient technologies. Factors such as cost-effectiveness, safety and – in the case of production – site selection.
Drastic measures are necessary in cities to get global warming under control. The aim of sustainable buildings is to minimize their carbon footprint, and indeed – in the medium and long term – to maximize their ‘beneficial footprint’. Such buildings will bind more carbon over their lifecycle than was released during their construction. A supplementary strategy aims to achieve climate-adapted construction.
The question of proper management of resources is becoming increasingly important. For cities, the issues range from land use to the use of ecological and healthy materials for fitout. This means it is not only a matter of using increasingly efficient technologies, but also of organizing cyclical material flows – such as Cradle to Cradle – or, more generally, of establishing the right balance.
Mobility is an important pillar of modern societies and one of growing importance in an age of increasing flows of goods and traffic. A key question is how the various means of transport can be practically linked. In addition, both electromobility and the associated infrastructure are still in their infancy.
By ensuring the supply and disposal of essential goods and services, infrastructure is the backbone of cities and urban centers. Examples include water and wastewater and a nearby food supply, such as is provided by urban gardening. It is also about functioning transport routes, including bikeways, as well as road and park design, and urban rail transport.
For cities, digitization raises questions of data connectivity and data integration as well as the networking of wide-area infrastructure and everyday objects. The ‘Internet of Things’ encompasses not only entire buildings and districts, but also individual rooms, components and objects. Many new business models are springing up as a result of the shift of the entire value added into virtual reality.
Local government and public finances (but also private investors’ funds) are coming under increasing pressure. For this reason it is essential that the profitability and viability of urban developments be clarified reliably at the earliest possible stage. Information regarding potential subsidies must also be obtained in a timely manner.
No other environment exposes people more to general social trends than a city. From demographic change and migration to living, working and shopping: All these things change and, as a result, people and their urban environment change, too. Will we visit shopping malls in the future? Or will we have goods delivered by drones? Will we still go to work in offices? Or just work from home?