A+U “Urban Science and New Design Tools”

How technology transforms urban planning and governance?

This September issue of A+U is devoted to new technologies in urban science and their applications in settings that range from the aesthetics of urban spaces to participatory democracy and public health. Edited by Yuji Yoshimura, It includes some of the projects developed by 300.000 Km/s such as Mercè, Geographies of the Lockdown, Nocturnal Landscapes, Ciutat Vella Land-Use Plan and Air/Aria/Aire -that explore how these technologies will change the ways in which architects shape urban spaces.

These and other projects from Barcelona, which has been at the forefront of using these new tools at the municipal level, are presented alongside recent efforts in the United States and Japan, covering not only “the physical aspects of cities”, but also “the systems and public-private platforms that have made them possible, and how cities can consider the issue of privacy.” We discover how information can be gathered, visualized, and used as a communication and design tool to plan a livable city, often with the government and citizens in partnership.



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Nocturnal Landscapes

Exploring global metropolis at night

The research carried out in the project Nocturnal Landscapes: Urban Flows of Global Metropolises, curated by Iker Gil and organized by MAS Context, has materialized in a publication that collects the contents of the project’s exhibition in Chicago as well as new ones.

Nocturnal Landscapes: Urban Flows of Global Metropolises is a project that observes and analyzes cities at night from an interdisciplinary perspective. We have used data about urban life to compare the rhythms and regions of global cities through cartographic representations. The maps and graphics generated are complemented by the photographs of David Schalliol, photographer and sociologist, questioning the correlation of human activity and light, and revealing hidden aspects of our cities.


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Quaderns Biennale, 2021: Air/Aria/Aire

Making air pollution visible

A special edition of the COAC magazine Quaderns d’Arquitectura i Urbanisme, dedicated to the project “Catalonia in Venice – Air / Aria / Aire” has recently been published.

The monograph, directed by the architect Olga Subirós, collects the research carried out for the project as well as articles written especially for the magazine.

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Metròpolis Barcelona

This catalog consists of three volumes that collect and expand on the contents of the Metròpolis Barcelona exhibition that analyzes the situation of metropolitan Barcelona, ​​with the aim of mainly understanding how it has been formed and transformed in the last forty years. The first volume "Metropolitan urbanism today" collects the contents of the exhibition and provides the contribution of some twenty international experts. The second volume "Metropolitan Transformations" includes the itinerary of the recent transformation of metropolitan Barcelona and points to the opportunities that may open up with the new PDU. The catalog also includes a 150-page Atlas that brings together a total of 70 cartographies and graphics.

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linkhttp://www3.amb.cat/repositori/PDU/Cat%C3%A0leg%20Metr%C3%B2polis%201.pdf linkhttp://www3.amb.cat/repositori/PDU/Cat%C3%A0leg%20Metr%C3%B2polis%202.pdf


Areas Metropolitana de Barcelona


A citizen science experiment: citizens training algorithms to do more livable urban environments

The report compiles the results of the Mercè project, a citizen science experiment carried out from May to November 2020 in which citizens have trained an artificial intelligence algorithm to be able to predict the habitability of the city of Barcelona. The report collects the main results of the experiment and determines which are the most and least livable streets in the city based on variables that have been individualized thanks to the vote of the citizens.

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Planificación urbana integral, aprendiendo de Europa

Integrated urban planning, learning from Europe

Our contribution to the book ‘Integrated urban planning: learning from Europe’ promoted by Diputació de Barcelona and edited by Paisaje Transversal is a compendium of best practices under the title ‘We cannot work with what we cannot measure”.

The article aims at helping institutions to implement integrated urban planning in line with Europe and the major global agendas using a series of own experiences (Energy map of Rubí, Open Papers and Arturo) to present the toolkit available to public administrations today interested in incorporating the new ecosystem of public data and big data into their urban policy and planning.

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Hacia una ciudadanía productora de datos

Toward Citizen Producers of Data

This article focuses on the existence of a possible data divide in the context of growing digitalization. The Open Papers project helps shine a light on social inequality derived from an inaccurate datafication of the environment. What urban problems are left out of decision-making processes due to a lack of information? How can citizens generate data without using complex technologies through processes of collective capture?

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Las ciudades serán de quién las cartografíe

Cities will belong to those who map them

The Aragonese government launched an open and collaborative platform for sharing knowledge and practices focused on the areas of open government and social innovation. Given this situation, we reflect on the need to involve the administration and citizens in the generation of data infrastructures in a context of the increasing privatization (at the hands of large corporations) of cartographic and geospatial information.

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Muovendoci verso un altro modello urbano

Moving towards another urban model

In the immediate context of the end of the lockdown in response to the first wave of Covid-19, this article reflects on the need for changes to the urban and territorial model (based on the concepts of distance and density that have emerged in their different dimensions as a result of the pandemic) and how the city should transition from impacting citizens’ health to serving as an infrastructure of collective health.

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Geographies of the lockdown

Mapping the city from home

A series of 13 maps illustrates the inequality of living conditions in Barcelona during the strict lockdown of the Covid-19 pandemic. This initial description of the housing stock – based on public but also partially private data – is a first step in reflecting on the role of housing to guarantee spatial justice and social integration through urbanism.

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