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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Sustainable urban design within contemporary urban policy: A comparative study between Chicago and Taipei
by Cheng, Chien-Ke, Ph.D., Illinois Institute of Technology, 2013, 101; 3574932
Abstract (Summary)

This research and methodology develop a set of statistical measurements to evaluate sustainability — in terms of desired high urban density, walkability for community amenity and convenience for everyday life — at the level of urban design for the cities of Chicago, USA and Taipei, Taiwan. The method, based upon GIS (Geographical Information System) technology, is used at this spatial level and for this type of academic study for the first time. The research analyzes and compares the percentage of each city's population living within the "Quarter Mile Radius Sphere of Influence" (QMSI) for three classes of community amenities: parks, public elementary schools, and subway stations. The new and unique statistical data obtained in this thesis show a great disparity between the two cities.

1. Chicago has 31.98% of its population living within the QMSI of public elementary schools. Taipei has 49.64% of its population living within the QMSI of public elementary schools.

2. For subway stations, Chicago has only 8.09% of its population living in the QMSI, while Taipei has 25.99%.

3. For urban parks, Chicago has 44.06% of its population living in the QMSI, while Taipei has 88.80%.

Further, based upon comparison, this research also discovers that the "sweet spot" areas — intersection of the QMSIs of all three community amenities — are mostly distributed along subway lines. With this indication, the research visualizes and supports the objective of improved public transit and walkability as key factors for sustainability in urban design in this case. The research also demonstrates the usefulness of GIS technology's new application in urban design studies for the future. The research shows that this new method has applicability for academic studies in other urban contexts, and for future international urban design and planning.

Indexing (document details)
School: Illinois Institute of Technology
Department: Architecture
School Location: United States -- Illinois
Source: DAI-A 75/02(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Public administration, Transportation planning, Architecture, Urban planning
Keywords: Chicago, New Urbanism, Public transit, Urban sustainability, Walkability
Publication Number: 3574932
ISBN: 978-1-303-52205-5
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