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Urban EcologyPatterns, Processes, and Applications$
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Jari Niemelä, Jürgen H. Breuste, Thomas Elmqvist, Glenn Guntenspergen, Philip James, and Nancy E. McIntyre

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199563562

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199563562.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 22 October 2021

The Role of Ecosystem Services in Contemporary Urban Planning

The Role of Ecosystem Services in Contemporary Urban Planning

(p.228) Chapter 4.5 The Role of Ecosystem Services in Contemporary Urban Planning
Urban Ecology

Johan Colding

Oxford University Press

Urban sprawl is often characterised as a serious land use problem. It refers to the spread of urban congestion into adjoining suburbs and rural areas, often resulting in the loss of ecosystems and their services. This chapter reviews two of the most prevalent planning strategies proposed to combat urban sprawl, i.e. smart growth (or new urbanism) and green infrastructure planning. The former is predominantly derived from a frustration over the failure of American planning projects, and is increasingly adopted among planners in North American and European metropolitan regions. The latter is predominantly proposed by ecologists and biodiversity conservationists, and has shaped conservation planning in many countries. Both planning strategies propose compact urban development as a way to combat adverse effects of urban sprawl. However, and as pointed out in this chapter, many types of ecosystem services are generated in the developed landscape, also in sprawling suburban settings. It is also important to account for ecosystem services in smart growth projects and to engage a wider set of urban residents in management of these services in order to mitigate ecological illiteracy. The chapter elucidates some of the key characteristics and propositions of both approaches and provides examples of urban designs that hold potential to work as frameworks in contributing to sustainable governance of ecosystem services.

Keywords:   urban sprawl, smart growth, green infrastructure planning, ecosystem services, ecological illiteracy

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