Water sensitive urban design: Investigating opportunities for Thiruvananthapuram

Ajai Chandran, C. K. and Krishne Gowda (2014) Water sensitive urban design: Investigating opportunities for Thiruvananthapuram. Environmental Quality Management, 24 (1). pp. 1-13.

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1002/tqem.21381

Abstract

Balancing the health and sustainable use of water bodies with human needs and social benefits Civilizations have been established along waterways such as rivers, lakes, canals, and ocean fronts and within river valleys and watersheds throughout history. The benefits of locating centers of human habitation near water bodies are many. In addition to ensuring the availability of drinking water vital to human life and meeting the needs of agriculture, proximity to water bodies facilitates trade and commerce, transportation, sanitation and hygiene, and entertainment. Proximity to waterways can also lead to human interactions and relationships with water bodies as expressions of identity and culture. However, along with the numerous advantages, the intersection of natural water bodies and human settlements creates specific challenges. Degradation and contamination of the water body and its natural environs, reduction of and/or changes to aquatic life, and depletion of potable water are but a few of the impacts of urbanization on water bodies. Natural and man‐made disasters and geological issues (e.g., changing floodplains/topography, inundation, erosion, sea level rise, etc.) add further risks and challenges, all of which have the potential to affect the quality of human life. The concept of environmental sustainability has the potential to address many of these challenges and offers significant positive impacts on urban development as well. Environmental sustainability can be described as a condition/state with a net zero impact or cost to the natural environment from development activities, and in which economic, social, and environmental benefits can be realized (Wong, 2011). Especially in urban areas with water environments (e.g., lakes, rivers, coastal waters, backwaters, canals, etc.), water‐sensitive planning is imperative. Sustainable water resource management aims to protect the environment from the effects of the urban water cycle, including consumption habits, and the discharge of wastewater and stormwater. In addition, considerations for urban aesthetics, including heritage conservation and place making, “green infrastructure,” waterfront parks and trails, and community spaces, have the potential to integrate existing social fabric with new development activities to create livable communities.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: biodegradation, disaster, drinking water, hygiene, India, Kerala, quality of life, sanitation, sustainability, Thiruvananthapuram, urban design, urban development, water availability, water pollution
Subjects: A Arts and Humanities > IDS
Divisions: Department of > Institute of Development Studies
Depositing User: Arshiya Kousar
Date Deposited: 11 Jun 2019 05:53
Last Modified: 24 Dec 2020 07:37
URI: http://eprints.uni-mysore.ac.in/id/eprint/2922

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