A land capacity analysis method using GIS tools, as exemplified by the city of Warsaw, Poland

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The generation of forecasts regarding the further physical development of urbanised areas is a key part of spatial planning, and indeed integrated planning as conceived more broadly. A key role in the process is played by land capacity analysis, which permits both an assessment of the current state of utilisation and management of an area and the possibilities for development – by transformation or augmentation or else the de novo designation of land for building; along with indications as to how that land may be used. Further upgrading of methods by which to analyse land capacity can thus be seen as a priority where the improvement of planning methodology is concerned. According to Kotarbiński [1973], a method is a planner’s way of pursuing a complex task that entails a defined selection and juxtaposition or configuration of component activities that seek to bring about a single, identified objective, while at the same time being suitable for multiple (repeat) use. However, the methodological issues actually representing such a key aspect in effective urban planning (here conceived of as an inherent feature of the process by which development is managed) are only taken up very rarely in Poland, and if they are – this is mostly as some kind of side issue. It is now evermore typical to see authors [like Markowski 2010] espousing the idea that post-1990 Poland has experienced regress (“gone backwards”) when it comes to urban-planning methodology. In this, it is also worth recalling how the output from Polish urban-planning thought is seen to include many examples of applied methods that have now passed into history. To be included among these is the threshold analysis method after Stanisław Malisz1, as well as the ”Warsaw Optimisation” method2 after Kolipiński [2016].
Book of proceedings: Annual AESOP Congress, Spaces of Dialog for Places of Dignity, Lisbon, 11-14th July, 2017
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