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Inicio  /  Water  /  Vol: 15 Par: 15 (2023)  /  Artículo

Innovative Urban Blue Space Design in a Changing Climate: Transition Models in the Baltic Sea Region

Izabela Maria Burda and Lucyna Nyka    


Waterfront areas in cities are subject to constant changes. The desire to integrate the transformed waterside areas with the urban fabric involves shaping high-quality public spaces related to water, which are often referred to as urban blue spaces (UBS). The aim of the research was to examine the transformation processes of urban waterfront areas in the Baltic Sea Region and identify emerging transition models and types of blue public spaces. The methodological framework of this study is based on qualitative analysis of urban form with respect to coastal and riverine waters. An introductory analysis of 50 cases of transformations was conducted, and 12 were selected for further investigation: Tallinn, Pärnu (Estonia), Copenhagen, Køge, Aarhus (Denmark), Helsinki, Turku (Finland), Stockholm, Malmö, Luleå, Sundsvall, and Ystad (Sweden). As the outcome of the study, the authors indicate that the existing hard land?water interfaces were transformed into soft transition zones where new types of blue public spaces were created with different relationships to water. Synergies were identified between public space design, flood protection measures, and climate adaptation schemes. Finally, the findings highlight the need to verify the existing planning regulations and make them more flexible and effective in guiding the sustainable waterfront design processes.

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