Researchers work on urban model that can be used to evaluate city resilience

Researchers from the New Zealand Centre for Sustainable Cities have created an urban model that can be used to evaluate city resilience.

Download the paper here

The model considers the city (Wellington) as a complex system and explores the dynamic relations between human activities, environmental effects and potential natural disasters faced under different policy scenarios. This gives insights that may be useful for policy to enhance the city’s resilience, for example by modelling the potential for reduction in transportation energy use, or by examining changes in the vulnerability of the city’s housing stock and transport system to sea level rise.

Pengjun Zhao, Ralph Chapman, Ed Randal and Philippa Howden-Chapman have created an integrated land use – transport – environment model for the Wellington region (WILUTE). This will be used to evaluate individual transport and land use policies and scenarios, with a particular focus on transport-related environmental and public health effects, and to study the relationship between land use and transport. This powerful simulation programme can also be used for other cities within and outside New Zealand.

The model will examine 4 key questions in this project:
1) How do current and future land use and transport policies affect economic activities and property development in the Wellington region?
2) How does the development of the transport and land use system affect local air quality and public health?
3) Can new transport infrastructure (e.g. new light rail or cycling lanes) change the features of current transport modes and promote green transportation?
4) To what extent can transport pricing policies (e.g. car parking, oil prices) reduce transport emissions and achieve public health co-benefits?