Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Development of a Framework for Practical Evaluation Tools for Urban Sustainability

This work package builds on the Review of Existing Evaluation Tools; the Review of Case Studies from a range of European projects from different sectors and scales and at different life cycle stages; and the investigation of Decision Making Procedures, tools and benchmarks used in practice.

A framework or decision support system (DSS) containing practical evaluation tools for urban sustainability has been developed to enable a consistent approach to sustainability across a range of urban infrastructure projects including water/sewage, waste, transport, energy, green/blue areas and buildings & land use.

The framework consists of two parts (a database and a guidance system), which are intricately linked: The database includes information that can be used to analyse and improve the sustainability of urban infrastructure, whatever the size or type. Data is available for different levels of expertise and therefore provides a facility to enable discussion between decision makers and stakeholders from all different levels to obtain and understand information that is relevant and useful for them. The database contains case study projects from across Europe that illustrated where sustainability has been considered; tools (both theoretical tools and those used in practice) that can be used to guide and analyse consideration of sustainability in a practical way; EU legislation that has to be followed in member countries; and a glossary.

The guidance proposes a monitoring process that enables every user to track the inclusion of sustainability within a users own project. The guidance is the interactive part of the DSS that proposes, via a matrix and a checklist, to integrate sustainability concerns in the overall decision-making process of an urban infrastructure project.

PETUS has undergone a testing process, which has fine tuned the framework, and it is now a valuable tool available for use by anyone but of particular relevance to those within the urban infrastructure industry.

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