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Design Principles for Protection and Creation of Urban Wetland Landscape as Urban Climate Change Adaptation Strategy

Oana Baloi

Refugees welcome in parks book cover_edi

The Netherlands


Disaster Risk Reduction, Resilience

Wetland protection and creation is a major concern for today's current development of human settlements. Developing cities are facing challenges when seeking for wealth and safety, in the context of both climate change and thriving for economic independence. The wetlands within Kigali contain precious biodiversity and at the same time provide an important feature to ecosystem services. Having such a precious asset, the city can offer an important balance of biodiversity and human activities, if designed and managed properly. Meanwhile, the ecosystems provided by the wetland are challenged by settlement expansion and, at same time, the settlements are threatened by flood and landslides.

In this thesis, the current city development strategy and current physical structure are investigated with the aim of providing guidelines for including protection and creation of an urban wetland park as an important asset of future developments. The design prospects address the adaptability of spaces, highly important for future development; and landscape services to assure productivity and meaning of the landscape nearby the human settlements. The design regards urban development bonding with wetlands biodiversity, in order to stabilize a certain environmental balance of dwellings, human activities and natural ecosystems. The systematic design focuses firstly on risk reduction, approaching wetlands as defence system against landslide and minimising the risk of flooding, secondly on the productivity of the landscape services with a clear division between human touch and natural ecosystems, integrated in a green public space in the core of the city.

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