Sustainable Cities™

Glattpark Opfikon: Strategic Planning

Cities are characterized by the different types of urbanization processes that they endure over time. However, a city is better remembered by the spatial designs which accompany this transformation.

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Photo: Christoph Ruckstuhl

Cities are characterized by the different types of urbanization processes that they endure over time. However, a city is better remembered by the spatial designs which accompany this transformation. The key to a successful evolution of a city's sustainability and economics is how planners, architects, and city officials collaborate to recognize, interpret, and utilize the full potential of urbanity.

Transit Backbone
Zürick, Switzerland is one of Europe's best examples for a sustainable city combining economic and environmental strategies. The major component in Zurich's urban planning model is its electric transit infrastructure with an advanced signal technology system and dedicated lanes for buses and surface trams. Due to the "transit priority" program started in the late 1970s, the transit system has been undergoing constant upgrades, resulting in a dense and interconnected network.

Connecting Glattal
It is of no surprise that the Glattalbahn transit project has been implemented in Zurich. Spanning 12.7 km the tramway threads the districts of Glattal into a single urban landscape and has enabled the central Glattal area to become the fastest-growing business district in Switzerland. Located in central Glattal is Glattpark Opfikon, a mixed used neighborhood aiming to have a balance between work and living. Opfikerpark brings the ecological component to the neighborhood with a naturally made and swimmable lake, designed with biodiversity in mind.

Dedicated Strategies
Switzerland's success in urban development is a result of complex and dedicated efforts to link spatial planning, architecture, transportation, and business promotion. Recently the Swiss keep this tradition by launching two initiatives, New Urban Quality (NQU) and Foundation For Global Sustainability (FFGS). NUQ is a national research program focused to the ongoing development of innovation in urban design and planning. FFGS presents several frameworks for transitioning from industrial to sustainable models.
 

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Last updated Tuesday, January 21, 2014

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