From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Part of the built environment: suburban tract housing in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

The term built environment refers to human-made conditions and is often used in architecture, landscape architecture, urban planning, public health, sociology, and anthropology, among others. [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] These curated spaces provide the setting for human activity and were created to fulfill human desires and needs. [7] The term can refer to a plethora of components including the traditionally associated buildings, cities, public infrastructure, transportation, open space, as well as more conceptual components like farmlands, damned rivers, wildlife management, and even domesticated animals. [7]

High-rise structures and major highway infrastructure as an example of the built environment in Dubai, UAE.

The built environment is made up of physical features. However, when studied, the built environment often highlights the connection between physical space and social consequences. [4] It impacts the environment [8] and how society physically maneuvers and functions, as well as less tangible aspects of society such as socioeconomic inequity and health. Various aspects of the built environment contribute to scholarship on housing and segregation, physical activity, food access, climate change, and environmental racism. [9] [10] [11]

Features of the Built Environment

There are multiple different components that make up the built environment. Below are some prominent examples of what makes up the urban fabric:

Buildings

Buildings are used for a multitude of purposes: residential, commercial, community, institutional, and governmental. Building interiors are often designed to mediate external factors and provide space to conduct activities, whether that is to sleep, eat, work, etc. [12] The structure of the building helps define the space around it, giving form to how individuals move through the space around the building.

Public Infrastructure

Public infrastructure covers a variety of things like roads, highways, pedestrian circulation, public transportation, and parks.

Roads and highways are an important feature of the built environment that enable vehicles to access a wide range of urban and non urban spaces. They are often compared to veins within a cardiovascular system in that they circulate people and materials throughout a city similar to how veins distribute energy and materials to the cells. [13] Pedestrian circulation is vital for the walkability of a city and general access on a human scale. The quality of sidewalks and walkways have an impact on safety and accessibility for those using these spaces. Public transportation is essential in urban areas, particularly in cities and areas that have a diverse population and income range.

Agriculture

Agricultural production accounts for roughly 52% of U.S. land use. [14] Not only does population growth cause an expansion of cities, it also necessitates more agriculture to accommodate the demand for food for an expanding population.

History

Built environment as a term was coined in the 1980s, becoming widespread in the 1990s [12] and places the concept in direct contrast to the supposedly "unbuilt" environment. [15] The term describes a wide range of fields that form an interdisciplinary concept that has been accepted as an idea since classical antiquity [16] and potentially before. Through the study of anthropology, the progression of the built environment into what it is today has been able to be examined. When people are able to travel outside of urban centers and areas where the built environment is already prominent, it pushes the boundaries of said built environment into new areas. While there are other factors that influence the built environment, like advancements in architecture or agriculture, transportation allowed for the spread and expansion of the built environment.

Pre-industrial Revolution

Agriculture, the cultivation of soil to grow crops and animals to provide food as well as products, was first developed about 12,000 years ago. [17] This switch, also called the Neolithic Revolution, [18] was the beginning of favoring permanent settlements and altering the land to grow crops and farm animals. This can be thought of as the start of the built environment, the first attempt to make permanent changes to the surrounding environment for human needs. The first appearance of cities was around 7500 BCE, dotted along where land was fertile and good for agricultural use. [19] In these early communities, a priority was to ensure basic needs were being met. The built environment, while not as extensive as it is today, was beginning to be cultivated with the implementation of buildings, paths, farm land, domestication of animals and plants, etc. Over the next several thousand years, these smaller cities and villages grew into larger ones where trade, culture, education, and economics were driving factors. [19] As cities began to grow, they needed to accommodate more people, as well as shifted from focusing on meeting survival needs to prioritizing comfort and desires – it is important to note that there are still many individuals today who do not have their basic needs met and this idea of a shift is within the framework of the evolution of society. [12] This shift caused the built aspect of these cities to grow and expand to meet the growing population needs.

Industrial Revolution

The pinnacle of city growth was during the Industrial Revolution due to the demand for jobs created by the rise in factories. [20] Cities rapidly grew from the 1880s to the early 1900s within the United States. This demand led individuals to move from farms to cities [20] which resulted in the need to expand city infrastructure and created a boom in population size. [21] This rapid growth in population in cities led to issues of noise, sanitation, health problems, traffic jams, pollution, compact living quarters, etc. [22] In response to these issues, mass transit, trolleys, cable cars, and subways, were built and prioritized in an effort to improve the quality of the built environment. An example of this during the industrial revolution was the City Beautiful movement. The City Beautiful movement emerged in the 1890s as a result of the disorder and unhealthy living conditions within industrial cities. [23] The movement promoted improved circulation, civic centers, better sanitation, and public spaces. With these improvements, the goal was to improve the quality of life for those living in them, as well as make them more profitable. [23] The City Beautiful movement, while declined in popularity over the years, provided a range of urban reforms. The movement highlighted city planning, civic education, public transportation, and municipal housekeeping. [23]

Post Industrial Revolution to Present

The invention of cars, as well as train usage, became more accessible to the general masses due to the advancements in the steel, chemicals, and fuel generated production (hitory how 2nd rev changed). In the 1920s, cars became more accessible to the general public due to Henry Ford’s advances in the assembly line production. [24] With this new burst of personal transportation, new infrastructure was built to accommodate. Freeways were first built in 1956 to attempt to eliminate unsafe roads, traffic jams, and insufficient routes. [25] The creation of freeways and interstate transportation systems opened up the possibility and ease of transportation outside a person's city. This allowed ease of travel not previously found and changed the fabric of the built environment. New streets were being built within cities to accommodate cars as they became increasingly popular, railway lines were being built to connect areas not previously connected, for both public transportation as well as goods transportation. With these changes, the scope of a city began to expand outside its borders. The widespread use of cars and public transportation allowed for the implementation of suburbs; the working individual was able to commute long distances to work everyday. [26] Suburbs blurred the line of city “borders”, the day-to-day life that may have originally been relegated to a pedestrian radius now encompassed a wide range of distances due to the use of cars and public transportation. This increased accessibility allowed for the continued expansion of the built environment.

Currently, the built environment is typically used to describe the interdisciplinary field that encompasses the design, construction, management, and use of man-made physical influence as an interrelated whole. The concept also includes the relationship of these elements of the built environment with human activities over time—rather than a particular element in isolation or at a single moment in time, these aspects act together via the multiplier effect. The field today draws upon areas such as economics, law, public policy, sociology, anthropology, public health, management, geography, design, engineering, technology, and environmental sustainability to create a large umbrella that is the built environment. [15]

There are some in modern academia who look at the built environment as all encompassing, that there is no natural environment left. This argument comes from the idea that the built environment not only refers to that which is built, arranged, or curated, but also to what is managed, controlled, or allowed to continue. What is referred to as “nature” today can be seen as only a commodity that is placed into an environment that is constructed to fulfill the human will and desire. [27] This commodity allows humans to enjoy the view and experience of nature without it inconveniencing their day-to-day life. [27] It can be argued that the forests and wild-life parks that are held on a pedestal and are seemingly natural are in reality curated and allowed to exist for the enjoyment of the human experience. The planet has been irrevocably changed by human interaction. Wildlife has been hunted, harvested, brought to the brink of extinction, modified to fit human needs, the list goes on. This argument juxtaposes the argument that the built environment is only what is built, that the forests, oceans, wildlife, and other aspects of nature are their own entity.

Impact of the Built Environment

The term built environment encompasses a broad range of categories, all of which have potential impacts. When looking at these potential impacts, the environment, as well as people, are heavily affected.

Health

The built environment can heavily impact the public’s health. Historically, unsanitary conditions and overcrowding within cities and urban environments have led to infectious diseases and other health threats. [28] Dating back to Georges-Eugene Haussmann's comprehensive plans for urban Paris in the 1850s, concern for lack of air-flow and sanitary living conditions has inspired many strong city planning efforts. During the 19th century in particular, the connection between the built environment and public health became more apparent as life expectancy decreased and diseases, as well as epidemics, increased. [28] Today, the built environment can expose individuals to pollutants or toxins that cause chronic diseases like asthma, diabetes, and coronary vascular disease along with many others. [28] There is evidence to suggest that chronic disease can be reduced through healthy behaviors like a proper active lifestyle, good nutrition, and reduced exposure to toxins and pollutants. [28] Yet, the built environment is not always designed to facilitate those healthy behaviors. Many urban environments, in particular suburbs, are automobile reliant making it difficult or unreasonable to walk or bike places. This condition not only adds to pollution, but can also make it hard to maintain a proper active lifestyle. Public health research has expanded the list of concerns associated with the built environment to include healthy food access, community gardens, mental health, [29] physical health, [30] [10] [31] walkability, and cycling mobility. [32] Designing areas of cities with good public health is linked to creating opportunities for physical activity, community involvement, and equal opportunity within the built environment. Urban forms that encourage physical activity and provide adequate public resources for involvement and upward mobility are proven to have far healthier populations than those that discourage such uses of the built environment. [33]

Social

Housing and segregation

Features in the built environment present physical barriers which constitute the boundaries between neighborhoods. [34] Roads and railways, for instance, play a large role in how people can feasibly navigate their environment. [35] This can result in the isolation of certain communities from various resources and from each other. [35] The placement of roads, highways, and sidewalks also determines what access people have to jobs and childcare close to home, especially in areas where most people do not own vehicles. Walkability directly influences community, so the way a neighborhood is built affects the outcomes and opportunities of the community that lives there. [36] Even less physically imposing features, such as architectural design, can distinguish the boundaries between communities and decrease movement across neighborhood lines. [37]

The segregation of communities is significant because the qualities of any given space directly impact the wellbeing of the people who live and work there. [4] George Galster and Patrick Sharkey refer to this variation in geographic context as "spatial opportunity structure," and claim that the built environment influences socioeconomic outcomes and general welfare. [4] For instance, the history of redlining and housing segregation means that there is less green space in many Black and Hispanic neighborhoods. Access to parks and green space has been proven to be good for mental health which puts these communities at a disadvantage. [9] The historical segregation has contributed to environmental injustice, as these neighborhoods suffer from hotter summers since urban asphalt absorbs more heat than trees and grass. [38] The effects of spatial segregation initiatives in the built environment, such as redlining in the 1930s and 1940s, are long lasting. The inability to feasibly move from forcibly economically depressed areas into more prosperous ones creates fiscal disadvantages that are passed down generationally. [39] With proper public education access tied to the economic prosperity of a neighborhood, many formerly redlined areas continue to lack educational opportunities for residents and, thus, job and higher-income opportunities are limited. [40]

Environmental

The built environment has a multitude of impacts on the planet, some of the most prominent effects are greenhouse gas emissions and Urban Heat Island Effect.

The built environment expands along with factors like population and consumption which directly impact the output of greenhouse gases. As cities and urban areas grow, the need for transportation and structures grows as well. In 2006, transportation accounted for 28% of total greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S. [41] Building's design, location, orientation, and construction process heavily influence greenhouse gas emissions. [41] Commercial, industrial, and residential buildings account for roughly 43% of U.S. CO2 emissions in energy usage. [41] In 2005, agricultural land use accounted for 10%-12% of total human-caused greenhouse gas emissions worldwide. [41]

Urban Heat Islands are pockets of higher temperature areas, typically within cities, that effect the environment, as well as quality of life. [42] [43] Urban Heat Islands are caused by reduction of natural landscape in favor of urban materials like asphalt, concrete, brick, etc. [42] This change from natural landscape to urban materials is the epitome of the built environment and its expansion.

See also

References

  1. ^ Sussman, Ann (2014). Cognitive architecture : designing for how we respond to the built environment. Taylor & Francis. ISBN  978-0-367-46860-6. OCLC  1224041975.
  2. ^ Handy, Susan L.; Boarnet, Marlon G.; Ewing, Reid; Killingsworth, Richard E. (2002-08-01). "How the built environment affects physical activity: Views from urban planning". American Journal of Preventive Medicine. 23 (2): 64–73. doi: 10.1016/S0749-3797(02)00475-0. ISSN  0749-3797. PMID  12133739.
  3. ^ Sallis, James F.; Floyd, Myron F.; Rodriguez, Daniel A.; Saelens, Brian E. (February 2012). "The Role of Built Environments in Physical Activity, Obesity, and CVD". Circulation. 125 (5): 729–37. doi: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.110.969022. PMC  3315587. PMID  22311885.
  4. ^ a b c d Galster, George; Sharkey (2017). "Spatial Foundations of Inequality: A Conceptual Model and Empirical Overview". RSF: The Russell Sage Foundation Journal of the Social Sciences. 3 (2): 1. doi: 10.7758/rsf.2017.3.2.01. ISSN  2377-8253. S2CID  131768289.
  5. ^ Lawrence, Denise L.; Low, Setha M. (1990). "The Built Environment and Spatial Form". Annual Review of Anthropology. 19: 453–505. doi: 10.1146/annurev.an.19.100190.002321. ISSN  0084-6570. JSTOR  2155973.
  6. ^ "The Built Environment Assessment Tool Manual | DNPAO | CDC". www.cdc.gov. 2019-02-05. Retrieved 2021-03-29.
  7. ^ a b McClure, Bartuska, Wendy, Tom (2007). The Built Environment: A Collaborative Inquiry into Design and Planning (2nd ed.). Canada and Hoboken, New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons. pp. 5–6.
  8. ^ Omer, Abdeen Mustafa (2015). Built Environment : Identifying, Developing, and Moving Sustainable Communities Through Renewable Energy. e-book: Nova Science Publishers, Inc. pp. xxix. ISBN  978-1-63463-339-0.
  9. ^ a b Carmona, Matthew (2019-01-02). "Place value: place quality and its impact on health, social, economic and environmental outcomes". Journal of Urban Design. 24 (1): 1–48. doi: 10.1080/13574809.2018.1472523. ISSN  1357-4809. S2CID  115751848.
  10. ^ a b Ghimire, Ramesh; Ferreira, Susana; Green, Gary T.; Poudyal, Neelam C.; Cordell, H. Ken; Thapa, Janani R. (June 2017). "Green Space and Adult Obesity in the United States". Ecological Economics. 136: 201–212. doi: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2017.02.002. ISSN  0921-8009.
  11. ^ Rahman, T; Cushing RA; Jackson RJ (2011). "Contributions of built environment to childhood obesity". Mt Sinai J Med. 78 (1): 49–57. doi: 10.1002/msj.20235. PMID  21259262.
  12. ^ a b c McClure, Bartuska, Wendy, Tom (2007). The Built Environment: A Collaborative Inquiry into Design and Planning (2md ed.). Canada and Hoboken, New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons.
  13. ^ Samaniego, Horacio; Moses, Melanie E. (2008). "Cities as organisms: Allometric scaling of urban road networks". Journal of Transport and Land Use. 1 (1): 21–39. doi: 10.5198/jtlu.v1i1.29. ISSN  1938-7849. JSTOR  26201607.
  14. ^ "USDA ERS - Land Use, Land Value & Tenure". www.ers.usda.gov. Retrieved 2022-12-16.
  15. ^ a b Moffatt, Sebastian; Kohler, Niklaus (2008-06-01). "Conceptualizing the built environment as a social–ecological system". Building Research & Information. 36 (3): 248–268. doi: 10.1080/09613210801928131. ISSN  0961-3218. S2CID  111275156.
  16. ^ Burns, Alfred (1976). "Hippodamus and the Planned City". Historia: Zeitschrift für Alte Geschichte. 25 (4): 414–428. ISSN  0018-2311. JSTOR  4435519.
  17. ^ "The Development of Agriculture | National Geographic Society". education.nationalgeographic.org. Retrieved 2022-12-16.
  18. ^ "Neolithic Revolution". HISTORY. Retrieved 2022-12-16.
  19. ^ a b "The History of Cities | National Geographic Society". education.nationalgeographic.org. Retrieved 2022-12-16.
  20. ^ a b "Industrial Revolution and Technology | National Geographic Society". education.nationalgeographic.org. Retrieved 2022-12-16.
  21. ^ "modernization - Population change | Britannica". www.britannica.com. Retrieved 2022-12-16.
  22. ^ "City Life in the Late 19th Century | Rise of Industrial America, 1876-1900 | U.S. History Primary Source Timeline | Classroom Materials at the Library of Congress". Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. 20540 USA. Retrieved 2022-12-16.
  23. ^ a b c Jon Butler, ed. (2013). Oxford research encyclopedia of American history. New York, NY. ISBN  978-0-19-932917-5. OCLC  1258269397.
  24. ^ "1920s consumption (article) | 1920s America". Khan Academy. Retrieved 2022-12-16.
  25. ^ "The Interstate Highway System". HISTORY. Retrieved 2022-12-16.
  26. ^ "City and Suburb". National Museum of American History. 2017-02-28. Retrieved 2022-12-16.
  27. ^ a b Michelbach, Christian. "I Hate Nature". Martha Schwartz Partners. Retrieved 2022-12-16.
  28. ^ a b c d Perdue, Wendy Collins; Stone, Lesley A.; Gostin, Lawrence O. (September 2003). "The Built Environment and Its Relationship to the Public's Health: The Legal Framework". American Journal of Public Health. 93 (9): 1390–1394. ISSN  0090-0036. PMC  1447979. PMID  12948949.
  29. ^ Assari, A Birashk, B Nik, M Mousavi Naghdbishi, R (2016). "IMPACT OF BUILT ENVIRONMENT ON MENTAL HEALTH: REVIEW OF TEHRAN CITY IN IRAN". International Journal on Technical and Physical Problems of Engineering. 8 (26): 81–87.{{ cite journal}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list ( link)
  30. ^ Boncinelli, Fabio; Riccioli, Francesco; Marone, Enrico (May 2015). "Do forests help to keep my body mass index low?". Forest Policy and Economics. 54: 11–17. doi: 10.1016/j.forpol.2015.02.003. hdl: 11568/936732. ISSN  1389-9341.
  31. ^ Sander, Heather A.; Ghosh, Debarchana; Hodson, Cody B. (August 2017). "Varying age-gender associations between body mass index and urban greenspace". Urban Forestry & Urban Greening. 26: 1–10. doi: 10.1016/j.ufug.2017.05.016. ISSN  1618-8667. PMC  5716478. PMID  29225562.
  32. ^ Lee, V; Mikkelsen, L; Srikantharajah, J; Cohen, L. "Strategies for Enhancing the Built Environment to Support Healthy Eating and Active Living". Prevention Institute. Retrieved 29 April 2012.[ permanent dead link]
  33. ^ Frank, Lawrence D.; Engelke, Peter O. (2001-11-01). "The Built Environment and Human Activity Patterns: Exploring the Impacts of Urban Form on Public Health". Journal of Planning Literature. 16 (2): 202–218. doi: 10.1177/08854120122093339. ISSN  0885-4122. S2CID  153978150.
  34. ^ Kramer, Rory (2017). "Defensible Spaces in Philadelphia: Exploring Neighborhood Boundaries Through Spatial Analysis". RSF: The Russell Sage Foundation Journal of the Social Sciences. 3 (2): 81–101. doi: 10.7758/rsf.2017.3.2.04. ISSN  2377-8253. JSTOR  10.7758/rsf.2017.3.2.04. S2CID  149167954.
  35. ^ a b Roberto, Elizabeth and Jackelyn Hwang. 2017. “Barriers to Integration: Physical Boundaries and the Spatial Structure of Residential Segregation.” Working paper, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY.
  36. ^ Pando, Patricia (2011). "In the Nickel, Houston's Fifth Ward" (PDF). Houston History Magazine.
  37. ^ Small, Mario Luis (2004). Villa Victoria. University of Chicago Press. doi: 10.7208/chicago/9780226762937.001.0001. ISBN  978-0-226-76292-0.
  38. ^ Plumer, Brad; Popovich, Nadja; Palmer, Brian (2020-08-24). "How Decades of Racist Housing Policy Left Neighborhoods Sweltering". The New York Times. ISSN  0362-4331. Retrieved 2021-03-29.
  39. ^ Aaronson, Daniel; Hartley, Daniel; Mazumder, Bhashkar (November 2021). "The Effects of the 1930s HOLC "Redlining" Maps". American Economic Journal: Economic Policy. 13 (4): 355–392. doi: 10.1257/pol.20190414. ISSN  1945-7731. S2CID  204505153.
  40. ^ Case, Anne (2020). Deaths of Despair and the Future of Capitalism. Princeton, NJ: The Princeton University Press. ISBN  9780691190785.
  41. ^ a b c d Younger, Margalit; Morrow-Almeida, Heather R.; Vindigni, Stephen M.; Dannenberg, Andrew L. (2008-11-01). "The Built Environment, Climate Change, and Health: Opportunities for Co-Benefits". American Journal of Preventive Medicine. 35 (5): 517–526. doi: 10.1016/j.amepre.2008.08.017. ISSN  0749-3797.
  42. ^ a b US EPA, OAR (2014-06-17). "Learn About Heat Islands". www.epa.gov. Retrieved 2022-12-16.
  43. ^ US EPA, OAR (2014-06-17). "Heat Island Impacts". www.epa.gov. Retrieved 2022-12-16.

Further reading

External links