Infoscience

Thesis

Monitoring opérationnel pour l'intégration des enjeux de durabilité aux projets de régénération de friches urbaines

In a context where the territorial development stakeholders seek to limit urban sprawl, urban brownfields represent an important potential: their regeneration allows an increased density within the existing built fabric and a revitalization at the neighborhood scale. Many initiatives of this kind can be observed in Swiss and European agglomerations. However, because of their complex nature, a large number of them refer only in an implicit, partial, or superficial manner to the notion of sustainability. As such, it appears necessary to have means of assessment embedded in the current practice of urbanism, allowing a proactive, structured, and continuous integration of the sustainability issues in the dynamics of urban brownfield regeneration projects. In other terms, it implies to have the necessary means to implement an operational monitoring specifically adapted to this type of projects. Among the few sustainability evaluation approaches specific to urban brownfield regeneration projects, none allows a fully operational monitoring, sustaining the holistic integration of environmental, sociocultural and economic issues at the neighborhood scale. In parallel, we know that sustainability monitoring solutions have proved successful in other fields such as business management. Even if the indicators may differ, the underlying principles of monitoring stay the same. Consequently, this research suggests drawing on the hybridization of existing knowledge and skills to create a novel operational monitoring tool. The goal is to bring together elements from different disciplines in a new and innovative way, in order to obtain a new tool that efficiently combines the most relevant elements. The results of this research are structured in four steps. The first step is the critical analysis of existing know-how which allows identifying two distinct approaches that have the potential to meet the specific requirements for the operational monitoring tool. The second step corresponds to their adaptation and combination in order to create a new interactive and interdisciplinary tool, named SIPRIUS+. The third step allows verifying and optimizing the tool’s performances thanks to test applications on case studies located in Switzerland, Belgium, and France. Finally, the fourth step involves meeting the stakeholders of the three case studies in order to verify the level of added value of the tool as a support for the practical integration of sustainability in their project. What emerges from these interactions is that, whereas the use of such a tool implies a change in the management of these projects, the evolutions to adopt in order to include this practice appear not only feasible, but realistic and desired. The present thesis brings new, in-depth and up-to-date knowledge about the multiple issues associated with urban brownfield regeneration projects. This thesis also strives to bring a concrete contribution to the current practices by offering, to stakeholders involved in these interventions, new means to integrate and follow up sustainability criteria. The multiple investigations carried out highlight that the suggested approach provides insightful information and knowledge for better decision making, from the initial brownfield to the regenerated site.

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