Ref: Porta S, Renne J. (2005), Linking urban design to sustainability: formal indicators of social urban sustainability field research in Perth, Western Australia, «Urban Design International», 10 1, 51-64.

Download the paper

***   ***

The making of a livable urban community is a complex endeavor. For much of the 20th Century planners and engineers believed that modern and rational decision-making would create successful cities. Today, political leaders across the globe are considering ways to promote sustainable development and the concepts of New Urbanism are making their way from the drawing board to the ground. While much has changed in the world, the creation of a successful street is as much of an art today as it was in the 1960s. Our work seeks to investigate ‘street life’ in cities as a crucial factor towards community success. What are the components of the neighborhood and street form that contributes to the richness of street life? To answer this question we rely on the literature. The aim of the Formal Indicators of Social Urban Sustainability study is to measure the formal components of a neighborhood and street that theorists have stated important in promoting sustainability. This paper will describe how this concept helps to bridge urban design and sustainability. It will describe the tool and show how this was applied in a comparative assessment of Joondalup and Fremantle, two urban centers in the Perth metropolitan area.