Nature in the city or the city in nature?

In what follows is presented an abstract for a coming paper tackling the topic of nature in cities.

Paper 1:  Cities of the Future Will Still Have Borders?

by Dario Tremolada

Since the beginnings, humans have exploited the natural landscape in order to obtain raw materials and food, significantly increasing the quality of life at the expense of the biological system . From the caves it moved to the construction of the first hut villages, to get to small towns of stones and bricks till the big  cities of our times made of concrete, steel and asphalt. If a time for military reasons cities were enclosed by defense walls and had a small concentration of buildings surrounded by large green areas, modern society today in any areas of the globe is shifting into a new dimension, where the nature is a small percentage surrounded by the majesty of the megalopolis. Likewise in the landscapes that we tend to define natural as cultivated fields, woods or simple mountain slopes, actually the hand of man is more than evident. Interventions to reclaim wetlands, dam construction, or the deforestation in order to create fields, inevitably change the scenery making it different from what had been created by the natural process, thus creating green landscapes of artificial origin. Hence, can we still define as natural a public garden situated in a big city although this has been created by man? Which are the limits that the human beings should keep in mind to avoid going at odds with the natural evolution process? The modern megalopolis no longer have physical boundaries and only in the most ancient cities these are still visible for cultural and historical reasons, but just look at the modern American cities to realize that these could be extended indefinitely, creating a system of artificial parks and buildings where nature blends with the human artifacts. The future policies of urban planning must be able to deal with an exponential increase of the world population, guaranteeing the maintenance of natural areas not yet eroded by man and developing sustainable cities where the green component is not overlooked.

Keywords: artificial, habitat, transformation, soil sealing, borders.  

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