The brownfields, unused urban spaces in urban centers, may have other uses in addition to their rearrangement for new industrial, commercial, public facilities or housing uses. As reported inThe Dirt , cities like Chicago, New York or Filadelfia have carried out projects for the reuse of urban voids by implanting solar farms of greater or lesser size in them, opening up a possibility that has not been explored until now, such as the valorization of these spaces as power plants based on renewable sources -in this case, solar- when normally we have thought of solar plants as something necessarily far from urban centers.
The more or less futuristic proposals to use other built spaces such as, for example, the highways still seem far away. For its part, the use of roofs, roofs or facades in buildings and facilities does have a certain trajectory, although the potential for using these spaces is still enormous. The option we are discussing today, on the other hand, seems to me to be an intelligent and practical solution to generate a double urban dividend: generate renewable electricity production capacity and, at the same time, revalue abandoned land to reactivate its social utility. .Exelon City Solar (Chicago), for example , is presented as the largest urban solar generation plant, with more than 32,000 photovoltaic panels and has thus garnered some attention as the most visible project. The recently held Brownfields 2011 conference has dedicated several sessions related to this topic. :
- Waste to Watts: Redeveloping Closed Landfills for Renewable Energy
- Brightfields: Identifying, Financing and Developing Renewable Energy Projects on Brownfield Sites
- Renewable Energy at Contaminated Sites
- Reaching for the Sun: Strategies for Developing Solar Farms on Municipal Brownfields Sites
A 3D recreation:
And some real pictures:
With the title I want to open a new way to catalog and document certain solutions that I think will be necessary in the coming years. The “post-crisis” thing sounds optimistic because at this point we no longer know very well if there will be a day after this crisis which, in our case, has clear links with the urban model that we have followed for too long, but it is unquestionable that we need to think of imaginative solutions for so many burdens on the territory. That is also why “adaptive urban planning“, because we have to adapt to the new circumstances, where the emblematic urban project is doomed to disappear. There is no money and, who knows, maybe the public is no longer willing to accept certain projects, although I have my doubts about this. But that is another topic. What is evident is that something must be done, for example, with so many urbanized plots that will not be finally built in the coming years. As in other solutions that seek to provide temporary or permanent responses to the failure of traditional logic -we have already spoken at another time about commercial premises abandoned by the crisis-, I suppose that regulatory questions can always be put on the table and administrative departure. It is not easy for the urban procedure to leave room for the installation of solar plants on land where the owner planned to build. But maybe it’s time to start thinking about it, to look at all these spaces with a different logic.
You may also be interested in:
- Urban reconversion. From mall to university center
- Meanwhile. Recover inactive commercial markets for community uses
- Book. The principles of green urbanism. Transforming the city for sustainability
- Detroit, photographic attraction and urban policy laboratory
- The health of shopping centers: what will remain after the crisis?
- Hardware and software, a country full of empty highways
- Zombie houses and urban voids
- Why eco-cities will not be the solution
- More about the crisis and the transformation of cities
- Crisis, depopulation and half-built cities
- The near future of urban peripheries in the face of the crisis
- Obama. Demolition man and shrinking cities