Luis De Garrido Eco-Urbanism
Luis de Garrido is set on designing a global system of cities able to sustain a necessary ecological paradigm of social and economic development.
Therefore, first, Luis De Garrido believes that the current global system of cities needs to be restructured in an environmentally friendly way, taking into account the following general parameters:
- Reverse the current global trend of large city growth in less developed countries.
- Allow and encourage the growth of smaller cities, according to their distance from the central locations, and that the population is distributed more evenly throughout the territory.
- The distribution of the population centers of the new system of cities should be performed on a human scale, with a quasi-hexagonal structure, similar to the network of medieval and commercial cities, based on the weekly open-air market, based on central place theory.
- Large cities should be divided into several villages (on the appropriate human scale) separated by means of peripheral green areas, and become a federation of self-municipalities.
- The towns must have the highest possible level of self-sufficiency in energy, water and food, in order to avoid excessive dependence on other central places, and to minimize commuting and transport of goods.
- The maximum size of all villages (in order to avoid the diseconomies of scale) should be between 50,000 and 300,000, depending on their economic and cultural conditions, and depending on the terrain.
Secondly, to ensure that the global system of cities is restructured with the greatest ecological level, Luis De Garrido suggests that different urban plans of the different towns have the following objectives:
- Ensure proper density of each self-contained unit
- Ensure the appropriate mix of uses in each self-contained unit
- Design the layout of road in the direction along the East-West and North-South
- Avoid earthworks, or minimize appropriately
- Avoid at all costs substantially changing the previously existing natural ecosystem
- Encourage walking and cycling within each self-contained unit
- Impeding the use of private vehicles and promote public transport
- Proper design of public spaces to stimulate the cordial relationship among neighbors
- Reduce paving
- Ensure self-sufficiency in energy of each self-contained unit
- Ensure self-sufficiency in water of each self-contained unit
- Ensuring food self-sufficiency of each self-contained unit
Finally, to ensure the highest possible ecological level of all towns, Luis De Garrido suggests that different urban planning is added in their ordinances (whose objective is to regulate construction and zoning):
- Adopt a southern orientation for all buildings
- Adjust the form of the buildings
- Limit the most appropriate variety of architectural typological
- Regulate the windowed surfaces (minimum area and maximum area)
- Adjust the percentage of glazed surfaces according to orientation
- Regulate the type of solar protections according to orientation
- Determine the distance between buildings, to promote shading among each other
- Check the type of external paving
- Encourage the increased mass of the buildings
- Determine the most suitable tree and plant species
- Promote the design of green roofs and energy-efficiency
- Adopt systems of protection and conservation of the previously existing ecosystem
- Use green materials and local materials
- Reuse of waste in the construction of the building itself
- Use prefabricated industrial materials in buildings
- Incorporate energy generating devices
- Incorporate solar hot water generating devices
- Incorporate systems for treatment and reuse of rainwater
- Incorporate systems for treatment and reuse of gray water
- Incorporate systems for treatment and reuse of sewage
Luis De Garrido, in order to realize their ideas, has applied the above parameters in a research project called “Catalonia 2200” which aims to design a new system of cities in Catalonia, and restructure the city Barcelona, to become a federation of self-sufficient urban centers.
Similarly, in their professional activity and taking into account these parameters, Luis De Garrido has designed several ecological and self-sufficient cities, and has made several urban plans for several cities.