Copenhagen Solutions Lab enters into new project on air pollution


Together with Danish Gehl and the Dutch Bernard van Leer Foundation, Copenhagen Solutions Lab looks further into data on air pollution. The project applies data from air measurements, that Copenhagen Solutions Lab carried out together with Google and Utrecht University, to set up concrete guidelines for urban planning that takes human needs and air pollution into consideration.

Concrete tools for urban planning
The project is based on the idea that the planning and organization of the city affects the ways we live. The goal is to provide practitioners, urban planners and decision makers with tools in the form of fact-based design codes for healthy urban environments that at the same time works as an invitation to outdoor and social activities. This effort augments data on hyperlocal air quality measurements from the Airview collaboration between Google and the City of Copenhagen with public life data from Gehl.

In the project Gehl will develop concrete design propositions to reduce pollution and invite people to hang out in less polluted areas, as well as three tools that can be used to integrate considerations of air pollution into the design of urban spaces: A process tool, a implementation tool, and a strategic tool.

Children and urban spaces
The project stretches over several phases. Bernard van Leer Foundation has financed the first phase of the project which explores how urban spaces can invite children and parents to stay places in the city with low levels of air pollution. A central element in this connection is to observe and analyze how children move around in the city and relate it to measurements of air quality that Google provides. Afterwards we will use these insights to design ways to reduce pollution in the areas where there are a lot of children as well as increase the accessibility to areas with less air pollution.

The further course of the project
Copenhagen Solutions Lab is working on testing the vision and tools of the project through concrete interventions in Copenhagen quarters and carry out impact measurements of both air quality and levels of urban life. The interventions should be holistic by being good for small kids, reduce the effects of bad air quality, reduce pollution, make the streets safer and create places for meeting and hanging out.