FAST: Framework for Assessing Sustainability over Time

Sicilia, Emily A
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University of Guelph

Guidance from theory for a more holistic approach to achieving greater sustainability in urban landscapes has yet to be derived for many settings. Often extensions of their surrounding cities, campuses provide a finer scale for experimental design. This study developed a quantitative assessment to guide the transformation of campus landscapes into more instructive demonstrations of social and ecological concern. A Framework for Assessing Sustainability over Time (FAST) was created through an integrative research review and synthesis of validated models: Normalized Difference Vegetation Index, Local Climate Zones, and Impervious Cover Model, and measurable indicators: patch size and connectivity. This framework was applied to the University of Guelph to test the relative quality of landscape components, where principles prescribed by urban ecology were identified and operationalized to improve the environmental sustainability of the campus design. The framework will inform ecological sensitivity in campus and urban design that can influence user awareness.

campus, urban ecology, resilience, remote sensing