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Abstract

The quest for sustainable development and biodiversity protection leads to the creation of a new generation of urban parks where man allows natural plant succession, soil regeneration, and rainwater infiltration. New urban nature parks are also places for the promotion of social contacts and physical activity. They can be regarded as health-affirming places. The common features of urban parks presented in this paper can be seen in modern eco-neighbourhoods in France. Public parks of this new generation are planned for the centres of new eco-neighborhoods. These parks are being constructed in the first stages of development. Similar commonalities have been observed for eco-neighbourhoods around the world. The paper presents three examples of good practices: three new parks of this new generation in the eco-neighbourhoods of Paris.

Abstract

This article presents two examples of contemporary private religious spaces against the background of the small-town architecture of the typical, largely unknown town of Szécsény, Hungary, using projects by the Hungarian architect Csanády Gábor Mátyás, DLA, as an example. It discusses the ideas that defined the adaptive reuse of a former school, located in an existing complex adjacent to a monastery of the Order of St. Francis, which was converted into a social care home, and a chapel in the architect’s own house.

Abstract

The aim of this paper is to present an overview of protected areas in Polish seaside spa towns in order to preserve their nature value while focusing on the spatial order. Analyses were conducted considering the status of works on the Landscape Act concerning the interior of Polish spa towns and advantageous effects of that Act in the town space. This review paper presents protected areas based on the resources of the Central Register of Nature Conservation Forms (Centralny Rejestr Form Ochrony Przyrody CRFOP) available at the website of the General Directorate for Environmental Protection (Generalna Dyrekcja Ochrony Środowiska GDOŚ), which data may find multiple uses. The material for analyses is related to all the six Polish seaside spa towns (as for 01.2020). Polish seaside spa towns have many common natural characteristics. All of the six towns are located on the Baltic Sea, have sandy beaches and dunes and they are situated in the vicinity of protected areas. Frequently a green belt, typically a pine forest, separates the seaside zone from the town. Despite its very long seaside line Poland in 2019 has only six seaside spa towns (Kołobrzeg, Świnoujście, Sopot, Kamień Pomorski, Ustka, Dąbki).

Abstract

This paper presents a proposal for updating and expanding the teaching of technical university students concerning the subject of roofs. Through the analysis of Polish textbooks and teaching studies, a lack of information on retractable roofs was identified. As a consequence, a lecture was prepared to fill this gap and presented to students of the Faculty of Civil Engineering and to teaching staff of the Silesian University of Technology. The main components of the lecture are presented in this article. Furthermore, a discussion was undertaken to analyse the possibilities of incorporating new content (in the form of supplementary material) into the currently run courses as well as into optional classes such as student workshops and optional facultative courses.

Abstract

One of the modern methods of reducing vibrations of plates and beams is using piezoelectric materials in the form of distributed elements or patches (applied in a passive or an active system). However, for the multimodal response of a structure, there is no possibility to place the actuators in exactly the areas with maximum curvature values for each mode. Additionally, in the case of passive multimodal suppression systems – in which energy is needed to be supplied to the system – there is the necessity to create a complicated electrical circuit. The particular electrical shunts of the circuit are tuned to the specific vibration forms which require damping. The main objective of this article is to show the possibility of creating a multimodal vibration suppression system with typical resonant shunts and proposed second slightly modified.

Abstract

The proposed self-adjusting mechanism consists of a carousel rotor with a vertical axis consisting of two kinematically connected flat blades. The torque of this rotor can change the position of the directing unit and additionally the position of the main propeller in order to direct the wind stream or save the main rotor when the wind is too strong. The theory, principles of operation, and the properties of the self-adjusting system were illustrated by formulas and graphs. Based on research conducted in a boundary layer wind tunnel, the values of the aerodynamic coefficients of the flat blades were determined, and then the power and propeller torque of the rotor were found as a function of the angle of wind attack. A computational procedure provides kinematical and force relations as well as the resulting torque diagrams of the rotor. An example of the use and the design structure of a self-adjusting unit in the case of a horizontal axis wind turbine is presented.

Abstract

Accessing finances for housing has been a major problem for people on low-incomes and this has been weighing heavily on them as they try to access housing. Financial institutions in the city of Bulawayo are failing to come up with financial products that suit low-income clients. There are an estimated 110000 low-income residents among the estimated 250000 residents of Cowdray Park low-density residential area in Bulawayo. This has also affected their right to the city as they have been excluded from the housing delivery system. There are so many initiatives that have been available to those on a low-income but these initiatives have rarely benefited the urban poor of the city. This research has examined how the financial services that exist in the housing sector have been crafted to benefit the urban poor. The research employed a mixed methods approach to the inquiry, where a questionnaire was the main quantitative method used and in-depth interviews and observations were the qualitative methods that complemented it. The research found that there are various financial services that are available in Zimbabwe, but these financial facilities rarely help the urban poor. The majority of the poor have been managing without any financial support and this has been stalling their access to housing. Most housing products are fashioned along neo-liberal economic principles that have very little to offer the urban poor. This has therefore denied the urban poor in the city of Bulawayo their right to the city. Most cities in Zimbabwe are struggling to satisfy their housing demand as they have long housing waiting lists. Research therefore recommends the crafting of financial facilities that are best targeted on the urban poor, and are specially adapted to their financial conditions.

Abstract

Slum redevelopment is occurring at a rapid pace in many African cities. This paper examines the urban development of contemporary Luanda, the capital of Angola. Central to this examination is an analysis of the city’s slums according to Foucault’s concept of governmentality. The focus is on the chaotic urban development that has resulted from the civil war and on the effects of poverty and gentrification in many of Luanda’s slums. The policy of violence towards slum population adopted by the municipality appears to define a technology of domination, the subjection of the individual to the formation of the state. However, with the high earnings obtained from oil production, the country clearly has the resources needed to fund investments in electricity and utility systems. The continuing persistence of slums and a housing policy based on neglect signifies a form of governmentality, adopted as a means of government coercion and a way of dominating the poor population. The paper closes with a set of policy implications for action.