WIT Press

Reforging spatial identity for social sustainability


Free (open access)


Volume 12 (2017), Issue 3



Page Range

395 - 405

Paper DOI



WIT Press




Spatial conditions cannot fully determine the quality of social or human life, but are significant factors influencing both the present and the future. The spatial aspect of the city is always accompanied by other aspects, more ephemeral, intangible, yet detectable and socially active. Thus, the condition of social identity is related to the spatial identity used by a particular community.

A small-scale community of about 14,000 people lives within an agglomeration of Poznan in the Rokietnica administrative area. Its very core, once a large farming complex, located at the heart of the town, is almost void in terms of urban structures and continuity of urban tissue. This gap is 12 hectares large and is exactly equidistant from the main existing and significant objects: multipurpose/sports hall, commercial center, the set of local authorities, the church, primary and secondary schools, among others.

Filling this large area is a unique task and to assure social sustainability it cannot be performed otherwise than with social participation. The paper will present the application of spatial planning and urban design efforts implementing multiple stage social participation and the experience from the first, conceptual, programmatic project. Its ultimate goal—new Rokietnica center for citizens and renewed spatial identity


social sustainability, spatial identity, spatial planning, sustainability