WIT Press

Underground Development: A Path Towards Sustainable Cities


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WIT Press


D. C. Kaliampakos & A. A. Mavrikos


The utilization of underground space has provided viable solutions with regards to many serious problems that modern cities are faced with. Underground development releases valuable space on the surface, improves the environmental quality and preserves the city-scape and the landscape. Lately, interest in underground space utilization in Greece is more intense than ever. This paper presents two characteristic cases from Greece’s experience. Furthermore, important issues such as the public’s considerations and land ownership are discussed. Keywords: underground development, urban planning. 1 Introduction Nowadays, the majority of the population of a given country lives in large urban areas, where the centre of today’s life revolves. This situation begun to take shape during the beginning of the previous century and the trend continues to our days. The concentration of many people and human activities in relatively small surface area created the need to expand in order to fulfil the demands for better living conditions. Cities begun to expand \“horizontally” or \“two dimensionally” and the urban sprawl consumed neighbouring \“green areas”, while free surface space was evidently diminishing. We all experience the repercussions of this model of urban expansion as we bear witness to the degradation of the environmental quality, the deterioration of the living conditions, the scarcity of free space, the high land prices and other urban-related problems. At the same time, infrastructure and the industry demand all the more surface areas and as a result land prices continue to rise.


underground development, urban planning.