ISHTAR Suite: An Advanced Software Tool For The Assessment Of Short And Long Term Measures For Improving The Quality Of Life In The Urban Environment
Free (open access)
A. Agostini, E. Negrenti & M. Lelli
The ISHTAR Project (FP5 – EESD Programme) aim was to build an innovative decision support tool for advanced urban management through the integrated analysis of the various environmental effects of technical and non technical measures. The suite includes both existing and newly developed models, covering the areas of citizens’ behaviour, transport, vehicle safety and emissions of pollutants and noise, pollutants dispersion and noise propagation, exposure to pollutants, noise and accident and related risk assessment, impacts on monument assessment and a tool for the overall analysis. These modules are integrated by a software Manager, a Suite Data Base, a commercial GIS and a user-friendly interface. This integration represents a significant technical achievement. Standard model suites normally include only a few of these models. The suite represents a strong enlargement of the applicability area, since with this kind of ‘multi-impacts’ tool the user is able to analyse in an integrated and ‘coherent’ way the various aspects of ‘global’ urban policies, without having to perform separate studies relying on different input information providing less credible conclusions. Beside the integration, the scientific core value of the ISHTAR Suite is represented by a few crucial modelling developments that can be summarized as: prediction of the effects of citizens’ reaction to postulated measures; improvement of vehicle emission modelling; development of an urban road safety model; a tailed estimate of pollution effects on citizens’ health based on the spatial-temporal analysis of population, noise and pollution maps. The high spatial and temporal flexibility in the use of the Suite maximizes the possibility of application from local short-term actions to widespread long-term policies, thus being of interest for different categories of users. The suite is going to be tested in the seven cities involved in the ISHTAR Project: Athens, Bologna, Brussels, Graz, Grenoble, Paris and Rome.