Environmental Urban Morphology: A Multidisciplinary Methodology for the Analysis of Public Spaces in Dense Urban Fabrics

Marco Maretto*, Barbara Gherri, D. Maiullari, Chiara Vernizzi, Greta Pitanti, Chiara Finizza, Alice Monacelli

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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A city is an organism made of social, economic, cultural, and environmental fabrics, the interactions of which determine the form and functioning of city life. Different disciplines are then involved in analyzing the complex processes of the 21st-century city. The aim of this study was to explore the use of an analytical method that can act as a catalyst for the main players involved in the environmental urban morphology (EUM). This multidisciplinary methodology focuses on the study of public space in dense urban fabrics as a key context for understanding a city. Operationally, the work shows the potential of integrating morphological analysis, pedestrian flow analysis, and environmental analysis and applying them in dense and compact urban fabrics. The first of these analyses methods was carried out using urban survey tools and the geographic information system (GIS) in order to detect the physical forms of the city and develop a number of morphological maps. The second, using the global positioning system (GPS) and on-site detectors, maps pedestrian movement within public spaces. The latter mainly focuses on the microclimatic analysis of public spaces and outdoor comfort, carried out using environmental software such as ENVI-met (4.4 version). The ultimate goal of this study was to achieve the definition of a dynamic, multidisciplinary, and multilayer methodology for the analysis of dense urban fabrics which we believe could be very useful for addressing the regenerative processes of the contemporary city.
Original languageEnglish
Article number16493
Number of pages18
Issue number23
Publication statusPublished - 2023


  • public open spaces
  • urban morphology
  • pedestrian flows
  • environmental analysis


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