Towards Sustainable Revitalization: The Public Squares Characteristics - Led the Adaptive Urban Revitalization Mechanisms

Zakariya Osamaa Ibrahim, Sally Fakhri Khalaf Abdullah


The public square is a specifically designed urban space that includes many natural and formative elements that achieve communication among the main axes of the city and facilitate the movement of users through it. The public squares (PSs) in many cities, especially Baghdad, need to be revitalized. The Adaptive Urban Revitalization (AUR) strategy, which focuses on improving the quality of urban spaces for PSs to enhance their location, activity, and purpose, can be used for this revitalization. The result is a new space that is adaptive and convenient with regard to the sustainable revitalization of the contemporary city. The main research problem is how to make PSs attractive places for users. There is an absence of clear knowledge about the mechanisms of the AUR strategy, its relationship to the characteristics of PSs, and its influence on the revitalization process. Considering this problem, the main research goal is to reveal the characteristics of PSs as factors that affect the mechanisms of AUR and the role that these influences have in developing a clear approach to the AUR strategy to make PSs attractive places for users. This can be done by improving their conditions and promoting their use more effectively. To achieve this goal, the research will address improving the quality of urban spaces through the application of the AUR strategy. The focus is on addressing urban problems that have an effect on PSs, obtaining the indicators of AUR, applying them to the selected case studies and testing them mathematically. The results of the research produced a clear approach with regard to utilizing the strategy of AUR in PSs. It examined all mechanisms represented by Urban Response, Urban Accessibility, and Dynamic Activities. The results showed a positive relationship of these mechanisms on the characteristics of PSs.


Doi: 10.28991/CEJ-2023-09-04-015

Full Text: PDF


Adoptive Urban Revitalization; Public Squares; Urban Response; Urban Accessibility; Dynamic Activities.


Zeka, B. (2011). The humanistic meaning of urban squares: the case of Çayyolu urban square project. Master Thesis, Middle East Technical University.

Abdullah, S. F. K., & Al-Alwan, H. A. (2019). Urban Resilience in the Sustainable Urban Regeneration of Historic City Centers. Association of Arab Universities Journal of Engineering Sciences, 26(4), 130–143. doi:10.33261/jaaru.2019.26.4.015.

Tawfeeq Najah, F., Fakhri Khalaf Abdullah, S., & Ameen Abdulkareem, T. (2023). Urban Land Use Changes: Effect of Green Urban Spaces Transformation on Urban Heat Islands in Baghdad. Alexandria Engineering Journal, 66, 555–571. doi:10.1016/j.aej.2022.11.005.

Abbasian, A. (2016). Importance of urban squares as public space in social life: a new design of Fisktorget in Karlskrona City. Master Thesis, Blekinge Institute of Technology, Karlskrona, Sweden.

Hanzl, M. (2013). The meaning of public spaces. Green Design, Materials and Manufacturing Processes, 39-44, Taylor & Francis, London, United Kingdom.

Ma, X., Chau, C. K., & Lai, J. H. K. (2021). Critical factors influencing the comfort evaluation for recreational walking in urban street environments. Cities, 116, 103286. doi:10.1016/j.cities.2021.103286.

Chua, M. H. Y. (2021). Macau Squares: Discerning the Triadic Sign Model of Built-Heritage. Sustainability, 13(13), 7024. doi:10.3390/su13137024.

Lynch, K. (1984). Good city form. MIT Press, Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States.

Memluk, Z., M. (2013). Designing Urban Squares. Advances in Landscape Architecture. Intech Open, London, United Kingdom. doi:10.5772/55826.

Gehl, J. (2013). Cities for people. Island Press, Washington, United States.

Li, S., Blythe, P., Zhang, Y., Edwards, S., Xing, J., Guo, W., ... & Namdeo, A. (2021). Should older people be considered a homogeneous group when interacting with level 3 automated vehicles?. Transportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour, 78, 446-465. doi:10.1016/j.trf.2021.03.004.

Elliott, M. N. (2013). The revitalization of the American downtown: A network of public squares in Richmond, Virginia. Mater Thesis, University of Maryland, College Park, United States.

Whyte, W. H. (2012). City: Rediscovering the center. University of Pennsylvania Press, Philadelphia, United States.

Lindarto, D., & Harisdani, D. (2020). Urban square as a strip development revitalization element (case study: Dr. Mansur street corridor, Medan City). IOP Conference Series: Materials Science and Engineering, 801(1), 012003. doi:10.1088/1757-899x/801/1/012003.

Cevik, G. (2016). The Public Square: Memory and Meaning. Cross Americas: Probing Disglobal Networks-Papers. doi:10.35483/acsa.intl.2016.20.

Adnan Abdulmounaam, S. (2021). The axis of pedestrian movement between traditional and contemporary thought. IOP Conference Series: Earth and Environmental Science, 754(1), 012032. doi:10.1088/1755-1315/754/1/012032.

Ahmed, N. S., & Rasheed, K. G. (2020). The transitions in contemporary urban space. Journal of the planner and development, 25(1).

Jaszczak, A., Pochodyła, E., & Płoszaj-Witkowska, B. (2022). Transformation of Green Areas in Central Squares after Revitalization: Evidence from Cittaslow Towns in Northeast Poland. Land, 11(4). doi:10.3390/land11040470.

Mehan, A. (2016). Investigating the Role of Historical Public Squares on Promotion of Citizens’ Quality of Life. Procedia Engineering, 161, 1768–1773. doi:10.1016/j.proeng.2016.08.774.

Subiza-Pérez, M., Vozmediano, L., & San Juan, C. (2020). Welcome to your plaza: Assessing the restorative potential of urban squares through survey and objective evaluation methods. Cities, 100. doi:10.1016/j.cities.2019.102461.

De Graaf, R. E. (2012). Adaptive urban development: A symbiosis between cities on land and water in the 21st century. Hogeschool Rotterdam, Rotterdam, Netherlands.

McDonald, S., Malys, N., & Maliene, V. (2009). Urban regeneration for sustainable communities: A case study. Technological and Economic Development of Economy, 15(1), 49–59. doi:10.3846/1392-8619.2009.15.49-59.

Javadi, H. (2015). Sustainable Urban Public Squares. European Journal of Sustainable Development, 5(3), 361-370. doi:10.14207/ejsd.2016.v5n3p361.

Hasan, S. K., Hussein, L. T., & Mahdi, H. S. (2022). Analysis of Walking Accessibility of Community Park in Duhok City. Journal of planner and development, 27(2), 68-91.

Ciepiela, A. (2019). Reinstanation the Significance of City Main Public Space - Revitalization of the Main Square in Polaniec. IOP Conference Series: Materials Science and Engineering, 471, 112020. doi:10.1088/1757-899x/471/11/112020.

Abdullah, S. F. K., & Al-Alwan, H. A. (2018). Ecopolis Strategy in the Sustainable Urban Regeneration of Historic City Centers. Journal of University of Babylon for Engineering Sciences, 26(10), 359-380.

Cherfaoui, D., & Djelal, N. (2018). Change in Use and Development of Public Squares Considering Daily Temporalities. Articulo – Revue de Sciences Humaines. doi:10.4000/articulo.3809.

Dounia, K., & Boudjemaa, A. (2022). Batna City from Organized Planning to Distortion (Case Study Biskra Road Axis - Algeria). Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences, 13(1), 77. doi:10.36941/mjss-2022-0008.

Ben Aisha, Z. (2020). Public Spaces in Algeria Between Design and Use, a Case Study of Public Squares in the City of Batna, Algeria, Batna. Available online: (accessed on April 2023).

Giddings, B., Charlton, J., & Horne, M. (2011). Public squares in European city centers. Urban Design International, 16(3), 202–212. doi:10.1057/udi.2011.6.

Ibrahim, H. (2019). Principles of Achieving the Quality of Public Squares According to the Concept of Place Making. Journal of the Egyptian Society of Engineers, 58(2), 174-186. (In Arabic).

Hegazy, I. (2020). The (No-) Public Space. Reviewing the Transformation of Al-Qaed Ibrahim's Urban Image. The Journal of Public Space, 5(1), 177-192. doi:10.32891/jps.v5i1.1257.

Hattab, R. K., & Al Ani, M. Q. A. G. (2020). Innovative Urban Process to Revitalize Urban Spaces. IOP Conference Series: Materials Science and Engineering, 870(1), 012048. doi:10.1088/1757-899x/870/1/012048.

Manehasa, K., & Çoniku, X. (2021). The Use of Public Space as Urban Regeneration Tool: A Case Study in Residential Block “1 Maji” in Tirana, Albania. European Journal of Social Science Education and Research, 8(1), 140. doi:10.26417/989uxl13s.

Kyriazis, A., "Open Space – Open Program: Towards the End of the “Curated City” Researchgate Urban-Rural Sociology-Cities," In in book: Mediterranean Urban Campus for Regeneration at the Dubai 2020 Expo: Urban Open Spaces toward the New Challenges of Adaptively, 1-7.

Dogan, T., Samaranayake, S., & Saraf, N. (2018). Urbano- A New Tool to Promote Mobility-Aware Urban Design, Active Transportation Modeling and Access Analysis for Amenities and Public Transport. (2018). Proceedings of the 2018 Symposium on Simulation for Architecture and Urban Design (SimAUD 2018). doi:10.22360/simaud.2018.simaud.028.

Dogan, T., Yang, Y., Samaranayake, S., & Saraf, N. (2020). Urbano: A Tool to Promote Active Mobility Modeling and Amenity Analysis in Urban Design. Technology Architecture and Design, 4(1), 92–105. doi:10.1080/24751448.2020.1705716.

Cheng, S., Leung, C. K. S., & van Ameijde, J. (2022). Evaluating the Accessibility of Amenities toward Walkable Neighborhoods: an Integrated Method for Testing Alternatives in a Generative Urban Design Process. Proceedings of the 27th Conference on Computer Aided Architectural Design Research in Asia (CAADRIA). doi:10.52842/conf.caadria.2022.1.495.

El Shazly, A. E. (2022). Prospects of room graph at ‘Seqina’ slum in Egypt. Ain Shams Engineering Journal, 13(3), 101594. doi:10.1016/j.asej.2021.09.021.

Benedikt, M. L. (1979). To take hold of space: isovists and isovist fields. Environment and Planning B: Planning and Design, 6(1), 47–65. doi:10.1068/b060047.

Full Text: PDF

DOI: 10.28991/CEJ-2023-09-04-015


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2023 Sally Fakhri Khalaf Abdullah, Zakariya Osamaa Ibrahim

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.