Next Article in Journal
Evaluating the Accuracy of Gridded Population Estimates in Slums: A Case Study in Nigeria and Kenya
Previous Article in Journal
Parents’ Perceived Neighborhood Safety and Children’s Cognitive Performance: Complexities by Race, Ethnicity, and Cognitive Domain
Previous Article in Special Issue
Resilient Urbanization: A Systematic Review on Urban Discourse in Pakistan
Article

Near-Collapse Buildings and Unsafe Sidewalks as Neglected Urban & Public Health Issue: A Qualitative Study

1
University Research Institute of Maternal and Child Health and Precision Medicine, Goudi, 115 27 Athens, Greece
2
Medical School, University of Athens, Mikras Asias 75, Goudi, 115 27 Athens, Greece
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Jason Corburn, Saroj Jayasinghe and Franz W. Gatzweiler
Received: 6 April 2021 / Revised: 31 May 2021 / Accepted: 4 June 2021 / Published: 7 June 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Healthy City Science: Citizens, Experts and Urban Governance)
Public health and city planning are highly interconnected; however, the nexus between the urban state of buildings and sidewalks and corresponding public and urban health issues is lacking in Greece. In a case study in Athens, Greece, we evaluated unsafe buildings, facades, balconies, and sidewalks during a 15-year follow-up. We manually inspected (a) if the building/location’s condition had worsened and (b) any effective intervention by the state. Of the 400 initially selected buildings, 251 nonoverlapping buildings were analyzed. Overall, ~20% of the buildings posed a subjectively perceived severe risk for collapse, 35% had near-to-fall objects, and 45% had other minor issues. Fifteen years later, ~85% of the buildings were at the same or higher risk of complete or partial fall, and in only 15% had the risk of collapse been reduced or removed by private or public intervention. We detected uneven and dangerous parts of sidewalks hindering walkability and increasing the risk of falling or tipping. Our assessment revealed that Athens’ historical center harbors plausible safety and health risks for pedestrians and dwellers due to entire or partial building collapse and poor-condition sidewalks, which can potentially act as stress factors. Collectively, the issue of near-collapse buildings and risky sidewalks as an urban health determinant appears neglected by municipal authorities in their urban planning priorities; thus, future studies are needed in the field. View Full-Text
Keywords: urban design; unsafe buildings; pedestrian safety; near-collapse buildings; urban health; public policies; Greece urban design; unsafe buildings; pedestrian safety; near-collapse buildings; urban health; public policies; Greece
Show Figures

Figure 1

MDPI and ACS Style

Mentis, A.-F.A.; Papadopulos, J.S. Near-Collapse Buildings and Unsafe Sidewalks as Neglected Urban & Public Health Issue: A Qualitative Study. Urban Sci. 2021, 5, 47. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/urbansci5020047

AMA Style

Mentis A-FA, Papadopulos JS. Near-Collapse Buildings and Unsafe Sidewalks as Neglected Urban & Public Health Issue: A Qualitative Study. Urban Science. 2021; 5(2):47. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/urbansci5020047

Chicago/Turabian Style

Mentis, Alexios-Fotios A., and Jannis S. Papadopulos 2021. "Near-Collapse Buildings and Unsafe Sidewalks as Neglected Urban & Public Health Issue: A Qualitative Study" Urban Science 5, no. 2: 47. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/urbansci5020047

Find Other Styles
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Back to TopTop