THE CITY OF IZHEVSK TO PILOT NOVAYA’s INFRASTRUCTURE ACCESSIBILITY TOOL

Novaya has created an Infrastructure Accessibility Tool (IAT)© to help cities evaluate the sufficiency and convenience of city infrastructure and yield a transparent and data-driven approach to urban development. To run IAT© we digitise and process data on the city’s housing, social, commercial and transportation infrastructure, and utilities.

The city of Izhevsk will be the first city to pilot the tool as part of its 2030 Spatial Strategy.

 

The city of Izhevsk, Russia, with a total population of 649,500 people, has suffered from the dramatic impact of rapid urban sprawl. In recent years, the built-up area has grown by more than 12.5%, with even more noticeable growth in the suburban region.

 

Existing planning documents were regularly updated retrospectively to reflect planning permissions granted, subverting the planning process overall. This resulted in new housing districts built on former agricultural land without essential social infrastructure.

 

By 2017, local and regional governments faced significant reputational damage due to a lack of transparency in the decision-making process and the significant shortage of local social infrastructure. 

 

Izhevsk has very low housing availability – 21.5 sq.m./per person – the lowest in the Volga region and lower than the Russian average of 23.4 sq.m./per person. 2025 housing targets for Izhevsk aim for 3,005 mln. sq.m. of new housing to be built. Meanwhile, the current housing stock is only 13,570 mln sq.m. meaning the city is about to grow by more than 20% in less than five years.

 

There is a significant shortage of local social infrastructure in Izhevsk. The daycare shortage (calculated according to the local Planning Policy Guidelines) amounts to 9,400 places in Izhevsk and 1,060 in the suburban area. The total shortage of places in schools reaches 15,343. In many cases, new housing was not followed by new social infrastructure. This created a spatial imbalance with an overprovision of social infrastructure in the city centre and a lack of it in the periphery.

 

To resolve these challenges we used IAT© as the backbone for developing, monitoring and updating the city’s 2030 Spatial Strategy. This allowed us to:

 

  • Identify imbalances in the urban mix by quantifying current and future shortages of social infrastructure and utilities; 
  • Communicate efficiently with real estate developers and local citizens using an identical set of information in simple visual form;
  • Set indicative floor area targets for different uses and model city-wide impact;
  • Use the tool as a universal medium for further reviews of planning documents and monitoring of their implementation. 

 

The IAT© measures the provision of infrastructure — from social to recreational — in different parts of the city. The tool helps residents and businesses participate in city planning via an interface equipped with data. Integration of IAT© with regional and municipal GISs enables a transition from opaque decision-making to an open process with quantifiable results. To learn more about  IAT© see our demo here.