Hydro-scape: floating urban water spaces

Tool for design of floating public spaces

GUI description and functionality of the tool’s features

Urban water spaces, lakes and rivers have an impact on the image of the city and have played a key role in the social and economic development of cities throughout the centuries. As economic, social and cultural values of an urban land is immensely increasing, a high demand for new public urban spaces leads to reclaiming of water areas within the cities. Such urban and architectural interventions within water environments attract citizens and visitors to occupy these places and interact with them, bringing new cultural and social values which enhance a particular urban identity. As different social groups and activities, as well as considerations addressing climate change and increasing sustainability and resilience place different demands on design and use, the redevelopment of urban waterfronts provides an ideal test bed for new concepts of citizen engagement and adaptive and responsive urban developments.

Architectural and urban planning is nowadays a highly specialised process, which does not actively engage the users of these spaces in the design process and in consequence to some extent neglects their needs, preferences, and also does not take advantage of their local and living knowledge of a place, which could benefit the design of more diverse, adapted and adaptive environments.

Design Task

  • Create your own floating urban scenarios, consisting of public spaces, urban gardens, public bridges or leisure platforms following your own imagination and needs.
  • Each activity is represented by a color-coded module, which is joined together with other modules. You can create also your own modules by various sizes and shapes by means of graphical user interface on the side of the page.
  • Modify various parameters, such as attraction speed by changing engine's time scale, gravity forces or a friction parameter. This will allow you to control the behaviour of floating modules more appropriately.
  • Once you created your own scenario, download it as an image, examine it in a separate static picture (below part of the webpage) or submit it using the "submit” button.


Here are visualizations and two possible scenarios

Examples of citizens’ initial idea proposals for the floating public spaces as sketches. The modules can be assembled into various configurations.
Each module serves for different public activities: urban garden, leisure platform, public space and connections.