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Spectacular, realisable and‘everyday’: Exploring the particularities of sustainableplanning in Malmo
Department of Human Geography, Lund University.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-6468-2675
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute for Housing and Urban Research.
2017 (English)In: City, ISSN 1360-4813, E-ISSN 1470-3629, Vol. 21, no 3-4, p. 253-270Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

‘Sustainability’, often presented through an ecological–economic–social triad, is today one of spatial planning’s absolute key concepts (and key priorities). But it is also a highly contested concept, whose meaning is often considered evasive or vague. In this paper, we try to counterweigh such evasiveness by putting emphasis on the material landscape produced within a project that is frequently depicted as a pinnacle of sustainable planning: the Western Harbour in Malmö, Sweden. Regardless of how vague discursive definitions of sustainability are, we argue that there is a sense in which planning projects such as this one help stabilise the meaning of the concept. They become material manifestations of particular takes on sustainability. Through examining what has emerged as former shipyards and factory grounds have since 2001 been transformed within the Western Harbour, we develop a heuristic triad that highlights what is presented as sustainability therein. We argue that through the Western Harbour’s development, sustainable planning becomes ‘spectacular’ through a focus on building sustainably in a way that also attracts public attention. It becomes regarded as ‘realisable’ in that it should be achievable within current political and political–economic structures. And sustainable planning becomes about the ‘everyday’ in that technological solutions for greening inhabitants’ everyday lives are developed in a way that emphasises the local scale.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. Vol. 21, no 3-4, p. 253-270
Keywords [en]
urban planning, sustainability, discourse, place-marketing, material landscapes
National Category
Social and Economic Geography
Research subject
Social and Economic Geography
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-401450DOI: 10.1080/13604813.2017.1325186OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-401450DiVA, id: diva2:1383411
Available from: 2020-01-08 Created: 2020-01-08 Last updated: 2020-01-08

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
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  • nn-NB
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