Shaping New Perspectives: Enhancing Urban Planning by Modelling in Lyon

Cities are complex systems that need to be understood comprehensively in order to preserve and improve their inhabitants’ quality of life. Cross-sectoral activities and services, such as the provision of transport, energy and water infrastructure, as well as access to education and health care, have to be considered.

In the project Modélisation Urbaine Gerland (MUG), the Métropole de Lyon is engaging in new planning methods and is eager to develop innovative tools thanks to a partnership that brings together competences in urban planning (“Agence d‘Urbanisme de la Métropole de Lyon”), industrial research and infrastructure planning (EDF’s R&D, Veolia Research and Innovation together with Métropole de Lyon’s relevant departments), as well as two start-ups in Lyon focusing on complex systems (The CoSMo Company), and an interactive platform, together with models on land use and population dynamics (ForCity). The district of Gerland in Lyon is an ideal laboratory in view of its ongoing urban transformation.

EIFER is contributing to the project as a subcontractor of EDF’s R&D. In this function, EIFER is developing models on residential refurbishment, energy poverty, district heating, e-charging infrastructure and PV potential. EIFER further provides input to the project in the domain of the urban heat island effect and an analysis of potential risks for the vulnerable population.

The four main objectives of this project are:

- accompanying the process of urban and social transition in the urban district of Gerland
- merging visionary urban planning with computerised modelling
- linking different domains in urban planning in a holistic and integrated manner
- providing support for decision-making for the long-term development of the district of Gerland

The project intends to provide the Métropole de Lyon with an interactive planning platform as a tool providing support for decision-making. This is made possible by the diverse competences of the project consortium, which allows urban challenges to be comprehensively integrated into computerised models, creating a tool that makes interrelations and interactions visible. Furthermore, the planning platform enables the planning authority of Lyon to develop different futures, to engage in interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary exchange and helps to break down the traditional silo approach to urban planning. This will be achieved via simulation and visualisation of interdependencies.

The project was launched in July 2014 and will be completed by December 2017. MUG is a public funded project financed in the EcoCité framework by Caisse des Dépôts and Consignations. During the project duration the Métropole de Lyon, EIFER and EDF organise conferences which inform on topics linked to the project MUG.

It is organised in 3 phases:

2014-2015: Definition of topics and indicators
2015-2016: Technical specifications, modelling and model coupling
2016-2017: Tests and results

Visit us online for more information about the project.

Contact EIFER: Monika Heyder
Contact EDF: Fabrice Casciani