Section 37
Chapter 36,440

Multi-criteria vulnerability analysis to earthquake hazard of Bucharest, Romania

Iuliana Arma?

Natural Hazards 63(2): 1129-1156


ISSN/ISBN: 0921-030X
DOI: 10.1007/s11069-012-0209-2
Accession: 036439566

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The expansive infrastructure, along with the high population density, makes cities highly vulnerable to the severe impacts of natural hazards. In the context of an explosive increase in value of the damage caused by natural disasters, the need for evaluating and visualizing the vulnerability of urban areas becomes a necessity in helping practitioners and stakeholders in their decision-making processes. The paper presented is a piece of exploratory research. The overall aim is to develop a spatial vulnerability approach to address earthquake risk, using a semi-quantitative model. The model uses the analytical framework of a spatial GIS-based multi-criteria analysis. For this approach, we have chosen Bucharest, the capital city of Romania, based on its high vulnerability to earthquakes due to a rapid urban growth and the advanced state of decay of the buildings (most of the building stock were built between 194 and 1977). The spatial result reveals a circular pattern, pinpointing as hot spots the Bucharest historic centre (located on a meadow and river terrace, and with aged building stock) and peripheral areas (isolated from the emergency centers and defined by precarious social and economic conditions). In a sustainable development perspective, the example of Bucharest shows how spatial patterns shape the vulnerability profile of the city, based on which decision makers could develop proper prediction and mitigation strategies and enhance the resilience of cities against the risks resulting from the earthquake hazard.

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