Swimming Pools: A Landmark of Sprawl. Mediterranean Urbanity, Landscape Architecture and Social Issues

Luca Salvati, Ph.D.
University of Rome La Sapienza

Ilaria Zambon, Ph.D.
University of Tuscia, Italy

Series: Urban Development and Infrastructure
BISAC: SOC026030



Volume 10

Issue 1

Volume 2

Volume 3

Special issue: Resilience in breaking the cycle of children’s environmental health disparities
Edited by I Leslie Rubin, Robert J Geller, Abby Mutic, Benjamin A Gitterman, Nathan Mutic, Wayne Garfinkel, Claire D Coles, Kurt Martinuzzi, and Joav Merrick


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Urban sprawl has radically transformed Southern European landscapes. Nowadays, sprawl is a major benefiting factor in the daily lives of thousands of people and its mismanagement reflects relevant social and economic issues. For these reasons, a specific effort should be made to identify contributing factors and set up suitable indicators informing strategies of sustainable urban growth. This book proposes an original interpretation of contemporary metropolitan contexts, candidating residential swimming pools as a landmark of urban sprawl.

Detached houses, backyard pools and private gardens reflect a landscape with peculiar social, political and cultural dynamics. Comparing the spatial distribution of swimming pools with appropriate background indicators may explain how sprawl has occurred in three representative cities of Southern Europe (Barcelona, Rome and Athens), proposing future strategies for urban sustainability. The authors’ study verifies whether or not swimming pools are a useful tool for monitoring sprawl pattern and processes, clarifying the major challenges that society faces in managing peri-urban land.


Chapter 1. The Long Way of Sprawl

Chapter 2. Getting Insight on Mediterranean Urbanity

Chapter 3. Interpreting Sprawling Cities

Chapter 4. A Diachronic Analysis of Urban Sprawl

Chapter 5. The Uneven Expansion of Contemporary Cities

Keywords: Swimming pools, Sprawl, Mediterranean Europe, Urban Planning

Audience: Professional people e.g. researchers, academic persons, students

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