Multidisciplinary assessment of the landscape development around the Cluj-Napoca city (Romania)
V Cristea, D Gafta, C Baciu, I Goia, L Dragut, I Coroiu
The increased demand for residential housing will generate the extension of the urban area to the prejudice of surrounding semi-natural landscapes in the next 10-20 years. In order to prevent irreversible damage to the environment due to an uncontrolled enlargement of urban area, our primary focus was on the fragile habitats, which require a special management strategy. In particular, we have assessed: 1) geomorphologic risks; 2) forest landscape structure; 3) landscape aesthetic value; 4) environmental quality by means of bio-indicators; 5) habitats of conservation interest. The dominance of eutrophic plant species and opportunistic birds is mainly induced by overgrazing and garbage accumulation. Many important limitations to the urban area extension are revealed: dominance of friable rocks, susceptibility of rich-clay substrates to landslides, occurrence of the most aesthetic area on the ridges, low proportion of the urban green spots, presence of numerous, scattered habitats of conservation interest. Finally, we argue the usefulness of the multidisciplinary approach in landscape planning and management, and provide some recommendations for a sustainable development of the city.