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GIS: Urban mining Almere

Copper in cables, aluminum in window frames, gold in telephones: there’s a wealth of metals to be found in the built environment. But what will it take to mine the city? Is it worthwhile?

Urban mining is a practical application of the Circular Economy concept, by considering the city as a mine for potential extraction of resources (metals) that are currently stocked in buildings.

In this case study of Almere, the metal content of buildings was estimated using ArcGIS software.

Estimated steel content in residential, commercial and industrial buildings
Estimated copper content in residential buildings
Estimated economic value of steel and copper in residential, commercial and industrial buildings
Estimated economic value of steel and copper in residential, commercial and industrial buildings, per city district

The following flowchart presents the workflow and the assumptions and calculations that were made.

Full research report

Project details

Type
University research project
Leiden University, Netherlands

Date
February – March 2017

Location
Almere, Netherlands