The comprehensive agent-based simulation of the urban dynamics
University of Florence
Last modified: July 3, 2007
In the simulation of the urban dynamics, usually subsystems are simulated such as traffic, land rent, and retail location, despite the integrated character of the whole urban system. Comprehensive models have been developed during the 60s and 70s which were based on a macro-approach. The problem here addressed concern the application of a micro, agent-based approach to the comprehensive simulation of the urban dynamics.
A model, CityDev, is proposed which runs on a 3-D spatial pattern and it is based on agents, goods and markets. Each agent (family, industrial firm, commercial firm, service firm, or developer) produces goods (labor, buildings, consumption goods) by using other goods and exchanges the goods in the markets. Each agent needs a building where to live or work, hence the urban fabric is produced and transformed as the result of the co-evolution of the economic and spatial systems.
The model is applied to Florence (Italy). The evolution of the economic-spatial system of the city and of the little surrounding towns is simulated beginning from a central seed, and the results after 300 steps are compared with the current situation.
In conclusion the dynamics of sub-systems is unified in the agents as the centers of the actions producing a city, while the comprehensive simulation allows to evaluate the cause-effect relations crossing the border of the sub-systems.