THE LOSS OF VILLAGES IN ROMANIA AFTER 1990
V. ZOTIC1, DIANA ELENA ALEXANDRU1,LAURA‐MARIA IACOBINIUC1
1 Faculty of Geography, Babeș‐Bolyai University, Centre for Research on Settlements and Urbanism
ABSTRACT. – The Loss of Villages in Romania after 1990. Settlement development is a continuous process significantly influenced by population dynamics. Population decrease through migration and low birth rate has become an issue at European level, and in the case of Romanian rural areas the situation proves even more severe. The aim of our study is to analyse the evolution of rural settlements from emergence to decline based on a seven‐stage development cycle and emphasize on the phenomenon of rural settlement disappearance in Romania after 1990. Results show that even without first‐sight visible or significant effects at national level, the number of rural settlements that have disappeared is continuously increasing, therefore becoming an issue for the development of rural areas. Particularities of the current condition of the built‐up area of each of the analysed villages revealed various levels of destruction from incipient decline (whole built‐up area) to total collapse (very few remains of the built‐up area, and even incorporated in the natural environment). We thus create a typology of disintegrated villages, which are currently found at national level and we reveal their administrative and geographical distribution. We conclude that settlement evolution and the risk of their disappearance should be on the shortlist of priorities of the national policies, strategies and projects designed for the development and planning of rural areas.
Keywords: settlement dissapearance, depopulation, evolution stages, typology of dissapeared villages, built‐up area, functional transformation, functionality and decline of human settlement