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2023 | Buch

Making Green Cities

Concepts, Challenges and Practice

herausgegeben von: Jürgen Breuste, Martina Artmann, Cristian Ioja, Salman Qureshi

Verlag: Springer International Publishing

Buchreihe : Cities and Nature


Über dieses Buch

This book shows what role nature can play in a city and how this can make it a better place for people to live. People, planners, designers and politicians are working towards the development of green cities. Some cities are already promoted as green cities, while others are on their way to become one. But their goals are often unclear and can include different facets.

Presenting contributions from world leading researchers in the field of urban ecology, the editors provide an interdisciplinary overview of best practices and challenges in creating green cities. They show examples of how to build up these cities from bits and pieces to districts and urban extensions. Each example concludes with a summary of the collected knowledge, the learning points and how this can be used in other places. The best practices are collected from around the world – Europe, America and Asia. Contributions cover a wide range of biophysical and cultural backgrounds within these three continents, including the Central, Southern and Eastern European region, as well as Latin and North America. The new dynamic urban development of Asia is illustrated by case studies from China and the Indian subcontinent.

The reader will learn which role nature can play in green cities and what the basic requirements are in terms of culture, pre-existing nature conditions, existing urban surroundings, history, design and planning.



The Concepts—Green City, Urban Nature, Benefits

The Green City: General Concept

The GreenGreen City is a city that is “in balance with nature”, where all forms of nature—from living organisms to their habitatsHabitat—are highly significant components of the urban form and part of a greenGreen infrastructure. In a GreenGreen City, all forms of nature are respected, maintained and extended for the benefitBenefit of city residents. Urban natureUrban nature is seen as an ideal provider of services and a key concept for city development. Almost all types of urban spaces are host to urbanUrban nature nature—either random (“wild”) or introduced by human decisions (e.g. treesTrees, plantations). These areas are either actively used (e.g. meadows, grazeland, parks, gardensGarden, urban forestsForest, etc.) or are abandoned from their previous use (e.g. brownfields or certain wetlandsWetland and forestsForest). Urban greenGreen infrastructure can be understood as a network of all urban natural elements—either close to nature or designed greenGreen space can be a planningPlanning relevant category. The concept of urban greenGreen infrastructure is thus exemplary for strategic and integrated planningPlanning, protectionProtection, development and managementManagement of urban natureUrban nature. This requires city-wide, district-based and object-based spatial concepts.

Jürgen Breuste
The Urban Nature Concept—of What Urban Green Consists of

Urban natureUrban nature is notably diverse and species rich. This is partially due to the particular ecological conditions provided by the urban environment. Due to the broad spectrum of human activity, the urban environment offers a range of habitatsHabitat for different species. The “four natures approach” is a simple method for presenting urban natureUrban nature in a clear and concise manner. It focuses on the particular features of urban natureUrban nature (fauna, flora and vegetationVegetation) and distinguishes between four different “types of nature” based on the degree of anthropomorphic influence that the landscapeLandscape has experienced. Urban parks, woodlands, forestsForest, gardensGarden, agricultural land, wetlandsWetland and new urban wildernessesUrban wilderness contribute to urban natureUrban nature. Each type of nature provides specific urban ecosystem servicesEcosystem services as benefitsBenefit for urban residents. These urban natureUrban nature types have specific structure, designDesign, managementManagement, utilization forms, locations and embedding into urban forms. Urban forestForest refers to the entirety of urban treeTrees stock, irrespective of ownership and is considered a resource and provider of ecosystem servicesEcosystem services benefitting the city residents. It includes woods and woodlands as well as all treesTrees on both public and private land (street treesTrees, treesTrees in parks, private gardensGarden, cemeteriesCemetery, brown fields, orchards).

Jürgen Breuste
The Benefit Concept—How People Can Benefit from Urban Nature

“Urban ecosystem services”Ecosystem services refers to benefitsBenefit for city residents provided by urban natureUrban nature. They are based on ecological functions that offer a direct or indirect benefitBenefit for human well-being. They are components of nature, directly enjoyed, consumed or used by urban residents. The concept of urban ecosystem servicesEcosystem services aims to analyse, measure and assess the usefulness of urban natureUrban nature for city residents and provides a foundation for urban development and planningPlanning. Studies list the most important services in more detail under the following: (1) urban natureUrban nature supports good living conditions; (2) urban natureUrban nature improves healthHealth; (3) experiencing and learning about nature in the city; (4) urban natureUrban nature provides services; (5) urban natureUrban nature is a location factor. The chapter explains which urban ecosystems provide which ecosystem servicesEcosystem services and how these can be measured, assessed, monitored and planned. UrbanUrban biodiversity biodiversityBiodiversity is not merely the result of natural processes, but also that of conscious and unconscious shaping by humans. This means a paradigm shift regarding the traditional ideas of nature conservationNature conservation that focus on preserving pristine habitatsHabitat and exclusively on indigenous species. UrbanUrban biodiversity biodiversityBiodiversity is often the only biodiversityBiodiversity that many people directly experience. Experiencing urbanUrban biodiversity biodiversityBiodiversity will be the key to halt the loss of global biodiversityBiodiversity.

Jürgen Breuste

Urban Agriculture—More Than Food Production

Urban Agriculture—More Than Food Production

Urban agricultureUrban agriculture describes the growing of plants and animals in and around cities, and it involves activities such as production, processing, delivery and marketing of agricultural products. Urban fabrics can be composed of manifold urban and peri-urban agricultureUrban agriculture depending on spatiality (e.g. rooftop gardensGarden, indoor farmingFarming), the actors involved (e.g. family farms, communityCommunity supported agriculture), and the organizational perspective (e.g. market orientation including urbanUrban farming farmingFarming or subsistence activities such as urban gardening)Urban gardening. Part II aims to contribute to an increased understanding about the impacts and framework conditions for the implementation of urban agricultureUrban agriculture taking into account various types of urban food productionFood production, such as allotmentGarden gardensAllotment garden (Breuste and Artmann), communityCommunity gardensGarden (Liu), communityCommunity supported agriculture (La Rosa), homeHome garden gardensGarden (Dissanayake and Dilini) and the edible cityEdible city concept (Artmann and Reffel). Thereby, the case studies used cover a wide range of geographical backgrounds from the Global South and North, such as Pakistan (Waseem and Breuste), Sri Lanka (Dissanayake and Dilini), China (Liu), Spain (Breuste and Hufnagl), Italy (La Rosa), Austria (Breuste and Artmann) and Germany (Artmann and Reffel). Part II aims at the development of a comprehensive understanding of urban agricultureUrban agriculture and the challenges and changes of food productionFood production in cities.

Martina Artmann, Jürgen Breuste
Allotment Gardens Contribute to Urban Ecosystem Service: Case Study Salzburg, Austria

AllotmentGarden gardensAllotment garden are a vital feature in the urban landscapeLandscape. They provide a range of ecosystem servicesEcosystem services (ES) since they combine utility, social meaning, and beauty. AllotmentGarden gardensAllotment garden have been deeply embedded in European urban development for almost two hundred years. In many European countries, there is a great and rising interest in allotment gardening in traditional and new forms. AllotmentGarden gardensAllotment garden are often not well recognized as a significant part of urban greenGreen in planningPlanning. Investigations into the ES they provide will help integrate them better in urbanUrban planning planningPlanning. This investigation examines in which way urban allotmentGarden gardensAllotment garden contribute to ES in a case study in SalzburgSalzburg, Austria. In this study, 156 allotment gardeners in four allotment associations were surveyed on the role allotmentGarden gardensAllotment garden play in recreationRecreation, food productionFood production, nature experienceNature experience (learning and teaching about nature), ecological gardening, and environmental behavior. The results show the importance of allotmentGarden gardensAllotment garden in recreationRecreation and nature experienceNature experience, while traditional food productionFood production is declining. There is an increasing interest in ecological gardening and general environmental awareness among allotment gardeners.

Jürgen Breuste, Martina Artmann
Community Garden Practices in High-Density High-Rise Urban Areas in Shanghai, China

Chinese metropolises are increasingly facing environmental issues due to the high population density and the rapid expansion of urban construction. As a result, one of the tasks of current urbanUrban planning planningPlanning is to enhance public space quality. One of the ways is motivating communityCommunity residents to participate in designing, maintaining, and managing the land. CommunityCommunity gardensGarden represent a great solution to issues such as environmental pollution and greenGreen spaces decrease. This study aims to research the public and private strategies for creating communityCommunity gardensGarden in high-density areas in ShanghaiShanghai. Two typical cases of communityCommunity gardensGarden are analyzed. Another goal is to provide references for inclusive participation and sustainable developmentSustainable development of communityCommunity gardensGarden. The research shows that closer relationships between residents result in full participation in the planningPlanning process. Different strategies and solutions should be applied in various stages of the planningPlanning process. Despite the differences in the process, the two types of communityCommunity gardensGarden analyzed have the same aim. That is to encourage residents to pay more attention to their surrounding environment and participate actively in public affairs. CommunityCommunity gardensGarden are a great attempt to realize sustainable ecosystems, harmonious neighborhood relations and nature educationEducation activities in densely populated metropolises.

Yuelai Liu
Urban Gardening and Environmental Behavior of Urban Gardeners in Different Garden Forms in Barcelona, Spain

ThisEnvironmental behavior investigation analyzes the current situation of urban communityCommunity gardeningCommunity gardening in the Catalan metropolis BarcelonaBarcelona. CommunityCommunity gardensGarden are places where people can produce food, motivate, learn or teach about nature and integrate themselves socially. The study is based on a quantitative survey method using questionnairesQuestionnaire. For this purpose, 93 test persons in 15 different gardensGarden were randomly selected and interviewed on their intentions, practices, and perspective connected with gardening. The collected data show that recreationRecreation and relaxation in the urban gardensGarden are displacing the perception of self-sufficient food supply as the driving factor for people of lower social status in particular. Knowledge of horticultureHorticulture spreads in these urban “greenGreen oases.” They are “laboratories” in which skills and abilities related to the environment are generated, distributed and applied in practice. The resulting neighborhood integration counteracts socio-urban exclusion. The gardeners can be divided into the groups of retirees and younger, ecologically sustainable people. This categorization is visible in many behavioral aspects related to urban gardeningUrban gardening. In general, there is an urgent need to secure and extend the existing urban gardensGarden because of numerous benefitsBenefit for many urban dwellers.

Jürgen Breuste, Andreas Hufnagl
Investigations on Water Utilization and Water Management Practices in Urban/Peri-Urban Agriculture of Bahawalpur, Pakistan

There is a need for wise water usage globally. This becomes urgent in arid regions with reduced availability of water for farmingFarming. This study investigates agricultural water utilization in urban and peri-urban areas, in Bahawalpur, Pakistan, a city in arid climatic conditions with scarce water sources. The survey was conducted in urban and peri-urban agricultural zones based on different water conditions, groundwater quality, and diversification of canal and sewage water. In total, 480 urban and peri-urban farmersFarmer answered the questions regarding educationEducation, off-farm and farm income sources, crops and livestock and way of water utilization with available water resources. The results show that the majority of farmersFarmer were illiterate or with minimal primary educationEducation. Only traditional practices causing heavy water losses were in use in the study area as a consequence. The most profound constraints in water losses are low income and low educationEducation levels that both hinder farmersFarmer from using water-saving methods. There was also a profound gap between the farmersFarmer and extension staff. If this gap is bridged, more efficient water-saving practices such as drip irrigationIrrigation system can be installed in the area. Lots of water can be spared when participatory approach and government subsidies are applied.

Liaqat Ali Waseem, Jürgen Breuste
Edible City—A New Approach for Upscaling Local Food Supply? The Case of Andernach, Germany

Cities are facing various societal challenges calling for nature-based solutions providing multidimensional benefits to nature and urban residents. Urban and peri-urban agricultureUrban agriculture can be considered one of such solutions contributing to urban resilience, ecosystem servicesEcosystem services and quality of life in cities. In order to upscale urban food supply and its related benefitsBenefit, the concept of edible citiesEdible city (referring to the use of public urban greenGreen spaces for the cost-free provision of food) gains importance in research and urbanUrban planning planningPlanning. This chapter presents the German frontrunner Andernach, one of the first edible citiesEdible city in Germany to help understand the implementation of edible citiesEdible city and their potential benefitsBenefit. Interviews with major initiators of the concept showed that the edible cityEdible city stands out for its multifunctional social, ecological and economic benefitsBenefit addressing various urban challenges such as food security, biodiversityBiodiversity or social cohesion. The edible cityEdible city of Andernach was implemented by the city government without a concept but by practical learning and driven by the demand to re-connect urban residents to nature and food. However, further efforts are needed that edible citiesEdible city are not only “nice to have” but that urban food supply becomes a fixed task for city administration and urban policy.

Martina Artmann, Katharina Sartison
New Forms of Urban Agriculture in Metropolitan Areas: Examples from Italy

In Europe, the dynamics of urban development has been a significant driverDrivers of high consumption of land and agricultural resources, producing complex landscapesLandscape with a highly heterogeneous mix of urban and non-urban uses. Within the mosaic of these non-urbanized areas, cultivated landCultivated land and farmlands are ecosystems able to supply all three major categories of ecosystem services:Ecosystem services provisioning, regulating and cultural servicesCultural services. Apart from the most tangible services (food and fiber), other relevant services are provided by agriculture, such as the maintenance of soil fertility, water regulation, carbon sequestrationCarbon sequestration and cultural servicesCultural services (rural viewscapes, cultural heritage). In this scenario of landscapeLandscape transformations, new forms of urban agricultureUrban agriculture (NFUA) are emerging worldwide as practices that aim at meeting local demand for food, protecting farmlands from urban development and offering cultural opportunities for people living in urban and metropolitan areasMetropolitan area. In this chapter, some exemplar and recent examples of different types of NFUA (urban farms, communityCommunity-supported agriculture, allotmentGarden gardensAllotment garden and agricultural parks) implemented in Italy are presented, as representative and concrete attempts to plan new sustainable planningPlanning scenarios for contemporary metropolitan landscapesLandscape.

Daniele La Rosa
Structure and Processes of Home Gardens in Urban Landscape: The Case of Galle, Kandy, and Jaffna Cities in Sri Lanka

HomeHome garden gardensGarden are a central part of the domestic dwelling. Urban homeHome garden gardensGarden can play a significant role in maintaining ecosystem quality and simultaneously contribute to livelihood needs. Thus, they can be mitigating crucial issues in the urban landscapeLandscape that arise due to human pressure on the environment. In the context of this concern, a better understanding of urban homeHome garden gardensGarden is essential. The study was carried out in three different geographical and socioeconomic regions of Sri Lanka. According to the results, land utilization for gardening is high in Galle and Jaffna, while Kandy shows the lowest record. The increasing area utilized for gardening from the city core to its periphery is common in all three study sites. While Kandy is specific with front gardening, Galle and Jaffna used all surrounding areas for gardening. GardensGarden in Jaffna and Galle are mostly used for food productionFood production while gardensGarden in Kandy are oriented more on the visual appearance. Quality enhancement of urban homeHome garden gardensGarden should be mitigating environmental issues as the greenGreen cover has a unique function on carbon sequestration and increases water detention function and reduces soil erosion and floods.

Lalitha Dissanayake, Mahanthi Mulla Gamage Sathya Dilini

Urban Wildland—Forests, Water, and Wetlands

Urban Wildland—Forests, Waters and Wetlands

Wild landsWild land have to be available and provide a tangible experience in cities, not only for biodiversityBiodiversity protectionProtection, but also for nature experienceNature experience. They need to support innovation with nature in order to address social, economic and environmental challenges. For that, additional knowledge about different features of the forestForest, waters and wetlandsWetland has to be provided considering local experiences, such as physical and socio-economic context, ecosystem structure and functioning, ecosystem servicesEcosystem services and disservices, accessibilityAccessibility, social use, existent and perceived risks, maintenance costs and managing urban protected areas. The different chapters in Part III aim to contribute to increase the understanding of the wild landsWild land in cities, the main topic being related to ecosystem servicesEcosystem services provided by urban forestForest (Antonenko et al.), nature-based solutions applied at city scale (Xu et al.), integration of urban rivers and wetlandsWetland in city managementManagement (Napieralski, Shirazi et al., Faggi and Breuste) or the challenges of exotic species in urban designDesign (Gavrilidis et al.). The case studies cover a wide range of geographical backgrounds, considering experience from South Asia (Shirazi et al.), China (Xu et al.), South America (Faggi and Breuste), North America (Napieralski), Russia (Antonenko et al.) and Southeastern Europe (Gavrilidis et al.).

Cristian Ioja, Salman Qureshi
Urban Forests in Megacities from the Perspective of Ecosystem Services Using the Timiryazevsky Forest Park, Moscow, as a Case Study

This study analyses different links between the urban forestForest as an element of greenGreen infrastructure and greenGreen space production in megacities using an urban forestForest parkForest park in MoscowMoscow as a case study. It illustrates the different functions and meanings of urban forestForest parksForest park and assesses their social, ecological and economic values using the concept of ecosystem servicesEcosystem services. Such evaluation and assessmentAssessment of greenGreen areas highlight the importance of the city greenGreen in coping with high anthropogenic loads and reveal the need to not only maintain but also significantly improve their environmental condition. There is great urgency to develop approaches to ensure sustainable developmentSustainable development in MoscowMoscow based on the concepts of urban greenGreen infrastructure and ecosystem servicesEcosystem services. Although ecosystem servicesEcosystem services provided by forestsForest have been assessed already for Russia at the national level, the identification and evaluation of ecosystem servicesEcosystem services at the city level, especially those provided by urban forestsForest, is a relatively new research field in Russia. Such assessmentsAssessment demonstrate the values that are ‘invisible’ to developers that must be compensated for during housing development. Therefore, recognition of ecological and economic arguments representing the market value of urban forestsForest might help avoid their replacement by more profitable land usesLand use.

Mikhail Antonenko, Diana Dushkova, Tatyana Krasovskaya
Where the Rivers Were: Connecting Indigenous Blue Space to Contemporary City Design

Urban blue spaceUrban blue space refers to any visible water body within a city, including manmade ponds and fountains, as well as natural lakesLakes, wetlandsWetland and rivers. Contemporary efforts have aimed to reconnect blue spaces into city designDesign. This might be best accomplished by mapping indigenous (or relict) hydrologic features and connecting blue space to greenGreen space (city parksCity park). This chapter focuses on six major cities in the USA to evaluate the spatial extent of urban stream burial within the last century, the percent of indigenous stream network that is still a part of the modern stream network and the innate relationship between city parksCity park and urban blue spaceUrban blue space. The results show variation in extent of stream burial since 1900—from no net loss (Minneapolis) to 89% (Detroit). Some cities have maintained larger parts of the relict stream network than others (e.g., Philadelphia has 90% of modern channels classified as relics, while Richmond has only 74%). City parksCity park have played a valuable role as protectors of urban streams. The relationship between urban greenGreen space and blue space is unique, as city parksCity park typically safeguard urban waterUrban waters features that are otherwise vulnerable to removal due to urban development.

Jacob A. Napieralski
Sponge City Practices for Sustainable Water Solutions in China: Reflections from Two Cases

Sponge CitySponge City practices are gaining importance in China for sustainable water solutions. Two cases from Guangzhou City and Xining City were selected and compared to demonstrate various climate zones and different approaches. In Guangzhou, we chose Haizhu WetlandWetland as a representative of the megacity's central wetlandWetland. This example highlights the effectiveness of local greenGreen infrastructure construction by building large-scale wetlandsWetland in the core areas of metropolitan areasMetropolitan area. In Xining, through ecological restoration and Sponge CitySponge City Construction, the problem of soil erosion and geological disasters in the ecologically sensitive areas of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau has been addressed. We applied an identical framework covering macro-, meso- and microscale strategies to both cases through detailed methods resulting in various solutions. When reflecting on both examples, three critical issues arise as challenges for future promotion of Sponge CitySponge City development in China: universal versus local solutions, greenGreen versus gray infrastructure and urban versus regional areas.

Yunfei Xu, Xiaobing Wang, Zhifang Wang
Assessing the Impact of Land Use and Land Cover (LULC) Changes on the Biodiversity of River Ravi, Lahore—Pakistan

Growing cities and increasing built-up area represent a significant threat to natural ecosystemsNatural ecosystems with freshwater ecosystems being among the most endangered ones. Thus, this work aims to evaluate the impact of land useLand use and land coveLand Use and Land Cover (LULC)r change on biodiversityBiodiversity with a focus on freshwater ecosystems. The study was conducted in the vicinity of River Ravi in Lahore District in Pakistan. The comparison of satellite images from years 1990, 2000, 2010 and 2017 using GIS techniques revealed that built-up area tripled in these 27 years. As a result, the share of water bodies and greenGreen areas significantly decreased. BiodiversityBiodiversity change was assessed based on a review of 14 scientific articles dating from 2009 and later. It showed that the River Ravi's biodiversityBiodiversity has been declining at an alarming rate, and it was in a correlation with increasing urbanizationUrbanization rate. Moreover, the condition of river water correlates with the declining biodiversityBiodiversity of the river. Riparian biodiversityBiodiversity and aquatic life are at risk in case this situation continues. An economically strong city could lose one of its assets as a result. Thus, authorities should take immediate actions to control the wastage dumped in the river as well as the industrial water processing.

Safdar Ali Shirazi, Adeel Ahmad, Salman Qureshi
Rehabilitation of Riverbanks in the Metropolitan Area of Buenos Aires: From Research to Action

As a form of urban greenGreen, riverscapesRiverscape are attractive places not only due to the presence of water, as one of the most important aesthetic elements of the landscapeLandscape, but also due to the many native plants and animals occupying the shore. In Latin America, these landscapesLandscape have frequently been severely transformed and polluted, with severe changes in their ecosystem functions. Most stream channels are engineered, replacing natural features with concrete structures. Reduced infiltration can lower riparian groundwater levels and have dramatic effects on ecological processes. There are examples of the involvement of institutions and of civil society to reverse such negative impacts, with different degrees of success. This chapter, taking the Matanza-Riachuelo River (Buenos AiresBuenos Aires province, Argentina) as an example, introduces an exemplary case of how applied research projects from the Academia could serve as inspirational driversDrivers of different ecological rehabilitationRehabilitation actions.

Ana Faggi, Jürgen Breuste
The Influence of Vacant Land Presence on Proliferation of Invasive Alien Plant Species: The Case of Ailanthus altissima (Mill.) Swingle Var. altissima

Urban vacant lands have become increasingly important since their potential to become both a resource and a nuisance. Although they can be transformed into greenGreen infrastructure, they also pose a threat to human safety due to their role as invasive plant species habitatHabitat. In this chapter, we explore the potential effect of the urban land vacancy on the proliferation of Ailanthus altissimaAilanthus altissima (Mill.) Swingle var. altissima. This species is characteristic with allergenic potential, rapid spread, and negative impact on built structures. Thus, it is considered a threat to public healthHealth, urban infrastructures, and archeological sites. We tested the hypothesis that vacant lands in urban areas are hotspots for the rapid spread of Ailanthus altissimaAilanthus altissima. Four sites distributed along a transectTransect from the city center to its periphery serve as our study cases. In situ observations on treeTrees morphology and abundance both within vacant lands and nearby urban land were conducted. Based on these examinations, we presented the spatial patterns along the transectTransect, species abundance on various types of land usesLand use, including vacant lands, public, and private greenGreen spaces. Findings suggest that due to the high adaptability of the species to degraded habitatsHabitat, vacant lands act as hotspots for the species’ dispersal.

Athanasios Alexandru Gavrilidis, Simona R. Grădinaru, Marilena Onete, Jürgen Breuste, Cristian Ioja
Forest Reserves in Urban Landscape: Case of Udawattakele and Dunumadalawa Forest Patches in Kandy, Sri Lanka

Urban forestsForest play a significant role in urban space since their provision of ecosystem servicesEcosystem services. The study focuses on two urban forestsForest in Kandy City, Sri Lanka: Udawattakele and Dunumadalawa. The aims are to identify the current status of the ecosystem servicesEcosystem services and the main challenges in maintaining two urban forestForest patches. We used field surveys, observations, and interviews to identify changes in forestsForest and services. Reduction of forestForest and species changes were studied using Google maps and image analysis. The city's forestForest cover decreased from 64 to 48.9% in 20 years. As a result, the water level in Kandy LakeLakes decreased, followed by the rapid development of the urban heat islandUrban heat island effect, species degradation, and spread of diseases. Unbalanced increment of fauna species negatively influenced food supply level. Urban forestsForest impact local weather by reduction of land surface temperature, air pollution, and air purification. Moreover, examined forestForest patches help to supply purified water to Kandy City. The decrease in urban forestForest patches makes the city more vulnerable. Thus, re-plantation, proper boundary demarcation, and adopting appropriate managementManagement strategies represent current city needs.

Lalitha Dissanayake, Nilukshi Perera

Urban Protected Areas and Urban Biodiversity

Urban Protected Areas and Urban Biodiversity

Protected areas become urban protected areas by their location. The International Union for Nature ConservationNature conservation defines a protected area as: “Clearly defined geographical space, recognized, dedicated, and managed through legal or other effective means, to achieve the long-term conservation of natureNature conservation with its associated ecosystem servicesEcosystem services and cultural values.” Different chapters in part IV aim to contribute to increase the understanding about the general concept of urban protected areas (Iojă), trade-offs and synergies of cultural ecosystemEcosystem services servicesCultural ecosystem services of these areas (Badiu et al.), and perceptions and preferences to urban natureUrban nature (Hayir-Kanat and Breuste). Likewise, chapters are also provided on social aspects of biodiversityBiodiversity (Dushkova et al.), urban land useLand use aspects of biodiversityBiodiversity (Gan and Breuste), and strategies to increase urbanUrban biodiversity biodiversityBiodiversity in urban parks (Borysiak et al.). The case studies cover a wide range of geographical backgrounds, going from Central Europe (Borysiak et al.) to South Eastern Europe (Iojă, Badiu et al.), and including Russia (Dushkova et al.), the biggest European city, i.e., IstanbulIstanbul (Hayir-Kanat and Breuste), and one of the biggest Asian cities, i.e., ShanghaiShanghai (Gan and Breuste). Part IV targets to improve the understanding of nature protectionProtection and biodiversityBiodiversity in cities under different natural and societal conditions.

Cristian Ioja, Jürgen Breuste
Bridging the People–Nature Divide Using the Participatory Planning of Urban Protected Areas

Urban protected areas offer evident benefitsBenefit for urbanUrban biodiversity biodiversityBiodiversity, residents, economies and public administration. These benefitsBenefit are related to the managementManagement practices, which have to consider challenges and stakeholder’s interests. This chapter aims to demonstrate the utility of participatory planningPlanning instruments in obtaining a consensus between stakeholders for urban protected area managementManagement. We tested different participatory planningPlanning methods in Văcărești Nature Park (VNP), located in BucharestBucharest, Romania. We used a social survey, an online GIS platform and role-playing workshops. Our results show that participatory planningPlanning can bring up many advantages for urban protected areas. The spatial knowledge of local people concerning threats and problems, the position of different stakeholders, and the mapping of species or ecosystem servicesEcosystem services are only a few of them. We found out that only 45.6% of the residents living in the VNP neighborhood visit the location frequently, VNP being completely unattractive for children. The limited attractivity is related to low security, non-aesthetic landscapesLandscape and limited amenities. In terms of managementManagement practices, we found a gap between what people expect from VNP, what public decision-makers want it to be and what the real state of facts is. Hence, participatory planningPlanning should be considered in urban managementManagement.

Cristian Ioja, Jürgen Breuste, Gabriel-Ovidiu Vânău, Constantina-Alina Hossu, Mihai-Răzvan Niţă, Ana-Maria Popa, Diana-Andreea Onose, Andreea-Raluca Slave
The Nature Outside Cities: Trade-Offs and Synergies of Cultural Ecosystem Services from Natura 2000 Sites

The high level of anthropization in urban areas has induced a shift of resource demand, where the supply has moved outside the cities’ boundaries. Thus, protected areas located in the cities’ proximity have faced pressure to satisfy cities’ needs leading to conflicts and loss of critical ecosystem servicesEcosystem services. Our study aims to assess the cultural ecosystemEcosystem services servicesCultural ecosystem services (CES) and recreational activities provided by five Natura 2000Natura 2000 sites located in near-urban environments. We used photographs uploaded on social media and multiple correspondence analysis to investigate the synergies and trade-offsSynergies and Trade-offs between different CES and recreational activities. Analyzed photosPhotos showed synergies between aesthetic values and related activities, such as photographing landscapesLandscape and watching wildlife. However, we found trade-offs between aesthetic values and recreational activities, which are the result of the different types of managementManagement. Protected areas offer multiple opportunities for conducting scientific and educational investigations to conserve and protect key species and habitatsHabitat. As a result, we found synergies between knowledge values and educational and conservational activities. We conclude that Natura 2000Natura 2000 sites located in the proximity of urban spaces are valuable places for nature-experience outside cities. Therefore, the importance of such locations has to be considered when planningPlanning urban greenGreen infrastructure.

Denisa Lavinia Badiu, Constantina-Alina Hossu, Cristian Ioja, Mihai-Răzvan Niţă
Urban Biodiversity Under Global Trends and Drivers—A Comparative Study of Urban Parks in Poznań (Poland) and Salzburg (Austria)

Our research aimed to evaluate the role of urban parks in plant biodiversityBiodiversity conservation. Parks diversified in terms of climatic conditions, origin, greenery composition and maintaining practice were investigated. Plant speciesSpecies richness richnessPlant species richness and diversityDiversity of spontaneous vascular floraSpontaneous vascular flora were the main focus points of the research. We investigated the matter in the parks in Poznań (Poland) and SalzburgSalzburg (Austria). A relationship between the plant biodiversityBiodiversity and the architectural pattern of park greenery, as well as maintenance standards, was examined. There were types of vegetationVegetation patches that differ in physiognomy and way of their care managementManagement. We mapped each patch of spontaneous vascular floraSpontaneous vascular flora. We considered the species composition of the flora of each type taking into account such species traits as taxonomic position, Raunkiaer’s life form, geographic element, oceanic index, geographical and historical status, syntaxonomic rank and ancient woodland plant indicatorIndicator. The types of vegetationVegetation patches that are friendly to biodiversityBiodiversity have been identified. A negative impact of excessive manicured greenery on plant speciesSpecies richness richnessPlant species richness and diversityDiversity has been proved. Despite a few mistakes in care managementManagement, parks should be in general considered as greenGreen spaces of high native plant richness and diversityDiversity.

Janina Borysiak, Jürgen Breuste, Andrzej Mizgajski
Relationship Between Built Environment and Biodiversity in High-Density Metropolitan Areas: The Case of Shanghai, China

ShanghaiShanghai is a metropolitan city with the highest urbanizationUrbanization rate in China. It is also a coastal city with rich terrestrial–rivershed–marine ecotones that provide diverse types of habitatHabitat and food resources for wildlife. However, as a consequence of its rapid urban development over the last four decades, the continuous reduction of urban natural ecological space has led to habitatHabitat fragmentation and loss of biodiversityBiodiversity. This chapter analyses the relationship between the built environmentBuilt environment and biodiversityBiodiversity at the district level in ShanghaiShanghai. We performed Pearson’s correlation analysis between the biodiversityBiodiversity variables and development intensityDevelopment intensity, ecological landEcological land and water networkWater network variables of each district unit to explore how the urban built environmentBuilt environment influences biodiversityBiodiversity at the macroscale. Based on the research results, we propose the following planningPlanning suggestions that aim to protect and enhance biodiversityBiodiversity: (1) development intensityDevelopment intensity control and avoiding construction intrusion in key natural land areas; (2) ascertaining a minimum threshold space of ecological landEcological land and defining the specific proportion of each ecological landEcological land category; (3) improving the urban ecological river network connectivityConnectivity.

Jing Gan, Jürgen Breuste
Urban Greening as a Response to Societal Challenges. Toward Biophilic Megacities (Case Studies of Saint Petersburg and Moscow, Russia)

The population density in megacities is continuously increasing, resulting in a reduction of greenGreen spaces and a deterioration in the urban environment quality. Urban greenGreen is often being replaced by parking places, shopping centers, and service enterprises. This chapter examines the efforts of two megacities in Russia—MoscowMoscow and Saint Petersburg—to organize sustainable greening solutions for their residential areas using new achievements in landscapeLandscape designDesign theory and practice, such as the concept of the biophilic cityBiophilic city. The chapter analyzes the history of greening strategies and discusses the concept of urban greenGreen infrastructure and its implementation in both Russian megacities. The chapter presents an assessmentAssessment of the current state of urban greenGreen spaces and the most recent master plans and how these cities are facing and responding to modern societal challenges. The results of an analytical review of the most successful urban greening projects in MoscowMoscow and Saint Petersburg are presented as well. The economic and climatic features of the urban greenGreen areas and their architectural and planningPlanning features are considered, along with strategies for further development of the urban greenGreen spaces in both cities, aiming to address the new principles of biophilic citiesBiophilic city.

Diana Dushkova, Maria Ignatieva, Irina Melnichuk
Perceptions, Expectations, and Preferences of Istanbul Residents Related to Nature and Nature Experience

This chapter aims to examine human preferences to nature experienceNature experience. The research itself has three main focus points: (1) people associations with nature and recreationRecreation; (2) their level of desire to spend time in four different types of nature (a seaside, near a lakeLakes, forestForest, urban park); (3) the reason of their visit (e.g., escaping from city noise, recovering from the work stress), and (4) the quality and quantity of their nature observation. We performed face-to-face interviews with 500 respondents. The data revealed that the majority of the respondents associate nature with a sound, scene, place, state, or area related to greenGreen or natural spaces and relate resting with being away from daily routines and passive activities such as sleeping. Overall, we conclude that people in IstanbulIstanbul have a strong preference for greenGreen spaces containing water bodies, with the seaside being the most favorite one. The main reason for the visit is resting. In general, people are interested in the landscapeLandscape. However, we found a low level of interest and limited awareness of fauna and flora in natural areas.

Meryem Hayir-Kanat, Jürgen Breuste

Multifunctional Urban Green Spaces

Multifunctional Urban Green Spaces

The chapters in Part V aim to contribute to a better understanding about the planningPlanning of multifunctional urbanMulti-functional Urban Green Spaces greenGreen infrastructure for compact citiesCompact city (Hansen and Pauleit) and a general concept of visitors’ demands and supply of recreational services (Breuste et al.). Szilassi et al. discuss people’s perception of various structural vegetationVegetation types. The recreational use of nature areas in IstanbulIstanbul shows the attractiveness of urban greenGreen areas of different type (Hayir-Kanat and Breuste). This also includes the relationship between form and structure of greenGreen spaces (Faggi and Breuste) and the urban ecosystem resources (Rahimi and Breuste). The connectivityConnectivity of social ties and biodiversityBiodiversity is exemplary explained on an urban park (Reyes-Paecke et al.). Onose et al. show that urban greenGreen areas can be troublesome in urban development and in the perception of people. Nita et al. try to find a balance in multifunctionality of urban parks by visitors’ perceptionsVisitors’ perception. The case studies cover a wide scope of geographical backgrounds, ranging from Central Europe (Hansen and Pauleit, Szilassi et al.) to South Eastern Europe (Onose et al., Nita et al., Hayir-Kanat and Breuste), Latin America (Faggi and Breuste, Reyes-Paecke et al.), China (Breuste et al.) and Iran (Rahimi and Breuste).

Jürgen Breuste, Martina Artmann
Relationship Between Form and Structure of Green Spaces and Uses: The Case of Parks in Buenos Aires City, Argentina

The size and designDesign of greenGreen spaces, their landscaping, accessibilityAccessibility, facilities, and the distanceDistance to visitors’ homes may influence their use. In this chapter, we aim to describe the impact of form, presence of greenGreen and gray infrastructure as well as the surrounding urban complexity on the diverse use of the space in various typologies of greenGreen areas in the metropolis Buenos AiresBuenos Aires, Argentina. For this purpose, we summarize outcomes from the research we have been carrying out between 2011 and 2018 in reservesReserves, parks, plazasPlaza, and linear and pocket parksPocket parks. Field inventories assessed infrastructure, diversityDiversity of land usesLand use in the surroundings, uses and activities performed in the urban greenGreen space, as well as people´s perceptions. Results showed that usage was linked to particular characteristics of forms, structures, and sizes. PlazasPlaza and parks were characterized by livable surroundings as proved by the higher values of the urban complexity indicatorIndicator. Natural reservesReserves, linear parks,Linear parks and parks were ideal places for active physical actions, contrary to pocket parksPocket parks and plazasPlaza preferred for relaxing, reading, or eating/drinking.

Ana Faggi, Jürgen Breuste
Visitors’ Demands and the Present Supply of Recreational Services in Urban Parks in Shanghai (China)

This investigation explores the present state of Shanghai’sShanghai endeavor to offer parks which meet the users’ recreational needs by investigating two new and two old urban parks. The applied approach equally considers visitors’ demands and motivations for park visits and present supply of recreational services in parks, which allow the exposure of possible deficiencies in this respect. A diverse set of methods is employed encompassing qualitative methods (guideline-based interviews) and quantitative methods (mapping of the study areas and survey questionnaireQuestionnaire with 431 participants). The survey results indicate that visitors are generally satisfied with the provided park structures in the investigated parks. Yet, mapping and observation outcomes point to livelier atmospheres, and more diverse recreationRecreation offers in the old parks. The park users are particularly attracted by the possibility to be in contact with nature, to find relaxation, and to do exercises in greenGreen spaces. The identified park attributes beneficial for recreationRecreation range from physical park features, such as diverse facilities and moderate vegetationVegetation density, to non-physical aspects such as tranquility, privacy, and the impression of refuge. Cognitive, emotional, behavioral, and social aspects appear to have a considerable impact on user preferences.

Jürgen Breuste, Simone Zippel, Marc Gimenez-Maranges
Urban Residents’ Preferences and Recreational Use of Urban Nature in Istanbul

This research examined individuals' preferences, satisfaction, and use patterns within the recreational areasRecreational areas in IstanbulIstanbul. We explored the most preferred places for recreationRecreation, reasons and frequency of visits, the average time to arrive and spend at recreational spaces, types of recreational activities people performed, and satisfaction with the recreational areasRecreational areas. Based on face-to-face interviews with 500 respondents, data showed that seaside parksSeaside parks are the most preferred area for recreationRecreation. Sea coasts were visited less frequently, and the visits were characteristic with both longer travel time and stay. The majority visited their preferred recreational area at least once a month or more often. The typical activity was represented by walking around. The beauty of nature was the primary reason when selecting the recreational area. The study found a strong correlation between travel time, visit's frequency and stay length. The longer the time travel, the less frequently was the area visited, however, the longer the stay was. The findings of this study provide important clues for city planners, policymakers, and municipalities regarding the individuals’ satisfaction and use of urban greenGreen areas. Therefore, the results can help to improve urban greenGreen spaces.

Meryem Hayir-Kanat, Jürgen Breuste
Planning Multifunctional Urban Green Infrastructure for Compact Cities in Europe

TheUrbanization urbanizationUrban green infrastructure rate is considerably high in Europe. Hence, there is a limited opportunity for improving the provision of urban greenGreen spaces. However, the compact cityCompact city model can be combined with greenGreen planningPlanning strategies such as urban greenGreen infrastructure. The two core principles of urban greenGreen infrastructure planningPlanning—multifunctionality and connectivityConnectivity—aim to improve access and provide multiple social and ecological benefitsBenefit on restricted space. In this chapter, we discuss how the German capital of BerlinBerlin aims at developing a greenGreen and compact cityCompact city with a focus on multifunctionality. The city administration employs different planningPlanning strategies to establish a multifunctional and connected greenGreen infrastructure, most notably the LandscapeLandscape Program. The LandscapeLandscape Program includes thematic projects and an action plan, the “General Urban Mitigation Plan”, to develop greenGreen spaces that combine priorities from the thematic plans. GreenGreen spaces implemented by the action plan such as the “Park auf dem Nordbahnhof” and landscapeLandscape parkLandscape park “Johannisthal” represent good practice examples in terms of combining multiple functions for recreation, cultural heritage, and biodiversityBiodiversity. These cases exemplify how multifunctionality can be encouraged at the site level with designDesign and managementManagement interventions such as zoning or path structures.

Rieke Hansen, Stephan Pauleit
Changes in Urban Green Infrastructure in Tabriz, Iran

Urban parksUrban green infrastructure should provide access to all urban dwellers within proximity to their residences. This study aims to investigate the accessibilityAccessibility of parks as related to the social status of the inhabitants. The matter was investigated on the example of a socially stratified city Tabriz, Iran. The study examines available park services and potential users within an accessible distanceDistance. Park services were identified using quantifiable structural park indicatorsIndicator. The approachable extent was determined based on the park size in different buffer zones. Population quantification as related to potential users by social status in different distancesDistance to the parks shows the accessibilityAccessibility of parks for different quantities of inhabitants and various social strata. The society was classified into three classes based on social status (high, middle, and low). Many households do not enjoy government recommended levels of access to public greenGreen spaces in Tabriz, and the results highlight the social segregation in park distribution and their accessibilityAccessibility. The best parks lie in the high social status areas, and the accessibilityAccessibility is the best among all societal levels.

Akbar Rahimi, Jürgen Breuste
Mobile Application-Based Field Survey as a Possible Tool for Investigating Visitors’ Perception and Preferences of the Vegetation in Urban Parks

In recent years, numerous studies have reported the importance of the human perception of the qualities of urban greenGreen spaces. While we can measure the value of most ecosystem servicesEcosystem services quantitatively, the real values of the individual vegetationVegetation are often determined by human perception. Creating and maintaining vegetationVegetation in a way that it meets the most needs, urban planners and decision-makers need to understand the differences between visitor preferences regarding various structural vegetationVegetation types (SVT). In the present study, we tested a mobile application-based survey method (Park Survey) as a possible tool for the assessment of human perception and preferences regarding park vegetationVegetation. The subjects of the investigation were university students in SalzburgSalzburg, Austria. The results indicated participants’ general inclination of the forestForest vegetationVegetation type, while aesthetically grovesGrove and water areas were the most valued SVTs. Future evaluation of visitors' or other focus groups' attitudes towards urban vegetationVegetation utilization of Park Survey could prove as a highly effective surveying method.

Péter Szilassi, Jürgen Breuste, Ronald A. Kolcsár, Gerhard Aigner
Searching for the Perfect Balance in the Multifunctionality of Urban Green Parks

Urban parks are elements delivering at an urban level a variety of ecosystem servicesEcosystem services, attracting a wide range of visitors with specific requirements. These benefitsBenefit brought by their multifunctionality need to be carefully balanced with potential dysfunctions. Using an urban park from BucharestBucharest, Romania, as a case study, we analyzed the perception of visitors regarding the multitude of park functions and their benefitsBenefit and dysfunctions. For the last 12 years, we applied questionnairesQuestionnaire which revealed that the profile of visits has shifted as people access the park more frequently, but spend less time with each visit, and tend to have a very specialized profile, accessing a single park function. Some of the visitors are in an almost conflicting situation between the activity they access and other opposing park functions. Our results are of significant importance and should be used to integrating the multifunctionality of urban parks in the planningPlanning process.

Mihai-Răzvan Niţă, Cristian Ioja, Ana-Maria Popa
Green Struggle—Environmental Conflicts Involving Urban Green Areas in Bucharest City

GreenGreen areas represent a vital component of urban settlements improving the environmental quality and offering a great variety of ecosystem servicesEcosystem services. However, in the context of the volatile legislation characterizing post-socialist societies, they can often get stuck between opposing interests. The study aims to outline a general image of the environmental conflictsEnvironmental conflicts occurring inside parks in a post-socialist city and offer an assessmentAssessment model usable in any urban area. We used mass media to create a database containing all environmental conflictsEnvironmental conflicts related to the 25 largest parks in BucharestBucharest. Results showed BucharestBucharest suffered a loss in the greenGreen surface after the fall of socialism. Large areas, including almost 60 ha of parks, have been transformed mainly into residential areas or private institutional gardensGarden. We defined five categories of conflicts occurring inside urban parks. The analysis highlighted an increasing number of conflicts in recent years, the difficulty in establishing responsible parties and the small number of solved problems. The loss of greenGreen areas is driven by a weak legislative framework and its frequent changes in line with the interests of the responsible authorities. The developed typology could help planners to develop standardized resolution strategies that are usable for each category of conflicts.

Diana-Andreea Onose, Cristian Ioja, Mihai-Răzvan Niţă, Denisa Lavinia Badiu, Constantina-Alina Hossu
Strengthening Social Ties and Biodiversity Through an Urban Park: 18 de Septiembre Park, La Serena, Chile

This chapter presents Parque 18 de Septiembre (La Serena, Chile) as a successful example of aCommunity community-based initiative. This park lies in a peri-urban residential area, made up of social housing complexes, with around 20,000 inhabitants. In 2000, several communityCommunity organizations were grouped in the La Antena Territorial Network to join forces to carry out their projects. The Network promoted the construction of the 18 de Septiembre Park on a large vacant lot, which was obtained after a significant pressure to the authorities. Likewise, a communityCommunity company was founded to take charge of the maintenance of the park, whose workers are residents of the same sector. Today, the park stands out for being the most biodiverse in the city, having the higher birdsBirds and plants diversity, and the excellent state of the vegetationVegetation, trails and facilities present. It also harbors multiple cultural, sports and environmental activities. For the communityCommunity leaders, the park is a testimony to collective efforts to improve the quality of life in a communityCommunity characterized by a high level of social vulnerability and political marginalization.

Sonia Reyes-Paecke, Alfonsina Puppo, Francisca Magnani, Valentina Salinas
Making Green Cities
herausgegeben von
Jürgen Breuste
Martina Artmann
Cristian Ioja
Salman Qureshi
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