Articles on Green space

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Cities can prepare for climate change emergencies by adding green spaces to help manage stormwater, heat stress and air quality. (Shutterstock)

How cities can add accessible green space in a post-coronavirus world

The coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the lack of green space available to those living in urban areas. Cities must be managed as ecosystems to make them more liveable and resilient.
Our mental health benefits when nature is part of our neighbourhoods, as in this residential street in Fitzroy, Melbourne. Melanie Thomson

Biodiversity and our brains: how ecology and mental health go together in our cities

It's well-established that green spaces are good for our well-being. Now we can demonstrate that greater biodiversity boosts this benefit, as well as helping to sustain native plants and animals.
The lure of suburbia clearly remains strong. To deal with sprawl, planners need to increase urban density in a way that resonates with the leafy green qualities of suburbia that residents value. Julian Bolleter

GOD save us: greenspace-oriented development could make higher density attractive

Residents of the 'leafy suburbs' will continue to fear what they might lose to increasing urban density without an explicit planning approach that enhances green space in affected neighbourhoods.
Sea Line Park, one of the shortlisted entries in the competition to design a new park for the Melbourne of 2050. Future Park Design Ideas Competition

Why we need ‘crazy’ ideas for new city parks

Some might scoff at the free-ranging ideas sparked by a competition to design future parks for Melbourne. But the legacy of a radical idea to green a CBD street in 1985 shows why we need such thinking.
On Akure’s edges, which used to be mainly farmland, buildings are taking over. Author supplied

Nigeria’s Akure is a good example of how not to build a city

City officials have not considered how approaches like mixed-use developments closer to the city centre might alleviate the housing shortage as well as protect Akure's green spaces.
Imagine Hyde Park in Sydney without its tree cover … the impact on this space and the many people who spend time in it would be profound. EA Given/Shutterstock

Increasing tree cover may be like a ‘superfood’ for community mental health

Cities around Australia have plans to increase their green space, but new research shows not all green spaces are equal. Good tree cover is better than grassed areas for residents' mental health.
Contact with nature reduces stress and aggression, one reason scholars say urban green space may reduce violence. Shutterstock

Can parks help cities fight crime?

Some parks reduce violence in the local vicinity. Other parks attract crime. The difference has to do with how these urban green spaces are designed, programmed and managed, experts say.
Tiny Paley Park, surrounded by skyscrapers in New York City, introduced the concept of a ‘pocket park’ in dense urban centers. Aleksandr Zykov/Flickr

Parks help cities – but only if people use them

Research shows that access to urban green space makes people and neighborhoods healthier. But parks can't work their magic if their design ignores the needs of nearby communities.

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