ABSTRACT

The intrinsic value of open spaces has long been recognised and can be influenced by their location, size, facilities and perceived quality. Residences overlooking important city parks such as New York’s Central Park have been prestigious addresses since the nineteenth century. Green and open spaces can have a strong impact on attracting workers, inhabitants and visitors, generating income and contributing to the local GDP (CSI, 2008).As well as such financial ‘benefits’, good-quality open space has ecological ‘value’ for biodiversity and social ‘value’ for residents and users in terms of mental/physical health and wellbeing. As highlighted in Chapter 2, numerous studies show the importance of parks and green spaces in

improving physical and mental health, supporting biodiversity, flood water absorption, improving air quality, mitigating the urban heat island effect, boosting property prices, facilitating business staff retention, encouraging local identity and many other things that local and national governments are trying to achieve.

(CABE Space, 2009a, p. 65)