Blue and Green Spaces as Therapeutic Landscapes: Health Effects of Urban Water Canal Areas of Isfahan

Amirafshar Vaeztavakoli, Azadeh Lak, Tan Yigitcanlar
2018 Sustainability  
Blue and green spaces contribute to the quality of cities in various ways—ranging from providing air corridors and visual amenities to positively affecting public psychological health and wellbeing. Urban blue and green spaces had geopolitical and agricultural functions in the past. These functions are still evident in many cities. They also provide ecological qualities for the surrounding (sub)urban neighborhoods. While in recent decades, many studies have explored the features and
more » ... res and characteristics of urban blue and green spaces that are associated with positive health benefits, the healthy lifestyle promoting role of artificial water canals has received little attention. This case report investigates the canals in Isfahan from Iran that branch off from the Zayandeh Rood River and provide blue and green corridors to the city. The aim of this case report study is to explore the health aspects of urban water canals in physical, mental, and social dimensions based on the residents' experiences. The study develops a framework for assessing the quality of therapeutic effect of canals in Isfahan, Iran. The paper employs qualitative content analysis as the methodological approach. In total, 200 people from the residential neighborhoods of the Niasarm Canal participated in semi-structured interviews in early 2018. The results of this research reveal that the canal—with 'upgrade of active life', 'sense of rehabilitation, relaxation and concentration along with the canal', 'promotion of social life', and 'place identity' characteristics—plays an important therapeutic role on the physical, psychological, and social health conditions of local residents.
doi:10.3390/su10114010 fatcat:2yud3t5lurfdhiyolaov2xpv4u