Landscape Preferences and Distance Decay Analysis for Mapping the Recreational Potential of an Urban Area
Green infrastructure plays an important role in recreation and human well-being, especially in urban and peri-urban areas. Our study aimed to evaluate and map the recreational potential of an urban area (Brașov, Romania) using two data sets: (a) people's preferred landscape features and (b) preferred locations where outdoor activities and recreation take place. The latter was gathered through participatory mapping techniques. For each location, we computed explanatory variables, e.g., the
... ce to 19 landscape elements known to be important for recreation. Based on (b), we determined the recreational activity profiles for each participant and evaluated how well these profiles matched the participant's preferences for landscape features (dataset a). Finally, recreational potential was mapped by computing a recreational index using dataset b. Two preference profiles (P1: urban, infrastructure-oriented; P2: nature-oriented) were identified based on people's preferred landscape features, and three recreational activity profiles were identified based on the preferred locations, i.e., an "urban", a "nature", and an "ubiquist" type. The importance of green infrastructures for recreation in both preference profiles was striking. Many persons belonging to the urban and infrastructure-oriented group indicated that they recreate in locations with a high amount of green infrastructure and nature. The map of the recreational potential shows hotspots for recreation but also areas lacking recreational provisions, giving useful insight for future urban planning.