Van Assche and colleagues investigated why people move from one neighborhood to another, and their findings have broad implications for planning. The researchers report that “Previous research has shown that neighborhood (dis)satisfaction is an important determinant for individuals' moving intentions. Attempts by policy makers to boost neighborhood satisfaction, and hence reduce the exodus of people out of particular neighborhoods, have often involved physical interventions and development projects, such as new parks or infrastructure. . . . we consider this issue . . .
Park probed factors linked to park use. He reports that “As the world becomes more urbanized, neighborhood parks are becoming an increasingly important venue where people engage in physical and social activities. Using park-use data collected by unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), the aim of this study is to account for park use in light of park attributes and neighborhood conditions. . .
Getting people rolling isn't easy
An Engemann-lead team determined that growing up in greener areas has lifelong benefits. The investigators found that “Green space presence was assessed at the individual level using high-resolution satellite data to calculate the normalized difference vegetation index within a 210 × 210 m square around each person’s place of residence (∼1 million people [in Denmark]) from birth to the age of 10. . . . high levels of green space presence during childhood are associated with lower risk of a wide spectrum of psychiatric disorders later in life.
A Konig-lead team confirms the important links between culture and the experience of place. The researchers report that “The living environment plays a critical role in healthy aging. . . . The aim of this study was to shed light on older adults’ (. . .ages 70+) living situations and their demands on the neighborhood in two countries, the United States . . . and Germany. . . . Differences between countries were more pronounced than differences between age groups or living areas, indicating that cultural influence is a key aspect of needs assessment for neighborhood design. . . .
Homelike spaces and neighborhoods, whether they’re in workplaces, residential areas, or elsewhere
Options to improve society-wide wellbeing
Helping low-income residents feel good about urban parks
Garrett and her team investigated the effects of views of water (for example, of oceans) on wellbeing. They found that “A view of blue space from the home was related to good self-reported [general] health” and that “Visiting blue spaces regularly was associated with high wellbeing.” Also, “Visiting blue space regularly was more likely for those within a 10–15 min walk, and who believed visit locations had good facilities and wildlife present. Longer blue space visits, and those involving higher intensity activities, were associated with higher recalled wellbeing.
Researchers have linked living in a greener area with better cardiovascular health. A Yeager-lead team reports that they “measured biomarkers of cardiovascular injury and risk in participant blood and urine. We estimated greenness from satellite‐derived normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) in zones with radii of 250 m and 1 km surrounding the participants’ residences. . contemporaneous NDVI within 250 m of participant residence was inversely associated with urinary levels of epinephrine . . . and F2‐isoprostane. . . .