Soundscape research needs to develop predictive tools for environmental design. A number of descriptor-indicator(s) models have been proposed so far, particularly for the “tranquility” dimension to manage “quiet areas” in urban contexts. However, there is a current lack of models addressing environments offering actively engaging soundscapes, i.e., the “vibrancy” dimension. The main aim of this study was to establish a predictive model for a vibrancy descriptor based on physical parameters, which could be used by designers and practitioners. A group interview was carried out to formulate a hypothesis on what elements would be influential for vibrancy perception. Afterwards, data on vibrancy perception were collected for different locations in the UK and China through a laboratory experiment and their physical parameters were used as indicators to establish a predictive model. Such indicators included both aural and visual parameters. The model, based on Roughness, Presence of People, Fluctuation Strength, Loudness and Presence of Music as predictors, explained 76% of the variance in the mean individual vibrancy scores. A statistically significant correlation was found between vibrancy scores and eventfulness scores, but not between vibrancy scores and pleasantness scores. Overall results showed that vibrancy is contextual and depends both on the soundscape and on the visual scenery.
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