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Article

Perceptions of Urban Green Areas during the Social Distancing Period for COVID-19 Containment in Italy

Department of Agricultural, Forest and Food Sciences, University of Turin, Largo Paolo Braccini 2, 10095 Grugliasco (TO), Italy
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Douglas D. Archbold and Genhua Niu
Horticulturae 2021, 7(3), 55; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae7030055
Received: 29 January 2021 / Revised: 11 March 2021 / Accepted: 16 March 2021 / Published: 18 March 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Horticulture and Nature-Based Solutions for Better Cities )
The scientific community recognizes that urban green areas play an important role in supporting human wellbeing. Green spaces are used differently by citizens accordingly to their age, gender, education, or lifestyle. During the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic period in 2020, public green areas were closed due to the limitations imposed by social distancing in Italy and people were forced to stay at home. The aim of this research was to investigate the importance of public green areas in the life of the population in relation to the limits imposed during the first lockdown in Italy. A participatory approach was used, and an online questionnaire focused on people’s perceptions about the public attendance in green areas and their main uses pre-, during, and post-COVID-19 emergency period was administrated randomly to the adult population. The questions focused on the habit, frequency, and duration of park visits and about the individual perceptions and feelings about the green areas close (maximum 200 m distance) to their residences. A total of 3286 responses were obtained and analyzed at national and regional levels (Piemonte). In order to have a general national overview, a basic descriptive statistic was applied using all answers, elaborated in the form of percentages. At the regional level, questions were selected and compared to determine if answers were in related. Statistical analyses with chi-square tests and correspondence analyses were performed. The results indicated that the social distancing period for COVID-19 containment in Italy influenced perceptions about urban green areas. The importance of having outdoor green spaces was highlighted and an increase in interest about urban green areas was observed. Future planning strategies will have to consider the need of designing urban green areas for having more livable cities. View Full-Text
Keywords: human wellbeing; urban horticulture; questionnaire; ecosystem services; environmental justice; planning human wellbeing; urban horticulture; questionnaire; ecosystem services; environmental justice; planning
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MDPI and ACS Style

Larcher, F.; Pomatto, E.; Battisti, L.; Gullino, P.; Devecchi, M. Perceptions of Urban Green Areas during the Social Distancing Period for COVID-19 Containment in Italy. Horticulturae 2021, 7, 55. https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae7030055

AMA Style

Larcher F, Pomatto E, Battisti L, Gullino P, Devecchi M. Perceptions of Urban Green Areas during the Social Distancing Period for COVID-19 Containment in Italy. Horticulturae. 2021; 7(3):55. https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae7030055

Chicago/Turabian Style

Larcher, Federica, Enrico Pomatto, Luca Battisti, Paola Gullino, and Marco Devecchi. 2021. "Perceptions of Urban Green Areas during the Social Distancing Period for COVID-19 Containment in Italy" Horticulturae 7, no. 3: 55. https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae7030055

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