Greening strategies, participatory planning and liveability
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Recent developments indicate that greenery, participation, and liveability require increasing attention. The pandemic showed that a green environment is important for both mental health and physical health (Uchiyama & Kohsaka, 2020). Participation on the other hand, plays an important role in the ‘Nieuwe Omgevingswet’ (Gieling & Haartsen, 2016). The liveability of cities becomes more and more important due to the increasing city population (Ritchie & Roser, 2019). To be able to improve the liveability by using greening strategies and participatory planning, it is needed to gain more knowledge of the relation between these three elements. Therefore, this research aims to answer the following research question: ‘How and to what extend do greening strategies and participatory planning in the neighbourhood Geuzenveld in Amsterdam contribute to improving its liveability?’ In this research, the neighbourhood Geuzenveld, located in Amsterdam, is used as a case study. The focus is on this neighbourhood because here participatory planning and greening strategies have already been used in practice to improve the liveability. During this research, different methods are used to gather the findings. First, document analysis was performed on seventeen documents varying from the global to local level to get insight into the planning context. Furthermore, fifteen people are interviewed, some of whom were residents and some who were involved as a professional in the neighbourhood. This was to gain on the one hand insight into the experience of the residents and on the other hand how the professionals contribute to the liveability in Geuzenveld. Lastly, observations have been done to see what the greenery actually looks like and how it is used. The findings of this study generally correspond to what was expected from the literature. Unfortunately, there is not found a clear direct relationship between the three elements (participatory planning, greening strategies, and liveability). However, it has been found that greenery can indeed contribute to improving liveability. This is especially the case when a green environment is seen as important by the residents. Furthermore, the residents have the opportunity to participate in different ways and participation can at least indirectly contribute to liveability because it provides insights into the requirements of the residents. To get an even better insight into the effect of participatory planning and greening strategies on liveability, it is recommended to do more extensive research that both uses surveys and interviews as research methods.