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The economic value of urban forest amenities: An application of the contingent valuation method



The economic value of urban forest amenities: An application of the contingent valuation method



Landscape & Urban Planning 43(1-3): 105-118



Green spaces have important amenity values contributing to the quality of urban life. The deconstruction of green spaces cause negative externalities e.g. the loss of non-priced benefits. In land-use planning, therefore, amenity values should be systematically assessed and measured commensurately, i.e. in monetary terms with material values. This paper discusses the suitability of the contingent valuation method in assessing urban forest benefits, and presents the main results of an empirical study conducted in Joensuu, the capital of North Carelia, Finland. The study was designed to measure the use-values of urban wooded recreation areas, and the residents' willingness to pay for small forest parks contributing to the quality of the housing environment. The results suggest that most visitors were willing to pay for the use of wooded recreation areas. Furthermore, approximately half of the respondents were willing to pay to prevent the conversion of forested parks to another land-use. The results can be used to assess the profitability of the management of urban forests. In addition, the results are useful in assessing the value of green space benefits in different land use options.

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Accession: 011491233

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DOI: 10.1016/s0169-2046(98)00103-0


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