Urban Green Parks for Long-Term Subjective Well-Being : Empirical Relationships between Personal Characteristics, Park Characteristics, Park Use, Sense of Place, and Satisfaction with Life in The Netherlands

Dinter, Mayke van; Kools, Mieke; Dane, Gamze; Weijs-Perrée, Minou; Chamilothori, Kynthia; Leeuwen, Eveline van; Borgers, Aloys; Berg, Pauline van den


As our living environment is becoming increasingly urbanized, this puts the livability, health, and quality of life in cities under pressure. Due to the urbanization process, urban green spaces are under threat of becoming scarce, while it is recognized that these green spaces can positively contribute to the subjective well-being of citizens. It is thus important to maximize the use and benefits derived from green spaces by designing them as positively experienced places. The aim of this research is to gain more empirical insights on the relationships between personal and park characteristics, park use behavior, sense of place, and park visitors’ long-term subjective well-being (i.e., life satisfaction). An online questionnaire was administered to participants in two medium-sized cities in The Netherlands, namely Eindhoven and ‘s-Hertogenbosch. Data were analyzed using a structural equation model. The results of this study show that the appreciation of facilities and the absence of disturbances positively influence the use and sense of place of a park. Furthermore, the findings show that sense of place has a positive influence on life satisfaction. The findings can be used by designers and policy-makers as guidelines to improve existing parks or to design new parks that support the subjective well-being of individuals in The Netherlands.