Associations between overhead-view and eye-level urban greenness and cycling behaviors

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

55 Scopus Citations
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Author(s)

Detail(s)

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10-18
Journal / PublicationCities
Volume88
Online published9 Jan 2019
Publication statusPublished - May 2019

Abstract

Cycling is one type of physical activities with documented health and environmental benefits. Little consensus has been reached about the impacts of urban greenness on cycling behavior because of the widely varying estimation techniques, especially at street scale. We objectively measured the urban greenness in two ways: overhead-view greenness by Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) and eye-level street greenness by Google Street View (GSV) images. Multilevel logistic regression models were used to examine the association between urban greenness and the odds of cycling (versus not cycling) for 5701 Hong Kong participants after controlling activity-influencing built environment and individual-level covariates. We found the odds of cycling were positively associated with eye-level street greenness but not with overhead-view greenness across three buffer zones: 400 m, 800 m and 1600 m. In addition, the odds of cycling were negatively associated with population density, number of bus stops, and terrain slope, while positively associated with bike lane density. To build a cycling-friendly city, planners and designers might need to pay more attention to improve citizens’ daily exposure to urban greenness, instead of traditional greenspace indices such as greenspace area or number of parks. The GSV technique is a novel and reliable method for measuring eye-level urban greenness with potential usage in further healthy city studies.

Research Area(s)

  • Bikeability, Built environment, Cycling, Eye-level greenness, Physical activity, Street greenness, Urban green space