Publication Date

March 2019

Sustainable responses to urban development point to the need for higher density neighborhoods coupled with extensive urban tree canopy and greening. However, little research has been conducted with urban residents to ascertain if these urban forms match their preferred setting. This study sought to understand whether higher levels of greening could moderate preference for lower density residential settings when 212 participants rated images for preference. Each of the independent variables, greening and density, made a difference in preference: greener settings were more preferred than less green settings overall, and perceived density was marginally significant in relation to preference. A factor analysis resulted in the grouping of five neighborhood types distinguished by certain characteristics (e.g., greening, buffer, building form) which, together with the qualitative responses suggested insights for making higher density residential environments more preferred. We did not find a significant interaction between greening and perceived density in relation to preference, suggesting that greening does not moderate the density-preference relation.