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Sci Total Environ. 2013 Jun 1;454-455:474-81. doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2013.03.038. Epub 2013 Apr 9.

Landscape effects on soundscape experience in city parks.

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Key Lab of Urban Environment and Health, Institute of Urban Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xiamen, China.


The main objective of this study was to analyse the effects of various landscape factors on soundscape perception in city parks. This was based on the experience, which was supposed to reflect soundscape perception, of 580 users of five city parks in Xiamen, China. Visual and functional landscape characteristics were analysed in relation to experienced occurrence of and preference for individual sounds, as well as overall soundscape preference. The results suggest that landscape factors have more significant effects on experienced occurrence of individual sounds than preference for individual sounds. However, landscape effects on overall soundscape preference depend more on preferences for individual sounds. The effects of visual landscape on the perception of individual sounds could be more important in natural sounds than in artificial sounds, and more in experienced occurrence of than preference for individual sounds; for functional landscape the effects are reversed. In general, visual landscape effects on the perception of individual sounds are more significant than functional landscape effects, especially on experienced occurrence of individual sounds. Taking all factors into account, only the two landscape factors are highly correlated with the overall soundscape preference, with coefficient values of 0.325 and 0.204, respectively. Overall, the results reveal the close relationship between landscape and soundscape experience in real contexts, and that visual and functional aspects should be considered in terms of creating a better soundscape during park design and management processes. The analysis of users' social, demographical and behavioural factors such as age, visit frequency and length of stay, in relation to the soundscape experience, has also shown significant effects.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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