The value of establishing and maintaining green spaces within communities is a message that continues to gain momentum. Aside from the economic value a well-maintained lawn and home or business landscape provides, new research shows that turning vacant lots into attractive green spaces may actually make life less stressful.
A study conducted by the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and published in the American Journal of Public Health, indicates that people in two Philadelphia neighborhoods who wore heart rate monitors when they went for walks saw a reduction in heart rate when they walked by a lot that underwent “greening” – cleaning, debris removal, planting grass and trees, and installing a low wooden post- and rail-fence.
“The reduction we found suggests a biological link between urban blight reduction strategies like vacant lot greening and reductions in stress,” said Dr. Eugenia South, the lead author of the study.
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