Or more houses or more woods: A holistic approach to value historic urban green structures

More Info


This paper advocates a renewed attitude towards our urban nature, recognizing its trees as green heritage with the capability to increase the liveability of urban areas (SDG11). Planting trees in the Dutch public space started in the seventeenth century and cities became famous for its green atmosphere (1). In the agricultural landscape, trees were methodically planted on country estates and along infrastructure, connecting the rural landscape with the cities (2).
Nowadays, green historic elements are highly values, but doesn't het the same assigned priority as built heritage. The ensuring upcoming public discussion (3) shows a lack of understanding the different values of historic green, especially within the framework of climate change, climate mitigation properties of trees in and around cities and the value for the liveability for communities.

This paper describes a new attitude towards valuing historic green structures. Therefore, a model 4) for holistic understanding as simultaneous physical, mental, and social manifestation in the public realm will be described 5). By recognizing these different aspects, historic urban green structures can be understood and discussed as part of green blue systems, perceiving their climatological, ecological, landscape architectural, and culturalhistoric values.