How can you estimate the value that urban communities get from trees and wooded views?
Street trees and woodland views can deliver a wide range of economic, social and health benefits. Forest Research assessed methodologies, especially spatial GIS techniques, for estimating the value of these benefits.
Key findings and recommendations
- Most amenity valuations use revealed and stated preference methods
- There are few nationwide or large-scale valuations of street trees or woodland views in the UK, based on GIS analysis
- The amenity value of woodlands often depends on species composition and conditions; in the UK broadleaved or mixed woodlands have a positive effect on house prices
- New woodlands yield the highest marginal benefits at the urban fringe
- Household characteristics (e.g. education and income level, and the presence of children) can affect the valuation of amenity woodland and open space
- There is a trade-off between the value of timber production and visual amenity values of woodland, especially at the urban fringe
- Visible clear-cut sites can have major negative impacts on visual amenity values
- Hedonic pricing methods are appropriate for case studies which investigate links between the property market, recreation and local use greenspace
- Stated preference methods (i.e. surveys or benefit transfer from the previous surveys) are most appropriate for large-scale changes and/or where non-use or total values are sought
- Future econometric studies should test for functional specification in hedonic models and control for the presence of spatial autocorrelations
- Estimates of the value of woodland views were made as part of the Forestry for People project
- Project summary sheet
- Project summary sheet woodland views
Funders and partners
Commissioned and funded by the Forest Commission
The project was completed in 2009.
For further information contact:
- About our research into people, trees and woodlands
- Forest economics
- Forestry for People: An economic and social valuation of Scottish forestry
- Urban Regeneration and Greenspace Partnership