An examination of park preferences and behaviors among urban residents: The role of residential location, race and age

Laura L. Payne, Andrew J. Mowen, Elizabeth Orsega-Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

149 Scopus citations

Abstract

We examined the relationship between age, race and residential location with respect to four issues salient to public park agencies, (a) citizens' perceived need for additional park land; (b) preferences for the desired function of that park land (e.g., conservation vs. recreation); (c) preferences for the style of recreation (e.g., developed vs. nature-based recreation); and, (d) level of existing visitation to local parks. Data for this study was drawn from a general population of urbanites residing within a seven-mile radius of Cleveland Metroparks' newly opened Ohio and Erie Canal Reservation. Computer-assisted telephone interviewing (CATI) was used to collect data from respondents during an 8- to 10-minute interview. Eight hundred telephone interviews were completed in December, 2000, representing an overall response rate of 77% and an overall sampling error of ± 3.5%. Four logistic regression models were generated to test the relationships of interest. Results of the study suggested that while all three variables (race, age, and residential location) contributed significantly to the models, age was the strongest predictor of support/nonsupport for additional park land. Examination of park preferences revealed that older adults and Blacks were more likely to prefer recreation to conservation than younger adults and Whites. Race, however, was the strongest of these characteristics in terms of predictive power. Race had the strongest influence on the preference for type of recreation activity. When examining park visitation, older adults and Blacks were more likely to be nonvisitors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)181-198
Number of pages18
JournalLeisure Sciences
Volume24
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 2002

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management

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