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The presence of nearby natural areas and green spaces appears to strengthen social ties among neighbors by encouraging the use of common spaces.
Strong community relationships increase the likelihood that individuals will work together to achieve common goals, exchange information, and maintain informal social controls, which leads to cleaner and safer public spaces, less crime, and can have a positive impact on public health.
In a study in Philadelphia, vacant lots—which are often associated with illegal activity—were cleaned of trash and illegal dumping, planted with grass and trees, and had a small wooden fence built around the perimeter.
One study comparing 98 apartment buildings in an inner-city neighborhood indicated that residents with higher amounts of nearby nature reported fewer violent and minor crimes, and fewer incivilities.
We’ve created this guide of nature-based solutions and included case studies of successful projects from across the country to help communities learn more and identify which nature-based solutions might work for them.
Nature offers a powerful set of tools for addressing hazards like flooding and erosion.
Communities have choices in how they prepare for and respond to floods.
Often overlooked is the role that nature and nature-based solutions can play alongside seawalls or dams and levees.