Urban stream restoration in Korea: Design considerations and residents' willingness to pay

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Urban streams in Korea, which until recently were channeled and served only flood control functions, have increasingly attracted attention for their potential as urban parks or residential open spaces. Consequently, urban stream restoration has been booming and a number of restoration projects have been carried out since 1990s. However, increased flash flood risks created by climate change are reigniting controversies regarding the vulnerability of restored streams to flooding. Furthermore, implementation issues including landscape/greening and facility design considerations have been under-investigated. This study explores these ongoing issues associated with urban stream restoration in Korea, as well as attempts to estimate consumers' willingness to pay for the restoration process. In particular, this study estimates the partial values of natural and recreational attributes of urban streams, which can be improved through various types of urban stream restoration measures, using conjoint analysis. The findings indicate that improving natural attributes by transforming existing concrete-encased streams into natural state streams increases the value of an urban stream by about 50 USD per household. Improving recreational attributes, either by creating a walkway where there is no bank or by expanding facilities to the existing walkway, increases the value of an urban stream by about 25 USD per household. These estimated partial values of urban stream attributes imply the relative importance of each attribute and suggest policy implications for priority setting and trade-offs in urban restoration projects.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)119-126
Number of pages8
JournalUrban Forestry and Urban Greening
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Mar 8


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Forestry
  • Ecology
  • Soil Science

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