ArticlePDF Available

Assessing Ecosystem Services Provision as a Support for Metropolitan Green Infrastructure Planning: the Case of Three Spanish Metropolitan Areas

Authors:

Abstract and Figures

The main purpose of this paper is to develop a systematic, spatially explicit approach to the analysis of the ecosystem services provided by the metropolitan landscape that can act as a support for green infrastructure planning. To achieve this, we have proposed a set of indicators to assess and map nine ecosystem services—including regulating, provisioning, habitat and cultural services. This methodology has been applied to three case studies in the south of Spain: the metropolitan areas of Seville, Malaga-Marbella and Cordoba. Despite the geographical proximity of these areas to one another, the indicators show that there are significant differences in their potentialities and available resources to form a multipurpose green space system. The results suggest that further reflection is needed on how the concept of green infrastructure can be applied to metropolitan areas, especially in the Mediterranean region and other similar geographical contexts. Instead of understanding green infrastructure strictly in terms of a network of interconnected green spaces and natural areas, planning initiatives should assign a more important role to the landscape matrix and, in particular, to the multifunctional cultivated space on the urban fringe. In addition, more thought needs to be given to how to create functional green corridors in the metropolitan landscape for public use and habitat conservation. From the perspective of spatial planning, the methodology proposed has been demonstrated to be a useful tool to identify key spaces for the provision of ecosystem services.
This content is subject to copyright. Terms and conditions apply.
Vol.:(0123456789)
Applied Spatial Analysis and Policy
https://doi.org/10.1007/s12061-022-09441-7
1 3
Assessing Ecosystem Services Provision asaSupport
forMetropolitan Green Infrastructure Planning: theCase
ofThree Spanish Metropolitan Areas
JesúsSantiago‑Ramos1 · ClaudiaHurtado‑Rodríguez1
Received: 5 May 2021 / Accepted: 2 March 2022
© The Author(s) 2022
Abstract
The main purpose of this paper is to develop a systematic, spatially explicit approach
to the analysis of the ecosystem services provided by the metropolitan landscape
that can act as a support for green infrastructure planning. To achieve this, we have
proposed a set of indicators to assess and map nine ecosystem services—including
regulating, provisioning, habitat and cultural services. This methodology has been
applied to three case studies in the south of Spain: the metropolitan areas of Seville,
Malaga-Marbella and Cordoba. Despite the geographical proximity of these areas
to one another, the indicators show that there are significant differences in their
potentialities and available resources to form a multipurpose green space system.
The results suggest that further reflection is needed on how the concept of green
infrastructure can be applied to metropolitan areas, especially in the Mediterranean
region and other similar geographical contexts. Instead of understanding green
infrastructure strictly in terms of a network of interconnected green spaces and natu-
ral areas, planning initiatives should assign a more important role to the landscape
matrix and, in particular, to the multifunctional cultivated space on the urban fringe.
In addition, more thought needs to be given to how to create functional green corri-
dors in the metropolitan landscape for public use and habitat conservation. From the
perspective of spatial planning, the methodology proposed has been demonstrated to
be a useful tool to identify key spaces for the provision of ecosystem services.
Keywords Green infrastructure· Metropolitan areas· Spatial planning· Ecosystem
services mapping· Ecosystem services assessment· Landscape multifunctionality
* Jesús Santiago-Ramos
jsanram@upo.es
Claudia Hurtado-Rodríguez
churrod@upo.es
1 Department ofGeography, History andPhilosophy, Universidad Pablo de Olavide, Ctra. de
Utrera, km 1, 41013Seville, Spain
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
J.Santiago-Ramos, C.Hurtado-Rodríguez
1 3
Introduction
In recent years, green infrastructure has become a widely-used approach to the plan-
ning and management of open spaces and natural areas in urbanized environments.
Its core principles are the interconnection of an area’s environmentally valuable
components into a coherent network, the enhancement of its multifunctionality and
the adoption of a proactive, smart focus for its management (European Environment
Agency, 2011a). Although the origin of the concept dates back to the 1990s, when
it emerged as a response to the growing concern for the environmental implications
of urban sprawl (Benedict & McMahon, 2002), the theoretical assumptions behind
green infrastructure are underpinned by well-grounded concepts in the fields of
urban and spatial planning. These include the creation of interconnected networks
of urban and periurban parks, which can be traced back to Frederick Law Olmst-
ed’s mid-nineteenth century proposals for New York and Boston, the development
of greenways and ecological networks for both public use and nature conservation
(Ahern, 1995; Jongman etal., 2004; Opdam etal., 2006), or the application of prin-
ciples derived from landscape ecology to the study and planning of urban regions
(Forman, 2008). The concept of green infrastructure integrates these ideas by pro-
posing an action framework adapted to the challenges faced by today’s cities, posi-
tioning the nurturing of ecosystem services as one of the top priorities for interven-
tion in urbanized areas.
The successful dissemination of the concept in recent years has resulted in its
growing application on both the analytical and propositional levels (EEA, 2011a;
Elmqvist etal., 2013). Green infrastructure has been incorporated into the legisla-
tive framework of the European Union through a Communication from the Euro-
pean Commission entitled ‘Green Infrastructure - Enhancing Europe’s Natural Capi-
tal’ (European Commission, 2013), which ties in with the progressive integration of
the concept into community actions and programs such as the Seventh Framework
Program for the Environment, the European Biodiversity Strategy and the European
Union Strategy for Climate Change. The European Environment Agency (EEA,
2011a, 2014) proposes two basic scales of application: on the one hand, the creation
of regional- and national-scale nature protection systems, and on the other, local-
level green infrastructure design, related to the planning and management of urban
open spaces.
The present research assumes that the metropolitan scale—i.e., an intermediate
step between the mentioned regional and local scales—can be an optimal choice
for the planning of multipurpose green infrastructures in rapidly urbanizing
landscapes. Current urban dynamics and processes—e.g., urban sprawl or urban
mobility—are taking on an increasingly supra-municipal or metropolitan dimen-
sion, clearly extending beyond the traditional city’s administrative limits in both
physical and functional terms (Hall, 1998). Therefore, this scale is progressively
being adopted by academia and institutions as the most suitable for the analysis
and management of urban systems (Organization for Economic Co-operation and
Development, 2012). From the point of view of green infrastructure planning, the
adoption of a metropolitan focus allows us to consider a wide spectrum of open
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
1 3
Assessing Ecosystem Services Provision asaSupport for…
spaces and territorial resources, ranging from urban trees and district parks to
large forest or agricultural areas near or around the city (Feria-Toribio & Santi-
ago-Ramos, 2017). The integration of this diverse range of elements into a single,
interconnected open space system enables the city to achieve a more harmonious
and sustainable relationship with the surrounding area, and allows for a better
spatial articulation between the different urban nuclei that make up the metropoli-
tan area.
From the functional perspective, this greater diversity of components opens the
door to the simultaneous provision of a broad spectrum of ecosystem services:
Regulating services that improve urban environmental conditions through the
reduction of air pollution (Manes etal., 2014; Fusaro etal., 2015; Kim etal.,
2015), the sustainable management of urban hydrological processes (Jia etal.,
2016; Lewellyn etal., 2016), the mitigation of the urban-heat-island effect
(Farrugia et al., 2013) or the adaptation to climate change (Momm-Schult
etal., 2013).
– Provisioning services linked to food production (Magoni & Colucci, 2017)
and primary sector production (European Commission, 2013).
– Services related to the conservation of biodiversity (Wickham et al., 2010)
and the protection of natural habitats in the face of urban sprawl and the frag-
mentation of open spaces (Benedict & McMahon, 2002).
Services linked to social, cultural and recreational benefits (Chiesura, 2004; Zwi-
erzchowska etal., 2018), and the contribution to a healthier (Tzoulas etal., 2007)
and more equitable (Heckert & Rosan, 2016) urban environment for citizens.
Green infrastructure design should enhance the multifunctionality of the metro-
politan landscape, an objective that requires a strategic selection of the components
that will form part of the open space system. In this context, a prior spatially explicit
assessment of the ecosystem services generated in the metropolitan landscape can
help to identify the key spaces that it is a priority to preserve (Zhang & Muñoz
Ramírez, 2019). The lack of this kind of analysis may result in the urbanization of
natural or semi-natural periurban areas with a significant potential for the provision
of environmental functions, as has been observed in different Spanish urban agglom-
erations (Santiago-Ramos,2015). Periurban croplands are especially affected by this
problem, despite being a highly valuable component of the metropolitan landscape
(Pedrazzini & Pedrotti, 2011; Batlle, 2011; Yacamán etal., 2020).
The present work is based on the hypothesis that the metropolitan territory as a
whole constitutes a potential source of ecosystem services. The primary objective of
this study is therefore to develop a systematic approach for the assessment of eco-
system services provision in metropolitan environments. The proposed methodology
is not limited to evaluating the benefits for discrete components of green infrastruc-
tures –e.g., urban parks, nature reserves, etc.–, but also addresses the functionality
of the metropolitan landscape from an integrating, comprehensive viewpoint. This
allows for the functional dimension of the metropolitan landscape matrix –includ-
ing agricultural, forestry and grazing areas, as well as artificial land-uses– to be
assessed.
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
J.Santiago-Ramos, C.Hurtado-Rodríguez
1 3
The second objective of this research is to exploit the application of this meth-
odology to provide a better understanding of the environmental functionality of the
metropolitan landscape. To achieve this, the proposed method will be applied to
three case studies and the results obtained will be discussed from the perspective of
green infrastructure planning. The cases selected for analysis are the metropolitan
areas of Seville, Malaga-Marbella and Cordoba, which are all located in the south of
Spain. The three areas are representative examples of medium-sized urban agglom-
erations in the Mediterranean region; as a result, it may be possible to extend the
reflections of this study to other urban areas of similar size and characteristics.
Study Areas
fvAs can be seen in Fig.1, the three study areas are complex, diverse territories
which are rich in natural habitats and resources, with very different spatial configu-
ration patterns. This enables us to draw up a comparative analysis of these urban
areas, each having different potentialities and limitations despite their geographical
proximity to one another. Table1 sets out the main features of the three areas.
The Seville area has a population of 1,608,704 inhabitants and covers a surface area
of 5756 km2. It is the main urban agglomeration in Andalusia and the fourth largest in
Spain after Madrid, Barcelona and Valencia. Of the three study areas, Seville presents
Fig. 1 Location of the study areas
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
1 3
Assessing Ecosystem Services Provision asaSupport for…
the greatest complexity both from the administrative viewpoint—it is made up of 51
municipalities—and from the perspective of the physical environment. Its diverse land-
scape allows us to identify a variety of territorial sub-units, including areas of plains
and river terraces with a predominance of urban uses and irrigable cropland, mountain-
ous regions to the north, wetlands and rice paddies to the south, and large stretches of
non-irrigated cropland—mainly cereals and olive groves—in the central area.
Seville is followed by the Malaga-Marbella metropolitan area in both size and
complexity. With a population of 1,331,113 inhabitants and a surface area of
2528 km2, this is the most densely populated area of all three. Its 25 municipali-
ties are scattered over a widespread area that ranges from mountains and pre-lit-
toral croplands to a coastline that is almost completely occupied by an unbroken
tract of urban and artificial uses.
Lastly, the metropolitan area of Cordoba is the smallest in terms of population—308,098
inhabitants—and surface area—2108 km2. It is composed of 10 municipalities, with areas
of mountainous woodland to the north and mainly agricultural land associated with the
Guadalquivir valley in the south. The main axis of the metropolitan area is defined by the
presence of the river, around which the main nuclei of the population have been formed.
The limits for the three areas of study have been taken from the proposed delimita-
tion of Spanish metropolitan areas developed by Feria and Martínez (2015), which is
based on conventional, internationally standardized criteria of both functional (com-
muting) and morphological (urban land-use) references. This delimitation method
can be equated to that used by the regional administration for the planning of Anda-
lusian urban agglomerations. This guarantees both the comparability of the results for
the three areas and their possible practical application in the field of spatial planning.
The Seville and Malaga-Marbella areas already have metropolitan-scale planning
instruments in place and the Cordoba area is in the process of drafting a metropolitan
plan; as such, the results of this research could be of practical use to apply, revise or
bring these plans up to date in relation to green infrastructure.
Method
The research methodology takes its general reference from the MAES approach, devel-
oped by the EU’s Joint Research Centre for the evaluation and spatial representation
of ecosystem services at a European scale (Maes etal., 2011), as well as the previous
Table 1 Study areas: General data
Prepared by authors with data from the Municipal Register of Inhabitants (National Statistics Institute,
2020)
Metropolitan area No. of municipalities Population in 2020 Surface area
(km2)
Metropolitan
Plan approval
date
Cordoba 10 380,098 2108 In preparation
Malaga-Marbella 25 1,331,113 2528 2009
Sevilla 51 1,608,704 5756 2009
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
J.Santiago-Ramos, C.Hurtado-Rodríguez
1 3
advances made by the research team in the study of the structure and functionality of
metropolitan open spaces (Santiago-Ramos, 2015; Feria-Toribio & Santiago-Ramos,
2019). The MAES approach provides spatially explicit indicators for several ecosys-
tem services and identifies the contributing land cover classes for each service, facilitat-
ing the quantification and mapping of the environmental benefits considered. For this
study, a set of indicators has been selected and adapted in order to analyse nine ecosys-
tem services considered to be particularly relevant for the planning of a metropolitan
green infrastructure. Table2 shows the indicators and gives a synthetic list of land-use
and land cover classes that have been taken into consideration for calculation and map-
ping. The services and indicators selected have been divided into four categories: regu-
lating services, provisioning services, habitat conservation services, and cultural and
public use-related services. These categories correspond to the classification of land-
scape services proposed by De Groot and Hein (2007), which facilitates the analysis
and discussion of the results in the light of their potential application in spatial planning
processes.
The spatial database used to prepare the maps and calculate the indicators was the
Spanish Land Occupancy Information System (SIOSE), updated for the year 2011 by
the National Geographic Institute of Spain (2015). The SIOSE spatial database has
a reference scale of 1:25,000 and follows an object-oriented data model. It provides
detailed information on the land-use and land cover in each of the spatial units—i.e.,
polygons—into which the territory is divided. For example, a polygon that represents
a crop mosaic could be composed of 60% arable crops, 30% fruit crops and 10% leafy
trees. When each type of cover is given a specific value for one particular ecosystem
service—e.g., an average carbon storage value—, it is possible to quantify the capacity
to provide this service in each of the polygons.
The combination of the chosen indicators with the object-oriented nature of SIOSE
allows a spatially continuous approach to the analysis of most of the environmental
functions considered. The resulting maps reflect how the provision of ecosystem ser-
vices is distributed throughout the metropolitan territory. Each map shows a gradient
of functionality, enabling us to identify key areas for the provision of a particular ser-
vice. This approach makes it possible to assess the benefits provided by the metropol-
itan landscape as a whole, and helps to evaluate the contribution of different spaces
and elements that are usually assigned a secondary role in terms of their environmen-
tal functionality -e.g., agricultural or pasture areas. Only the mapping of cultural and
recreational services is based on the identification of discrete elements -i.e., urban and
periurban parks and public use connectors.
Results
Regulating Services
The regulating services analysed are the mitigation of climate change through the
capture and sequestration of atmospheric carbon, the improvement of air quality
and the regulation of the urban climate by urban and periurban vegetation, and
the hydrological regulation based on permeable soil (see Table3).
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
1 3
Assessing Ecosystem Services Provision asaSupport for…
Table 2 Ecosystem services and indicators
Category Service Indicator (units) Calculation and land-use / land cover classes considered
Regulating services Climate change mitigation C storage (t, t/ha) Reclassification of classes with herbaceous, scrub and
tree vegetation, according to their C storage capacity
(Olson etal., 1985; Gibbs, 2006) (See Table7 in
Annex).
Air quality and urban climate
improvement
Leaf Area Index (dimensionless) Reclassification of classes with herbaceous, scrub and
tree vegetation within a radius of 3km around major
urban areas (greater than 25ha), according to their
Leaf Area Index (Oplustilova etal., 1995; Scurlock
etal., 2001; Santiago-Ramos 2010) (See Table8 in
Annex).
Hydrological regulation Pervious surface area (% pervious surface area) Selection of pervious land cover classes; calculation of
the percentage of pervious surface area for each sub-
basin of the metropolitan area.
Provisioning services Crop production Cultivated area (ha, % of total surface area) Estimation of the area dedicated to agricultural uses,
including irrigated and non-irrigated crops.
Forest production Forest cover (ha, % of total surface area) Estimation of the area dedicated to forest uses, includ-
ing forest plantations and dehesas (a traditional agro-
silvo-pastoral system).
Livestock production Grazing area (ha, % of total surface area) Estimation of the suitable land for livestock grazing
(pasture and dehesas).
Natural habitat conservation services Natural habitat conservation Protection of natural areas (natural cover, % of natural
cover under legal protection)
Identification of areas with natural cover (terrestrial
habitats and wetlands). Delimitation of legally pro-
tected natural areas.
Ecological connectivity: Effective Mesh Size (ha) Estimation of the Effective Mesh Size index for terres-
trial natural habitats.
Cultural and public use-related services Public recreational use Urban and periurban parks, (number, ha, ha/10.000
inhabitants)
Mapping of urban and periurban parks.
Non-motorized mobility Elements that afford non-motorized mobility (km,
km/10.000 inhabitants)
Mapping of cycle routes, greenways and vías pecuarias
(traditional cattle ways).
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
J.Santiago-Ramos, C.Hurtado-Rodríguez
1 3
Metropolitan ecosystems can play a significant role in climate change miti-
gation, acting as CO2 sinks and partially compensating for the emissions gen-
erated in the urban environment. In the Malaga-Marbella and Cordoba areas,
the presence of extensive forest masses offers great potential for the provision
of this service. Both metropolitan areas present a very significant carbon stor-
age capacity: 24.30t/ha and 20.39t/ha, respectively. As can be seen on the maps
(Fig. 2), in Cordoba and, above all, in Malaga-Marbella, this function is more
intense in sectors located to the north of the main urban nuclei, corresponding to
areas of mountainous woodland. In the case of Seville, carbon sequestration pre-
sents a more even distribution, due to the presence of large masses of olive trees
and mosaics of woody crops that extend throughout the metropolitan landscape.
Although these agricultural land-uses have a lower carbon storage index per hec-
tare than forest masses, their widespread distribution makes them a highly valu-
able resource for helping to mitigate climate change and represent a high total
value for carbon storage in the area.
Urban and periurban vegetation also contributes to improving air quality in cit-
ies, whether by capturing polluting compounds, dissolving hydro soluble pollutants
on the damp leaf surfaces or intercepting particles suspended in the air. The pres-
ence of vegetation also has a notable effect on the temperature and helps to lessen
the urban heat island effect. To estimate the contribution made to these benefits by
open urban and periurban spaces, the land cover classes with vegetation have been
identified within a radius of 3km around the urban areas—with urban areas under
25ha omitted to avoid distortion in the results. The spaces delimited in this way
have been reclassified according to their leaf area index (LAI), which can be consid-
ered a synthetic indicator of their contribution to this service. Figure3 shows how
the zones that contribute to improving the air quality in the Malaga-Marbella area
are distributed in a marked linear pattern and form an unbroken sector of forest and
agricultural spaces along the perimeter of the coastal conurbation. In the case of
the Cordoba area, the distribution of this service is more polycentric, although the
natural spaces associated with the Guadalquivir River—the central axis of the urban
agglomeration—clearly stand out. In the case of Seville, the provision of this ser-
vice is markedly polycentric, in keeping with the complex urban system defined by
a powerful central urban nucleus and a broad set of secondary nuclei. The variation
in the LAI value (see Table3) depends on the predominance of areas of woodland,
crops, green zones and other land-uses in these periurban belts. The Seville area
stands out for a greater average LAI value (2.09), largely due to the contribution of
farmland –the majority component of the periurban landscape.
As regards hydrological regulation, the analysis focuses on soil sealing as the
main disturbance factor in the urban environment. The replacement of natural
cover by sealed surfaces reduces soil infiltration capacity and rainwater inter-
ception by plants, leading to a significant increase in surface run-off and diffuse
pollution. According to Arnold and Gibbons (1996) and Paul and Meyer (2008),
when soil sealing exceeds 10% of the surface of a water basin, the impact on
the receiving watercourse starts to become significant. The analysis of sealing
in the study areas has been conducted on the sub-basin scale (Fig.4), in order to
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
1 3
Assessing Ecosystem Services Provision asaSupport for…
identify the sectors in the metropolitan space where greater pressure exists from
artificial sealing.
The results show that there are two sub-basins with sealing scores of over
10% in the Seville area (with percentages of 13.63% and 15.07%) and one in the
Cordoba area (13.19%). The preservation of non-built-up space in these sectors
should be regarded as a priority in the design of the metropolitan green infra-
structure so as to prevent a greater impact on local water systems. The results
reveal that a major part of this regulatory function is provided by periurban crops
and pasture areas, which normally lack solid protection against future urban
growth processes.
Provisioning Services
The provisioning services analysed in this study are forest, crop and livestock pro-
duction. Table4 gives the values obtained for the indicators related to these func-
tions. As can be seen, over half of the territory in two of the analysed metropolitan
areas -Cordoba and Seville- is dedicated to crops. In both cases, agricultural uses are
the main components of the metropolitan landscape matrix, both in terms of surface
area and spatial continuity. The case of Seville stands out, both in terms of total
surface area and in relative surface area used for crop-growing (366,518ha, 63.7%
of metropolitan territory). In this case, the periurban cultivated spaces form a kind
of agricultural belt that surrounds the central city and, in practice, acts as an equiva-
lent to a green belt in the absence of other less anthropised open spaces (see Fig.5).
The important presence of irrigated crops (e.g., rice crops, fruit trees, and exten-
sive crops like cotton or sunflower) in the areas of Seville and Cordoba should also
be highlighted. The economic potential of irrigation crops makes them more resist-
ant to the expansion of urban land uses than non-irrigated crops (e.g., cereal, olive
trees), so they can play an important role in containing urban sprawl and conurba-
tion processes –one of the main functions assigned to green belts.
As for forestry provision, total forest areas in the metropolitan territory have been
quantified, as well as plantation forests and the dehesas—a type of traditional agro-
silvo-pastoral system (see Table4 and Fig.6). The three metropolitan areas analysed
show a substantial amount of woodland cover, with values over 30,000ha. As far as
forest plantations are concerned, the case of Malaga-Marbella is particularly note-
worthy, as this kind of economic exploitation occupies over 9000ha. Meanwhile,
the presence of the dehesas can be highlighted in the Cordoba area, where they
occupy over 7% of the metropolitan territory, and in terms of total surface area in
the Seville area, with over 27,000ha of cover. The multifunctional nature of dehesas
and their outstanding economic, environmental and heritage value make them espe-
cially suitable as potential components of a green infrastructure.
As regards pasture provision (Fig.7), the areas of Seville and Malaga-Mar-
bella stand out in terms of net surface area with potential for livestock feeding
(e.g., cattle, pig, sheep, goat), over 50,000ha in both cases. Due to their close
connections with natural spaces of greater ecological value, many pasture areas
have great potential for being included in a metropolitan green infrastructure,
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
J.Santiago-Ramos, C.Hurtado-Rodríguez
1 3
Table 3 Indicators for regulating services
Prepared by authors with data from SIOSE
Service Indicator Metropolitan area
Cordoba Malaga-Marbella Sevilla
Climate change mitigation C storage (t) 4,297,535 6,144,591 8,655,253
C storage (t/ha) 20.39 24.30 15.04
Air quality and urban climate
improvement
Leaf Area Index 1.94 1.84 2.09
Hydrological regulation Pervious surface area (ha and % of total surface area) 197,112 (93.51%) 239,260 (94.63%) 504,029 (93.04%)
Number of sub-basins above the threshold of 10% impervi-
ous surface
1 (of 9) 0 (of 4) 2 (of 14)
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
1 3
Assessing Ecosystem Services Provision asaSupport for…
especially as areas to strengthen ecological connectivity. One example of this is
the pastures in the western sector of the Seville metropolitan area, which, as can
be observed in Fig.7, contribute to the creation of a north-south green corridor
along one of the urban agglomeration’s major rivers.
Habitat Conservation Services
One of the main objectives of a metropolitan green infrastructure is to preserve nat-
ural areas from processes of land-use change. In global terms, the indicators show a
more than notable presence of natural habitats in the three metropolitan areas (see
Table5 and Fig.8). Malaga-Marbella stands out especially, with over half of its ter-
ritory occupied by natural cover. Legally-protected natural areas are also abundant
in the three case studies, reflecting the significant ecological value of the land which
makes up the metropolitan landscape. In this respect, the Cordoba area stands out,
with 70% of its habitat currently affected by different categories of protection.
Metropolitan natural habitats must also be addressed in terms of their spatial
configuration. Habitat fragmentation is particularly detrimental, as this process
reduces the capacity of natural areas to maintain biodiversity (Hedrick, 2001) and is
Fig. 2 Carbon storage (t/ha) in metropolitan ecosystems in the areas of Cordoba, Malaga-Marbella and
Sevilla. Source: Prepared by authors with data from SIOSE
Fig. 3 Estimation of urban and periurban leaf area index in the areas of Cordoba, Malaga-Marbella and
Sevilla. Source: Prepared by authors with data from SIOSE
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
J.Santiago-Ramos, C.Hurtado-Rodríguez
1 3
currently considered one of the main threats to nature conservation in Europe (EEA,
2011b). A landscape metric –Effective Mesh Size (Jaeger, 2000; EEA, 2011b)- has
been applied to analyse the spatial continuity of habitats. This index shows the like-
lihood of two random points in a landscape being connected in a single patch of
natural cover. The lower the Effective Mesh Size, the greater the level of fragmenta-
tion of the natural cover, and vice-versa. The results reveal that the lowest degree
of fragmentation is found in the Malaga-Marbella area –with an Effective Mesh
Size value of 48.732ha-. In this case, as well as in Cordoba, the natural habitat is
shaped by large, continuous patches mainly corresponding to mountain forest areas
(see Fig.8). The case of Seville contrasts with the other two, as it is divided into
the northern and western sectors of the metropolitan area with quite extensive and
continuous natural patches, whereas in the centre, the east and the south of the urban
agglomeration the natural patches are highly fragmented by agricultural and artifi-
cial land-uses.
Cultural andPublic‑Use Related Services
The analysis of public-recreational use has focused on two types of elements: urban
parks (located within the urban area and with a fundamentally municipal reach)
and periurban parks (larger in size, with a higher degree of naturalness and a supra-
municipal reach, and situated more often on the periphery of the urban area). Table6
shows the values obtained in the analysis. A significant disparity can be seen in the
amount of surface area devoted to these two elements in the three areas under study.
The Seville area stands out for the number of urban parks (41) and for the total sur-
face area that they occupy (over 860ha), which is in keeping with the larger size and
population of this urban agglomeration. Seville also has the highest park surface area per
number of inhabitants (5.39ha/10,000 inhabitants). The presence of urban parks is sig-
nificantly lower in Cordoba, with 2.34ha/10,000 inhabitants, and Malaga-Marbella, with
only 1.19ha/10,000 inhabitants. As far as periurban parks are concerned, the Cordoba
area stands out, with three areas of this type occupying a total of 900ha. In contrast, the
Seville area has three periurban parks covering a total area of 128ha, while there is only
Fig. 4 Percentage of pervious surface area in metropolitan sub-basins in the areas of Cordoba, Malaga-
Marbella and Sevilla. Source: Prepared by authors with data from SIOSE
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
1 3
Assessing Ecosystem Services Provision asaSupport for…
Table 4 Indicators for provisioning services
Prepared by authors with data from SIOSE
Service Indicator Metropolitan areas
Cordoba Malaga-Marbella Sevilla
Total forest cover (ha and % of total surface area) 30,010
(14.1%)
30,160
(11.9%)
42,611
(7.4%)
Forest plantations (ha and % of total surface area) 1938
(0.9%)
9027
(3.6%)
3404
(0.6%)
Dehesas (ha and % of total surface area) 15,285
(7.3%)
7634
(3.0%)
27,480
(4.8%)
Crop production Total cultivated area (ha and % of total surface area) 125,911 (59.7%) 73,545
(29.1%)
366,518
(63.7%)
Non-irrigated crops (ha and % of total surface area) 84,996
(40.3%)
57,644
(22.8%)
208,273
(36.2%)
Irrigated crops (ha and % of total surface area) 40,915
(19.4%)
15,901
(6.3%)
158,245
(27.5%)
Livestock production Grazing area (ha and % of total surface area) 27,816
(13.2%)
53,875
(21.3%)
66,623
(11.6%)
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
J.Santiago-Ramos, C.Hurtado-Rodríguez
1 3
one in the Malaga-Marbella area, occupying 11ha. Finally, in the case of Cordoba, the
greater extension of natural areas near the centre of the urban agglomeration can act –to
some extent- as compensation for the smaller number of urban parks.
In the category of non-motorized mobility, the presence of cycle routes, sign-
posted greenways and paths, and vias pecuarias—a network of historic cattle trails,
currently used as public, legally-protected country lanes—has been mapped (see
Fig.9) and quantified.
Fig. 5 Irrigated and non-irrigated agriculture in the areas of Cordoba, Malaga-Marbella and Sevilla.
Source: Prepared by authors with data from SIOSE
Fig. 6 Woodland cover (%) and forest plantations in the areas of Cordoba, Malaga-Marbella and Sevilla.
Source: Prepared by authors with data from SIOSE
Fig. 7 Pastureland cover (%) in the areas of Cordoba, Malaga-Marbella and Sevilla. Source: Prepared by
authors with data from SIOSE
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
1 3
Assessing Ecosystem Services Provision asaSupport for…
The most extensive cycle routes are found in Seville (294km) and Malaga-Mar-
bella (102 km), whereas the Cordoba area has the greatest length per inhabitant
(1.82km/10,000 inhabitants). Seville stands out as the only area with a highly-devel-
oped cycle lane network within the city’s urban fabric that offers a fully-functional
option for mobility, although it is patchy and poorly articulated in the periurban sec-
tor (see Fig.9). On the other hand, the presence of greenways and paths is especially
significant in the Cordoba area, with a total of 76km and 2km/10,000 inhabitants.
The location of these elements and their adaptation for public use enables citizens to
travel between parks, natural areas and periurban rural spaces.
The results reveal that cattle trails are far more common than the other con-
necting elements which makes them a resource with enormous potential for green
infrastructure planning, especially since that are perfectly articulated into a net-
work. These lanes and tracks cover large expanses in the areas of Seville (2402km,
14.93km/10,000 inhabitants) and Cordoba (926km, 24.36km/10,000 inhabitants).
Discussion
The results obtained for the three case studies confirm that the metropolitan landscape can
provide a wide range of environmental functions and benefits. However, the areas differ
significantly in the size, distribution and spatial configuration of the landscape compo-
nents that provide those services. Consequently, from a functional perspective, the optimal
configuration of a metropolitan green infrastructure would be very different for each of
the three urban agglomerations. It is therefore recommendable to avoid the application of
pre-established and rigid planning models—for example, based on the green belt or the
urban-rural gradient concepts—, and to adapt green infrastructure design to the specific
potential and characteristics of each metropolitan area. The optimal planning choices can
also vary depending on the services that are considered a priority in each case.
Despite these inherent differences, the three case studies share some relevant fea-
tures in common that must be discussed, as they can provide a deeper understanding
of the environmental functionality of metropolitan landscapes. In this case, two main
implications can be drawn from the results. First, the analysis suggests that planning
initiatives should assign a more important role to the landscape matrix and, in par-
ticular, to the multifunctional agricultural areas on the urban fringe. Second, further
thought should be given to how to improve the connectivity of open spaces in metro-
politan areas in terms of public use and habitat conservation.
The Functional Role oftheMetropolitan Landscape Matrix
Our research reveals that the provision of regulating services in the three areas studied is of
a spatially continuous nature. None of the services analysed can be assigned in particular
to any one (or more) specific types of open space. On the contrary, they depend on differ-
ent cross factors, such as the type and abundance of vegetation or the degree of soil seal-
ing. In consequence, there is a wide range of components of the land-use mosaic that can
act as a source for these services. In the absence of more natural areas, human-dominated
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
J.Santiago-Ramos, C.Hurtado-Rodríguez
1 3
Table 5 Indicators for habitat conservation services
Prepared by authors with data from SIOSE and the Andalusian Department of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Sustainable Development
Service Indicator Metropolitan area
Cordoba Malaga-Marbella Sevilla
Conservation of natural habitats Natural cover (ha) 72,263 144,952 157,848
Natural cover (ha/10,000 inhabitants) 1901.17 1088.95 981.21
Natural cover (% of metropolitan surface area) 34.3% 57.3% 27.4%
Natural cover under legal protection (ha) 50,378 66,476 56,036
Natural cover under legal protection (ha/10,000 inhabitants) 1325.40 499.40 348.33
Natural cover under legal protection (% of total natural cover) 69.7% 45.9% 35.5%
Ecological connectivity: Effective Mesh Size (ha) 15,822 48,732 25,773
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
1 3
Assessing Ecosystem Services Provision asaSupport for…
or semi-natural ecosystems such as agricultural areas—i.e., the majority component of
the landscape matrix in the cases of Seville and Cordoba—can be the main local source
of regulating functions. Here, green infrastructure planning should give those productive
spaces a leading role in order to boost their environmental functions. Additionally, if pro-
vision services are also to be considered a relevant part of the functionality provided by
metropolitan green infrastructures, it seems clear that planners and policy makers need
to explore new planning possibilities beyond the traditional nodes and corridors model,
which is mostly comprised of parks, natural areas and connecting elements.
Urban agriculture is still largely neglected in urban and regional planning, and
planners often view periurban croplands primarily as areas for future urban develop-
ment (Lovell, 2010). Justifying the conservation of periurban croplands based solely
on their production functions can be a challenge, so it is necessary to assess urban
agriculture from a multifunctional landscape framework (Lovell & Johnston, 2009).
In other words, in the longer term, metropolitan agriculture will only be sustainable if
its potential to provide different ecosystem services is fully recognized and developed
(Van Veenhuizen, 2006). In this context, greater social recognition should be given
to the multiple functions and benefits that agriculture can provide to the urban public
(Zasada, 2011). Our study suggests that ecosystem services mapping can be a useful
tool to present these functions to policy makers, planners and citizens in general.
Over recent years, numerous initiatives have been developed around the world to
preserve agriculture in the proximity of urban centres, either through agri-environmen-
tal schemes (Darly & Torre, 2013), promotion of local food networks (Paül & McKen-
zie, 2013) or the development of land use zoning strategies (Akimowicz etal., 2016).
The creation of agricultural parks—i.e., a large, legally protected periurban area where
multifunctional agricultural activities are carried out—may represent one of the most
suitable options for preserving multifunctional farmland within the green infrastruc-
ture framework. The best known example of this is the Milan South Agricultural Park,
which extends over 47,000ha, more than three quarters of which is farmed land, and
stands out as a model for other international initiatives (Corrado, 2013). In Spain, the
agricultural parks of Sabadell and Baix Llobregat in Catalonia, and the initiatives car-
ried out in the Guadalhorce Valley and the Granada Plain in Andalusia are also prime
examples of how to contain urban sprawl and preserve the periurban agricultural
Fig. 8 Natural cover and protected natural spaces in the areas of Cordoba, Malaga-Marbella and Sevilla.
Source: Prepared by authors with data from SIOSE and the Andalusian Department of Agriculture, live-
stock, fisheries and sustainable development
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
J.Santiago-Ramos, C.Hurtado-Rodríguez
1 3
Table 6 Indicators for cultural services
Prepared by authors with data from SIOSE and the Institute of Statistics and Cartography of Andalusia
Service Indicator Metropolitan area
Cordoba Malaga-Marbella Sevilla
Public-recreational use Urban parks No. of parks 5 17 41
Total surface area (ha) 88.88 158.02 867.89
Density (ha/10,000 inhabitants) 2.34 1.19 5.39
Periurban parks No. of parks 3 1 3
Total surface area (ha) 941 11 128
Density (ha/10,000 inhabitants) 24.76 0.08 0.80
Non-motorised mobility Length (km) Cycle routes 69 102 264
Greenways and paths 76 72 99
Cattle trails 926 687 2402
Length by inhabitant
(km/10,000 inhabitants)
Cycle routes 1.82 0.77 1.64
Greenways and paths 2.00 0.54 0.62
Cattle trails 24.36 5.16 14.93
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
1 3
Assessing Ecosystem Services Provision asaSupport for…
landscape (Yacamán & Zazo, 2015). Integrating this new type of park as a key func-
tional and structural component of metropolitan green infrastructures seems to be a
highly recommended strategy to preserve the diverse functions of periurban farmland.
Finally, it should be noted that agricultural areas are not only a source of benefi-
cial environmental functions, but also of different ecosystem dis-services—e.g., loss of
natural habitats, nutrient runoff, or damage caused by pesticides—(Zhang etal., 2007).
Additionally, C emissions can overcome C sequestration due to intensive management
practices. The adoption of ecologically-sound management strategies is essential to
minimize those dis-services, as well as to guarantee the compatibility of farmland pro-
duction with the provision of regulating services. Again, the integration of these areas
in a metropolitan green infrastructure can facilitate the implementation of agri-environ-
mental measures and lead to a more positive net balance at the functional level.
Fig. 9 Areas and connectors for public recreation. Source: Prepared by authors with data from SIOSE
and the Institute of Statistics and Cartography of Andalusia
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
J.Santiago-Ramos, C.Hurtado-Rodríguez
1 3
Building Functional Networks: Public Use andEcological Connectivity
Unlike regulating and provisioning services, functions like the protection of natu-
ral habitats and the promotion of public use activities are necessarily linked to the
design of cohesive open space networks and functional corridors. With regard to
public use, it is essential to promote the interconnection of the recreational spaces
present in the metropolitan territory, so that they are made accessible to the urban
public by non-motorized means. At the same time, effective ecological corridors
should be set up to connect the fragmented natural areas and allow the movement
of species throughout the highly anthropised metropolitan landscape. In those cases
in which the degree of habitat fragmentation is higher—e.g., the central, south and
east sectors of the metropolitan area of Seville—the creation of ecological networks
must be considered a priority objective of green infrastructure design.
In the context of urban and metropolitan planning in Spain, it is usual for green
corridors to be designed with a dual functionality: as elements of ecological con-
nection and as a platform for non-motorized travel (Cruz et al., 2017). However,
the effectiveness of conservation networks and corridors can be diminished by this
dual approach. Our analysis suggests that ecological and public use networks should
be conceived as two different, complementary systems, since they are articulated
around different nodal elements and have specific spatial requirements.
On one hand, the planning of public use connectors should prioritize the articulation of
recreational spaces into a coherent and accessible network. Our study shows that there is a
clear need to advance in this regard in the three areas under study, also revealing that each
of the areas has a particular range of resources available for building up a public, non-
motorized travel network. The role of public cattle trails—the traditional vias pecuarias
should be highlighted in this regard. Despite the irregular state of conservation of these
trails and, in many cases, issues with private owners occupying the public realm, a great
number of these country lanes and tracks are currently used by citizens for country walks
or cycle rides and for moving from one green space to another. Together with the exist-
ing cycle routes and greenways, the reconditioning of part of this cattle trail network can
help to significantly enhance non-motorized mobility in the metropolitan areas. However,
many of these public lanes are extremely narrow and intensively used, which, in some
sections, can hamper their compatibility with ecological connectivity functions.
On the other hand, the effectiveness of ecological corridors depends on their capacity
to connect isolated natural habitat patches—not necessarily accessible to the public—and
counteract the effect of habitat fragmentation. Ecological corridors and networks are often
created on the basis of pre-established spatial assumptions and the oversimplification of
complex ecological concepts (Boitani etal., 2007; Battisti, 2013). The creation of new eco-
logical connectors should be a context-specific strategy and be based on local-scale ecologi-
cal analysis, in order to guarantee that the configuration of corridors responds to the require-
ments of fragmentation-sensitive species (Gippoliti & Battisti, 2017). The assessment of
habitat fragmentation carried out in this study can provide a reasonable starting point for
this objective, as it allows to detect those areas where the lack of connectivity is especially
significant and where, as a result, a detailed, species-focused analysis would be advisable.
Lastly, it is also important to emphasise the role of the landscape matrix in comple-
menting the functionality of ecological corridors (Battisti, 2013). The matrix acts as
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
1 3
Assessing Ecosystem Services Provision asaSupport for…
an important driver of ecological dynamics in heterogeneous landscapes such as those
analysed here (Watling etal., 2011) and can influence species dispersal and migration
rates between natural fragments (Jules & Shahani, 2003). Consequently, the landscape
matrix should be given a more prominent role in habitat conservation strategies (Debin-
ski, 2006; Watling etal., 2011). In this respect, integrating matrix components—such as
periurban cultivated areas—into the metropolitan green infrastructure seems to be highly
advisable, as it could facilitate the application of agri-environmental measures designed
to enhance landscape connectivity and permeability.
Conclusions
The methodology applied in this study has been demonstrated to provide a useful support
for planning practice. The spatially-explicit approach to ecosystem services analysis ena-
bles the key functional components of the metropolitan territory to be identified, and pro-
vides valuable information for decision-making in the green infrastructure design process.
It can facilitate an ex-ante evaluation of different land-use planning options for the provi-
sion of ecosystem services and help to identify strategic areas for future, more detailed
analysis, prior to the formulation of specific planning proposals. Maps of the ecosystem
services can also help foster public participation in the planning process as a tool to dis-
cuss the complex environmental and social functionality of the metropolitan landscape.
The results also allow us to make some general reflections on metropolitan green
infrastructure planning. Firstly, the study confirms the suitability of the metropolitan
scale for the articulation of truly multifunctional open space systems. This scale allows
the urban and periurban green spaces to be integrated into the same planning proposal
with large, peripheral rural and natural areas, thus combining their recreational, environ-
mental and nature protection functions from a unitary, comprehensive perspective. Like-
wise, it makes it possible to complement the functionality of the most common com-
ponents of open space systems—e.g., parks, nature reserves—with that linked to other,
often overlooked territorial resources present in the metropolitan landscape matrix.
In this context, the comprehensive approach of the methodology has allowed us to
verify the important role that the matrix can play as a functional component of the met-
ropolitan green infrastructure. The results show that, taken as a whole, extensive culti-
vation areas, forest plantations and pasture areas –which do not usually stand out as rel-
evant nodes in urban or metropolitan green space systems– represent a highly valuable
source of ecosystem services. These productive spaces can strengthen or complement
many of the benefits provided by other more natural spaces, improving the resilience
of the urban system through the reinforcement of regulating and provisioning services.
In settings such as those analysed here, it would be recommendable to revise the con-
cept of green infrastructure in order to fully integrate farmland as one of the green sys-
tem’s main structural and functional components. This reconceptualization involves going
beyond the creation of a network of interconnected discrete open spaces and assigning the
metropolitan landscape matrix a greater functional role in planning strategies. At the same
time, it is necessary to advance in the study of the ecosystem services and dis-services
trade-offs linked to periurban agriculture, in order to apply suitable management strategies.
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
J.Santiago-Ramos, C.Hurtado-Rodríguez
1 3
Appendix
Table 7 Land cover classes (SIOSE), ecosystem categories and C storage
Prepared by authors with data from Olson etal. (1985), Gibbs (2006)
GLC2000 Land cover class Olson etal. (1985) ecosystem category SIOSE Land cover class Revised Medium Carbon
Values (metric tons C/ha)
Tree Cover, Broadleaved Evergreen Temperate Broad-leaved Forest Broadleaf evergreen tree cover 90
Tree Cover, Broadleaved Deciduous, Closed Temperate Broad-leaved Forest Broadleaf deciduous tree cover 90
Tree Cover, Broadleaved Deciduous, Open
Tree Cover, Needleleaved Evergreen Other Conifer Conifer tree cover 130
Tree Cover, Needleleaved Deciduous
Mosaic: Tree cover/other natural vegetation Fields/Woods Mosaics Urban green areas and street trees 30
Shrub cover, closed-open, evergreen Grassland or Shrubland complex Meadows
Grassland
Shrubland
9
Shrub cover, closed-open, deciduous
Herbaceous cover, closed-open,
Sparse Herbaceous or sparse shrub cover
Regularly flooded shrub and/or herbaceous cover
Cultivated and managed areas Non-irrigated croplands Herbaceous crops 8
Mosaic: Cropland/Tree cover Secondary Forest/field mosaics Woody crops 40
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
1 3
Assessing Ecosystem Services Provision asaSupport for…
Table 8 Land cover classes (SIOSE) and average values of Leaf Area Index (LAI)
Prepared by authors with data from Oplustilova et al. (1995), Scurlock et al. (2001), URGE Team
(2004),Santiago-Ramos (2010)
SIOSE Land cover class LAI Source
Urban green areas and street trees 2.75 Oplustilova etal. (1995); URGE Team (2004)
Rice crops 3.00 Oplustilova etal. (1995); URGE Team (2004)
Other irrigated crops 3.00 Oplustilova etal. (1995); URGE Team (2004)
Citric fruit trees 5.00 Oplustilova etal. (1995); URGE Team (2004)
Non-citric fruit trees 5.00 Oplustilova etal. (1995); URGE Team (2004)
Vineyards 1.50 Santiago-Ramos (2010)
Olive groves 1.10 Santiago-Ramos (2010)
Other woody crops 5.00 Oplustilova etal. (1995); URGE Team (2004)
Meadows 5.00 Oplustilova etal. (1995); URGE Team (2004)
Grassland 1.70 Scurlock etal. (2001)
Broadleaf deciduous tree cover (plantations) 8.70 Scurlock etal. (2001)
Broadleaf deciduous tree cover 5.00 Scurlock etal. (2001)
Broadleaf evergreen tree cover (plantations) 8.70 Scurlock etal. (2001)
Broadleaf evergreen tree cover 5.70 Scurlock etal. (2001)
Conifer tree cover 5.50 Scurlock etal. (2001)
Shrubland 2.00 Scurlock etal. (2001)
Table7
Table8
Funding Open Access funding provided thanks to the CRUE-CSIC agreement with Springer Nature.
Funding was provided by Universidad Pablo de Olavide. This work was supported by the Center for
Andalusian Studies [project reference PRY071/17]; and the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation
through the National R&D Plan 2017–2020 [project reference RTI2018–095325-B-I00].
Data Availability Not applicable.
Code Availability Not applicable.
Declarations
Conflicts of Interest/Competing Interests The authors have no conflicts of interest to declare that are rel-
evant to the content of this article.
Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License,
which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as
you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Com-
mons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article
are included in the article’s Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the
material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons licence and your intended use is
not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission
directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit http:// creat iveco mmons. org/ licen
ses/ by/4. 0/.
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
J.Santiago-Ramos, C.Hurtado-Rodríguez
1 3
References
Ahern, J. (1995). Greenways as a planning strategy. Landscape and Urban Planning, 33(1–3), 131–155.
https:// doi. org/ 10. 1016/ 0169- 2046(95) 02039-V
Akimowicz, M., Cummings, H., & Landman, K. (2016). Green lights in the greenbelt? A qualitative
analysis of farm investment decision-making in peri-urban southern Ontario. Land Use Policy,
55, 24–36. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1016/j. landu sepol. 2016. 03. 024
Arnold, C. L., &Gibbons, C. J. (1996). Impervious surface coverage: The emergence of a key envi-
ronmental indicator. Journal of the American Planning Association,62(2), 243–258. https:// doi.
org/ 10. 1080/ 01944 36960 89756 88
Batlle, E. (2011). El jardín de la metrópoli. Del paisaje romántico al espacio libre para una ciudad
sostenible. Gustavo Gili.
Battisti, C. (2013). Ecological network planning - from paradigms to design and back: A cautionary note.
Journal of Land Use Science, 8(2), 215–223. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1080/ 17474 23X. 2011. 639098
Benedict, M., & McMahon, E. (2002). Green infrastructure: Smart conservation for the 21st century.
Sprawl Watch Clearinghouse.
Boitani, L., Falcucci, A., Maiorano, L., & Rondinini, C. (2007). Ecological networks as conceptual
frameworks or operational tools in conservation. Conservation Biology, 21(6), 1414–1422. https://
doi. org/ 10. 1111/j. 1523- 1739. 2007. 00828.x
Chiesura, A. (2004). The role of urban parks for the sustainable city. Landscape and Urban Planning,
68(1), 129–138. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1016/j. landu rbplan. 2003. 08. 003
Corrado, A. (2013). Alternative food systems and Peri-urban agriculture in Milan, Italy. Habitat y Socie-
dad, 6, 65–83. https:// doi. org/ 10. 12795/ Habit atySo ciedad. 2013. i6. 04
Cruz, J., De Oliveira, G., & Santiago-Ramos, J. (2017). El espacio libre en la planificación territorial:
análisis comparado de las áreas metropolitanas en España. Ciudad y Territorio Estudios Territori-
ales,49(193), 401–416. Retrieved 15 April, 2021, fromhttps:// recyt. fecyt. es/ index. php/ CyTET/ artic
le/ view/ 76569
Darly, S., & Torre, A. (2013). Conflicts over farmland uses and the dynamics of “ Agri-urban” localities
in the greater Paris region: An empirical analysis based on daily regional press and field interviews.
Land Use Policy, 33(August 2017), 90–99. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1016/j. landu sepol. 2012. 12. 014
De Groot, R., & Hein, L. (2007). Concept and valuation of landscape functions at different scales. In
Mander, Ü., Wiggering, H., & Helming, K. (Eds.) Multifunctional land use. Meeting future demands
for landscape goods and services (pp. 15–36). Springer.
Debinski, D. M. (2006). Forest fragmentation and matrix effects: The matrix does matter. Journal of Bio-
geography, 33(10), 1791–1792. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1111/j. 1365- 2699. 2006. 01596.x
Elmqvist, T., Fragkias, M., Goodness, J., Güneralp, B., Marcotullio, P. J., McDonald, R. I., Parnell, S.,
Schewenius, M., Sendstad, M., Seto, K. C., & Wilkinson, C. (Eds.). (2013). Urbanization, biodiver-
sity and ecosystem services: Challenges and opportunities. Springer.
European Commission (2013). Green Infrastructure (GI) - Enhancing Europe’s Natural Capital. Com-
munication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic
and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions. [COM (2013) 249 final]. European Com-
mission. Retrieved April 29, 2021, from https:// eur- lex. europa. eu/ legal- conte nt/ EN/ TXT/? uri=
celex% 3A520 13DC0 249
European Environment Agency (2011a). Green infrastructure and territorial cohesion. The concept of
green infrastructure and its integration into policies using monitoring systems. European Environ-
ment Agency. Retrieved April 29, 2021, from https:// www. eea. europa. eu/ publi catio ns/ green- infra
struc ture- and- terri torial- cohes ion
European Environment Agency (2011b) Landscape fragmentation in Europe. European Environment
Agency. Retrieved April 29, 2021, from https:// www. eea. europa. eu/ publi catio ns/ lands cape- fragm
entat ion- in- europe
European Environment Agency (2014) Spatial analysis of green infrastructure in Europe. European
Environment Agency. Retrieved April 29, 2021, from https:// www. eea. europa. eu/ publi catio ns/ spati
al- analy sis- of- green- infra struc ture
Farrugia, S., Hudson, M. D., & Mcculloch, L. (2013). An evaluation of flood control and urban cooling
ecosystem services delivered by urban green infrastructure. International Journal of Biodiversity
Science, Ecosystem Services & Management, 9(2), 136–145. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1080/ 21513 732.
2013. 782342
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
1 3
Assessing Ecosystem Services Provision asaSupport for…
Feria, J. M., & Martínez, L. (2015). La definición y delimitación del sistema metropolitano español: per-
manencias y cambios entre 2001 y 2011. Ciudad y Territorio. Estudios Territoriales, 1, 9–24.
Feria-Toribio, J. M., & Santiago-Ramos, J. (2017). Naturaleza y ciudad. Perspectivas para la ordenación
de la infraestructura verde en los planes territoriales metropolitanos en España. Boletín de la Aso-
ciación Española de Geografía,74, 117–141.https:// doi. org/ 10. 21138/ bage. 2447
Feria-Toribio, J. M., & Santiago-Ramos, J. (2019). Landscape spatial analysis for sustainable land use
planning: A two-scale approach to the Seville Metropolitan area.Journal of Planning Education
and Research.https:// doi. org/ 10. 1177/ 07394 56X19 845439
Forman, R. T. T. (2008). Urban regions. Ecology and planning beyond the City. Cambridge University
Press.
Fusaro, L., Salvatori, E., Mereu, S., Marando, F., Scassellati, E., Abbate, G., & Manes, F. (2015). Urban
and peri-urban forests in the metropolitan area of Rome: Ecophysiological response of Quercus ilex
L. in two green infrastructures in an ecosystem services perspective. Urban Forestry and Urban
Greening, 14(4), 1147–1156. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1016/j. ufug. 2015. 10. 013
Gibbs, H. K. (2006).Olson’s major world ecosystem complexes ranked by carbon in live vegetation: an
updated database using the GLC2000 land cover product (NDP-017b, a2006 update of the origi-
nal 1985 and 2001 data file). Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center (CDIAC), Oak Ridge
National Laboratory (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States), ESS-DIVE repository, https:// doi. org/
10. 3334/ CDIAC/ LUE. NDP017. 2006
Gippoliti, S., & Battisti, C. (2017). More cool than tool: Equivoques, conceptual traps and weaknesses
of ecological networks in environmental planning and conservation. Land Use Policy, 68(April),
686–691. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1016/j. landu sepol. 2017. 08. 001
Hall, P. (1998). Cities in civilization: Culture, technology, and urban order. Pantheon Books.
Heckert, M., & Rosan, C. D. (2016). Developing a green infrastructure equity index to promote equity
planning. Urban Forestry and Urban Greening, 19, 263–270. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1016/j. ufug. 2015.
12. 011
Hedrick, P. W. (2001). Conservation genetics: Where are we now? Trends in Ecology & Evolution, 16,
629–636.
Jaeger, J. A. G. (2000). Landscape division, splitting index, and effective mesh size: New measures of
landscape fragmentation. Landscape Ecology, 15(2), 115–130. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1023/A: 10081
29329 289
Jia, Z., Tang, S., Luo, W., Li, S., & Zhou, M. (2016). Small scale green infrastructure design to meet dif-
ferent urban hydrological criteria. Journal of Environmental Management, 171, 92–100. https:// doi.
org/ 10. 1016/j. jenvm an. 2016. 01. 016
Jongman, R. H. G., Külvik, M., & Kristiansen, I. (2004). European ecological networks and green-
ways. Landscape and Urban Planning, 68(2–3), 305–319. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1016/ S0169- 2046(03)
00163-4
Jules, E. S., & Shahani, P. (2003). A broader ecological context to habitat fragmentation: Why matrix
habitat is more important than we thought. Journal of Vegetation Science, 14(3), 459–464. https://
doi. org/ 10. 1111/j. 1654- 1103. 2003. tb021 72.x
Kim, G., Miller, P. A., & Nowak, D. J. (2015). Assessing urban vacant land ecosystem services: Urban
vacant land as green infrastructure in the City of Roanoke, Virginia. Urban Forestry & Urban
Greening, 14, 519–526. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1016/j. ufug. 2015. 05. 003
Lewellyn, C., Lyons, C. E., Traver, R. G., & Wadzuk, B. M. (2016). Evaluation of seasonal and large
storm runoff volume capture of an infiltration green infrastructure system. Journal of Hydrologic
Engineering, 21(1), 04015047. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1061/ (asce) he. 1943- 5584. 00012 57
Lovell, S. T. (2010). Multifunctional urban agriculture for sustainable land use planning in the United
States. Sustainability, 2(8), 2499–2522. https:// doi. org/ 10. 3390/ su208 2499
Lovell, S. T., & Johnston, D. M. (2009). Creating multifunctional landscapes: How can the field of ecol-
ogy inform the design of the landscape? Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, 7(4), 212–220.
https:// doi. org/ 10. 1890/ 070178
Maes, J., Paracchini, M. l., & Zulian, G. (2011). A European assessment of the provision of ecosystem
services. Towards an atlas of ecosystem services. .
Magoni, M., & Colucci, A. (2017). Protection of Peri-urban open spaces and food-system strategies. The
case of Parco delle Risaie in Milan. Planning Practice and Research, 32(1), 40–54. https:// doi. org/
10. 1080/ 02697 459. 2015. 10282 51
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
J.Santiago-Ramos, C.Hurtado-Rodríguez
1 3
Manes, F., Silli, V., Salvatori, E., Incerti, G., Galante, G., Fusaro, L., & Perrino, C. (2014). Urban ecosys-
tem services: Tree diversity and stability of PM10 removal in the metropolitan area of Rome. Annali
Di Botanica, 4(0), 19–26. https:// doi. org/ 10. 4462/ annbo trm- 11746
Momm-Schult, S. I., Piper, J., Denaldi, R., Freitas, S. R., de Lourdes Pereira Fonseca, M., & de Oliveira,
V. E. (2013). Integration of urban and environmental policies in the metropolitan area of São Paulo
and in greater London: The value of establishing and protecting green open spaces. International
Journal of Urban Sustainable Development, 5(1), 89–104. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1080/ 19463 138. 2013.
777671
National Geographic Institute of Spain (2015). Spanish Land Occupancy Information System (SIOSE).
Technical report SIOSE 2011. National Geographic Institute of Spain. Retrieved April 29, 2021,
from https:// www. siose. es/ SIOSE theme- theme/ docum entos/ pdf/ Doc_ tec_ SIOSE 2011_ v1.1. pdf
Olson, J. S., Watts, J. A., &Allison, L.J. (1985). Major world ecosystem complexes ranked by carbon in
live vegetation: A Database. NDP-017. Carbon Dioxide Information Center, Oak Ridge National
Laboratory. Retrieved April 29, 2021, from https:// cdiac. ess- dive. lbl. gov/ epubs/ ndp/ ndp017/
ndp017_ 1985. html
Opdam, P., Steingröver, E., & Van Rooij, S. (2006). Ecological networks: A spatial concept for multi-
actor planning of sustainable landscapes. Landscape and Urban Planning, 75(3–4), 322–332.
https:// doi. org/ 10. 1016/j. landu rbplan. 2005. 02. 015
Oplustilova, M., Dvorak, V., Marek, M. V., & Vyskot, I. (1995). Leaf area index, its significance and
methods of estimation. Lesnictvi, 41(8), 353–359.
Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (2012). Redefining “Urban”. A new Way to
Measure Metropolitan Areas. OECD. Retrieved April 29, 2021, from http:// www. oecd. org/ regio nal/
redefi ning urban aneww aytom easur emetr opoli tanar eas. htm
Paül, V., & McKenzie, F. H. (2013). Peri-urban farmland conservation and development of alternative
food networks: Insights from a case-study area in metropolitan Barcelona (Catalonia, Spain). Land
Use Policy, 30(1), 94–105. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1016/j. landu sepol. 2012. 02. 009
Paul, J. P., & Meyer, J. L. (2008). Streams in the urban landscape. In J. M. Marzluff, E. Shulenberger, W.
Endlicher, M. Alberti, G. Bradley, C. Ryan, C. Zumbrunnen, & U. Simon (Eds.), Urban ecology. An
international perspective on the interaction between humans and nature (pp. 207–231). Springer.
Pedrazzini, L., Pedrotti, C. (2011). Periurban landscapes: landscape planning guidelines. Regione
Lombardia.
Santiago-Ramos, J. (2015). Áreas metropolitanas andaluzas. Análisis estructural del territorio metro-
politano: espacio libre y espacio construido. Regional Government of Andalusia, Department of
Development, Infrastructure and Planning. Retrieved April 15,2021, from https:// www. aopan daluc
ia. es/ innov acion/ princ ipal. asp? alias=% C1reas_ Metro polit anas
Santiago-Ramos, J. (2010). Ciudad, espacio libre y funcionalidad ecológica. Una aproximación territo-
rial al estudio del medio ambiente en el área metropolitana de Sevilla [Doctoral dissertation, Uni-
versidad Pablo de Olavide, Spain]. TESEO Database. Retrieved April 15, 2021, from https:// www.
educa cion. gob. es/ teseo/ impri mirFi chero Tesis. do? idFic hero= Nx1g9 xNV1tQ% 3D
Scurlock, J. M. O., Asner, G. P., Gower, S. T. (2001). Worldwide Historical Estimates and Bibliography
of Leaf Area Index, 1932–2000. ORNL Technical Memorandum 2001/268. Oak Ridge National Lab-
oratory. Retrieved April 29, 2021, from https:// www. resea rchga te. net/ publi cation/ 23821 646_ World
wide_ Histo rical_ Estim ates_ of_ Leaf_ Area_ Index_ 1932- 2000
Tzoulas, K., Korpela, K., Venn, S., Yli-Pelkonen, V., Kaźmierczak, A., Niemela, J., & James, P. (2007).
Promoting ecosystem and human health in urban areas using green infrastructure: A literature
review. Landscape and Urban Planning, 81(3), 167–178. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1016/j. landu rbplan.
2007. 02. 001
URGE Team (2004). Making greener cities – A practical guide, No. 8/2004. UFZ Centre for Environ-
mental Research.
Van Veenhuizen, R. (Ed.) (2006). Cities Farming for the Future. Urban Agriculture for Green and Pro-
ductive Cities. RUAF Foundation, International Institute of Rural Reconstruction and International
Development Research Centre.
Watling, J. I., Nowakowski, A. J., Donnelly, M. A., & Orrock, J. L. (2011). Meta-analysis reveals the
importance of matrix composition for animals in fragmented habitat. Global Ecology and Biogeog-
raphy, 20(2), 209–217. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1111/j. 1466- 8238. 2010. 00586.x
Wickham, J. D., Riitters, K. H., Wade, T. G., & Vogt, P. (2010). A national assessment of green infra-
structure and change for the conterminous United States using morphological image processing.
Landscape and Urban Planning, 94, 109. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1016/j. landu rbplan. 2009. 10. 003
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
1 3
Assessing Ecosystem Services Provision asaSupport for…
Yacamán, C, & Zazo, A. (Eds.) (2015). El Parque Agrario: una figura de transición hacia nuevos mod-
elos de gobernanza territorial y alimentaria. Heliconia.
Yacamán, C., Ferrer, D., & Mata, R. (2020). Green infrastructure planning in metropolitan regions to
improve the connectivity of agricultural landscapes and food security. Land, 9(11), 414. https:// doi.
org/ 10. 3390/ land9 110414
Zasada, I. (2011). Multifunctional peri-urban agriculture-a review of societal demands and the provision
of goods and services by farming. Land Use Policy, 28(4), 639–648. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1016/j. landu
sepol. 2011. 01. 008
Zhang, S., & Muñoz Ramírez, F. (2019). Assessing and mapping ecosystem services to support urban
green infrastructure: The case of Barcelona, Spain. Cities, 92, 59–70. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1016/j. cit-
ies. 2019. 03. 016
Zhang, W., Ricketts, T. H., Kremen, C., Carney, K., & Swinton, S. M. (2007). Ecosystem services and
dis-services to agriculture. Ecological Economics, 64(2), 253–260. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1016/j. ecole
con. 2007. 02. 024
Zwierzchowska, I., Hof, A., Iojă, I. C., Mueller, C., Poniży, L., Breuste, J., & Mizgajski, A. (2018). Multi-
scale assessment of cultural ecosystem services of parks in central European cities. Urban Forestry
and Urban Greening, 30, 84–97. https:// doi. org/ 10. 1016/j. ufug. 2017. 12. 017
Publisher’s Note Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published
maps and institutional affiliations.
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
Terms and Conditions
Springer Nature journal content, brought to you courtesy of Springer Nature Customer Service Center
GmbH (“Springer Nature”).
Springer Nature supports a reasonable amount of sharing of research papers by authors, subscribers
and authorised users (“Users”), for small-scale personal, non-commercial use provided that all
copyright, trade and service marks and other proprietary notices are maintained. By accessing,
sharing, receiving or otherwise using the Springer Nature journal content you agree to these terms of
use (“Terms”). For these purposes, Springer Nature considers academic use (by researchers and
students) to be non-commercial.
These Terms are supplementary and will apply in addition to any applicable website terms and
conditions, a relevant site licence or a personal subscription. These Terms will prevail over any
conflict or ambiguity with regards to the relevant terms, a site licence or a personal subscription (to
the extent of the conflict or ambiguity only). For Creative Commons-licensed articles, the terms of
the Creative Commons license used will apply.
We collect and use personal data to provide access to the Springer Nature journal content. We may
also use these personal data internally within ResearchGate and Springer Nature and as agreed share
it, in an anonymised way, for purposes of tracking, analysis and reporting. We will not otherwise
disclose your personal data outside the ResearchGate or the Springer Nature group of companies
unless we have your permission as detailed in the Privacy Policy.
While Users may use the Springer Nature journal content for small scale, personal non-commercial
use, it is important to note that Users may not:
use such content for the purpose of providing other users with access on a regular or large scale
basis or as a means to circumvent access control;
use such content where to do so would be considered a criminal or statutory offence in any
jurisdiction, or gives rise to civil liability, or is otherwise unlawful;
falsely or misleadingly imply or suggest endorsement, approval , sponsorship, or association
unless explicitly agreed to by Springer Nature in writing;
use bots or other automated methods to access the content or redirect messages
override any security feature or exclusionary protocol; or
share the content in order to create substitute for Springer Nature products or services or a
systematic database of Springer Nature journal content.
In line with the restriction against commercial use, Springer Nature does not permit the creation of a
product or service that creates revenue, royalties, rent or income from our content or its inclusion as
part of a paid for service or for other commercial gain. Springer Nature journal content cannot be
used for inter-library loans and librarians may not upload Springer Nature journal content on a large
scale into their, or any other, institutional repository.
These terms of use are reviewed regularly and may be amended at any time. Springer Nature is not
obligated to publish any information or content on this website and may remove it or features or
functionality at our sole discretion, at any time with or without notice. Springer Nature may revoke
this licence to you at any time and remove access to any copies of the Springer Nature journal content
which have been saved.
To the fullest extent permitted by law, Springer Nature makes no warranties, representations or
guarantees to Users, either express or implied with respect to the Springer nature journal content and
all parties disclaim and waive any implied warranties or warranties imposed by law, including
merchantability or fitness for any particular purpose.
Please note that these rights do not automatically extend to content, data or other material published
by Springer Nature that may be licensed from third parties.
If you would like to use or distribute our Springer Nature journal content to a wider audience or on a
regular basis or in any other manner not expressly permitted by these Terms, please contact Springer
Nature at
onlineservice@springernature.com
ResearchGate has not been able to resolve any citations for this publication.
Article
Full-text available
Green infrastructure (GI), as a concept and as a tool for environmental land-use planning at various scales, has burst onto the academic, political, and policy-making scenes in the last two decades. This tool, associated with strategic planning, offers integrated solutions for improving the ecological connectivity and urban resilience of open spaces, especially those affected by processes of urban sprawl, the abandonment of agriculture, and the territorial fragmentation of habitats and traditional agricultural landscapes. In spite of the advantages of GI, its design and implementation face a range of challenges and limitations. In this context, this paper has two objectives: Firstly, to address a critical review of recent literature on the subject, which, among other things, highlights the lack of references to the role of peri-urban agriculture in GI planning, and the positive contribution made by peri-urban agriculture to the local food supply and other regulatory and cultural services. Secondly, to propose a methodology to contribute to integrating practical GI planning in metropolitan regions to maximize the activation of traditional agricultural landscapes and the improvement of landscape connectivity in metropolitan regions for the reconnection of rural-urban relationships.
Article
Full-text available
El presente artículo se encuentra disponible, para su consulta y descarga en SAGE Journal (ISSN-e: 1552-6577), a través del siguiente enlace (FULL TEXT): "https://doi.org/10.1177/0739456X19845439" --[RESUMEN]-- Las áreas metropolitanas son sistemas espaciales complejos y dinámicos. Este artículo establece una metodología de análisis espacial adecuada para abordar la complejidad interna del cambio del paisaje metropolitano, y cuyos resultados podrían ser útiles para la toma de decisiones en el contexto de la planificación sostenible del uso del suelo. Se utiliza un enfoque a dos escalas para el análisis de los cambios recientes en el uso del suelo en el área metropolitana de Sevilla (España), siendo la metodología aplicada para estudiar toda el área metropolitana y dos unidades de paisaje diferentes. Se identifican distintos patrones de cambio de paisaje y modelos de crecimiento urbano para las unidades examinadas. Los resultados destacan la conveniencia de un enfoque de planificación de escala múltiple. --[ABSTRACT]--Metropolitan areas are complex, dynamic spatial systems. This paper sets out a spatial analysis methodology suitable to address the internal complexity of metropolitan landscape change and which results could be useful for decision making in the context of sustainable land use planning. A two-scale approach is adopted for the analysis of recent land use changes in the metropolitan area of Seville (Spain), being the methodology applied to both the whole metropolitan area and two different landscape units. Distinct landscape change patterns and urban growth models are identified for the units studied. On the basis of the results, the convenience of a multiscale planning approach is highlighted.
Article
Full-text available
El presente artículo fue publicado en la revista Ciudad y Territorio. Estudios Territoriales (ISSN: 1133-4762). Y se encuentra disponible para su consulta y descarga en Dialnet, a través del siguiente enlace (FULL TEXT): "https://dialnet.unirioja.es/servlet/articulo?codigo=6308755" --[RESUMEN]-- El espacio libre es actualmente reconocido como un subsistema funda- mental para la vertebración territorial de los ámbitos urbanos y metropolitanos, cum- pliendo un amplio espectro de funciones sociales, ambientales, urbanísticas y pai- sajísticas. El presente trabajo aborda su tratamiento en el contexto de la ordenación territorial en España, a través del análisis comparado de doce planes de escala me- tropolitana. El estudio atiende tanto a la concepción y la relevancia otorgada por cada plan a este componente del sistema territorial, como a su composición, su articulación espacial y su funcionalidad. A partir del análisis es posible señalar una tendencia general en la planificación a dotar de un mayor peso a la dimensión ambiental del espacio libre, así como a reconocer su naturaleza multifuncional y reforzar la interco- nexión física y funcional entre los elementos que lo integran. El estudio pone de ma- nifiesto la ausencia de acuerdo en la definición del concepto, así como, en concordan- cia con ello, las diferencias entre una visión más urbanística del espacio libre, como espacio de uso público y funciones recreativas, y una aproximación más territorial en la que prevalecen las funciones productivas, ambientales y paisajísticas. --[PALABRAS CLAVE]--Áreas metropolitanas, ordenación del territorio, espacio libre y sostenibilidad urbana.
Article
Full-text available
El presente artículo se encuentra disponible, para su consulta y descarga en el repositorio de la revista BAGE (ISSN-e: 2605-3322), a través del siguiente enlace (FULL TEXT): "https://doi.org/10.21138/bage.2447"--[RESUMEN]-- La infraestructura verde se está asentando en los últimos años como una herramienta clave para la planificación del espacio libre metropolitano desde una perspectiva estratégica y multifuncional. Ante la gran diversidad de aproximaciones teóricas y aplicadas a este concepto que coexisten en la actualidad, el presente trabajo plantea como objetivos abordar una revisión crítica del mismo y explorar sus posibilidades de implementación a través la planificación territorial a escala metropolitana, para lo cual se realiza un análisis comparado de los planes de Barcelona, Bilbao y Sevilla.---[PALABRAS CLAVE]-- Infraestructura verde, Áreas metropolitanas, Ordenación del Territorio. --[ABSTRACT]-- In recent years, green infrastructure has become a key tool for planning metropolitan natural areas and environmental features from a strategic and multifunctional perspective. Given the great diversity of theoretical and applied approaches currently being adopted for the analysis and design of green infrastructures, this paper addresses a critical review of this concept and explores its potential implementation through metropolitan-scale spatial plans. To this end, the article presents a comparative analysis of the three main Spanish metropolitan plans-Barcelona, Bilbao and Seville.
Article
Full-text available
El presente artículo se encuentra disponible, para su consulta y descarga en el repositorio de la revista Ciudad y Territorio. Estudios Territoriales (ISSN: 1133-4762), a través del siguiente enlace (FULL TEXT): "https://recyt.fecyt.es/index.php/CyTET/article/view/76461". --[RESUMEN]-- El presente artículo aborda el análisis del sistema metropolitano español en el periodo 2001-2011 en lo que se refiere a su definición, delimitación y dinámicas básicas. Para afrontar esa tarea, la investigación se centra en un ejercicio de delimitación de las áreas metropolitanas españolas a partir de los datos censales de 2011 sobre movilidad residencia-trabajo. El ejercicio de delimitación está basado en una metodología robusta, plenamente contrastada en la experiencia comparada internacional, y que ya fue aplicada a los datos del censo de 2001, lo que permite el análisis comparativo de los resultados obtenidos entre ambas fechas de referencia. En este artículo, el análisis comparativo se limita a evaluar los cambios habidos en la composición del sistema metropolitano español como conjunto y en dos dimensiones básicas asociadas de sus componentes, una de carácter territorial y otra demográfica. Los resultados muestran, en coherencia con su carácter estructural, una notable estabilidad del sistema metropolitano español como conjunto, acompañado a su vez por una fortísima dinámica demográfica. Si se desciende a un nivel singularizado, el comportamiento no es compresible uniforme, siendo las diferencias atribuibles más que a una lógica de jerarquía en el sistema a factores de naturaleza territorial. En ese sentido, son las áreas metropolitanas del litoral mediterráneo e insular las que presentan un mayor dinamismo y expansión territorial, respondiendo además en muchos casos a unos procesos de urbanización masivos y de características singulares que obligan a repensar la definición de lo metropolitano y sus variables para delimitarlo.--[ABSTRACT]--This paper addresses analysis of Spain’s metropolitan system over the 2001-2011 period with regard to its definition, delimitation and basic dynamics. To address this task, the research focuses on an exercise to delimit the country’s metropolitan system according to the 2011 census data on commuting between home and work. This delimitation exercise is based on a robust methodology, fully proven by comparative international experience and previously applied to the 2001 census data, enabling the results obtained between the two reference dates to be compared. In this paper, comparative analysis is limited to assessing the changes that have occurred in the make-up of the Spanish metropolitan system as a whole two associated basic dimensions of its components, one of which is territorial in nature and the other demographic. The results show, as is consistent with its structural character, notable stability of the Spanish metropolitan system as a whole, accompanied in turn by very strong demographic dynamics. Down at an individual level, behaviour is not uniform, with the differences being attributable more to territory-related factors than to any logic of hierarchy. In this regard, the metropolitan areas on the Mediterranean coast and Spain’s islands present more dynamic characteristics and territorial expansion, in many cases also corresponding to process of massive urban development and special characteristics that force us to adjust our thinking about what “metropolitan” means and the variables for delimiting it.
Article
Full-text available
The survival of farms requires innovative adaptation and investment to take advantage of the characteristics of the peri-urban environment. In Ontario, Canada, the Provincial Government passed in 2005 the Greenbelt Act that delimits Ontario’s Greenbelt—an area of 1.8 million acres where land is protected from development around the metropolitan region of the Greater Golden Horseshoe. This paper presents research on farm-level analysis of farmers’ investment decision-making aiming at understanding the impact of Ontario’s Greenbelt on farm investment. We interviewed 21 peri-urban farmers from Southern Ontario and 3 Greenbelt experts. Three sources of data are used to understand farm investment decision-making: farmers’ mental maps, the interview transcriptions, and the information provided by a complementary questionnaire. The results demonstrate that Ontario’s Greenbelt, designed to make agriculture the primary land use in the designated area through farmland preservation, is not sufficient. Protecting a sustainable and efficient agricultural sector requires the presence of the other actors in the whole food chain in order to supply farmers and help them access markets for their products, as well as provide information and technical services.
Article
The ecosystem services approach provides an efficient way to support urban green infrastructure planning. Such an assessment, together with mapping, can effectively produce spatial analyses on a specific scale, helping to maintain multi-functional landscapes and plan urban green infrastructure. In turn, green infrastructure can offer a wide variety of ecosystem services, promoting landscape sustainability. This study develops a methodology for the planning of urban green infrastructure based on an ecosystem services approach that assesses the supply capacity of ecosystem services, and identifies possible spatial characteristic areas for interlinking urban green infrastructure within the study area. More specifically, from a landscape perspective, we use 32 ecosystem services (as X-axis) and different land use types (as Y-axis) to build an ecosystem service assessment matrix. We then take the municipality of Barcelona as an example, using the latter to assess and map ecosystem services within the city through ArcGIS, which shows the spatial distribution characteristics of ecosystem services provision. We identify possible spatial areas-which include ecosystem services provision, barren, and obstructed areas-by overlapping the ecosystem services assessment maps. Ultimately, the results provide a reference for urban green infrastructure planning by recognizing priority protected areas, new construction areas, potential areas, and renewal areas.
Article
Cultural ecosystem services (CES) provided by urban parks are complex phenomena and the diversity of user perspectives and their rather loose linkages to the objective and structural diversity of parks hamper informed planning. Stakeholder involvement in CES assessment has received little systematic attention and only few studies provide examples of the actual application of CES demand indicators or maps in policy and practice. In this context, we focus on physical use of landscapes in different environmental settings, aesthetic and existence ecosystem services. We seek to extend research on cultural urban ecosystem services of parks by 1) assessing their demand and flows as reflected in visitor perception and behaviors, 2) using accessibility as metrics that can be included in multi-scale (city and neighborhood) indicators that characterize distribution of urban green spaces’ benefits in cities, and finally 3) identifying and understanding similarities and dissimilarities by a cross-city Central European approach. The cross-city comparative study in Central Europe reveals striking similarities. Respondents visit parks mainly to relax and rest as well as for pleasure and social activities. While parks tend to meet these demands well, the most pronounced mismatches are in the field of educational potential. The ecosystem service capacities of parks have different strengths in attracting visitors and in some cases this effect can be stronger than simple inconvenience in accessibility and distance. We add to the literature by explicitly involving park visitors as stakeholders in the assessment of cultural ecosystem services’ delivery as mirrored in park visitor surveys. We propose a method that translates human needs, behaviors and perception into the CES approach. The indicator-based approach developed here supports understanding patterns in park use, cultural ecosystem services and their meaning at the site scale that can inform resilience planning at the district and city-wide scales.
Article
The paper critically examines the equivoques, conceptual traps and weaknesses of the recent 'ecological network' paradigm, invocated as a cool environmental planning tool to the aim to mitigate the effect of habitat fragmentation on biodiversity. We highlight as: (i) there is a semantic ambiguity deriving from the languages used in this interdisciplinary arena; (ii) these plans will be considered a true tool for biodiversity conservation when they will adopt a logic of problem solving and the standards requested in project cycle management (clear objectives, decision-making approach, appropriate monitoring and indicators, adaptive management); (iii) planners should follow a costs/benefits analysis comparing different scenarios and verifying that the 'connectivity' option effectively work better; (iv) each ecological network should be considered as a context-specific strategy where connectivity is only a simplified and schematic key of interpretation; (v) planners should carried out a local selection of fragmentation-sensitive targets that may not correspond with the species of conservation concern included in global or national red lists.