The concept of biophilic urban planning has inspired neighborhood greening projects in many older urban communities in the USA and beyond. The strengths (e.g., environmental management, biodiversity, heat island mitigation) and challenges (e.g., greenwashing, green gentrification) of such projects are well-documented. Additional research on the relationship between these projects and various social factors (e.g., public perceptions, feelings, and mental health and well-being) is necessary to better understand how people adapt to said projects while struggling to navigate other more pressing socioeconomic issues, especially in communities facing environmental injustice and health inequity. In this article, we focus on one aspect of biophilic urban planning-green stormwater infrastructure (GSI) (e.g., rain gardens, bio-swales, pervious pavements, and wildflower meadows)-in Waterfront South, a post-industrial neighborhood in Camden, NJ, USA, where residents have faced environmental injustices for decades. Our qualitative analysis of in-depth semi-structured interviews of sixteen residents offered a thorough insight into their perceptions and emotions regarding different types of urban GSI projects. Residents acknowledge the many benefits that GSI offers to combat the neighborhood's social and environmental injustices, but they are cautious about the possibility of some projects prompting new issues and concerns within the community. Our findings reveal potential implications in GSI planning, research, and practice in this neighborhood and similar urban places elsewhere that have yet to undergo gentrification.
International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Meenar, M., Heckert, M., & Adlakha, D. (2022). "Green Enough Ain't Good Enough:" Public Perceptions and Emotions Related to Green Infrastructure in Environmental Justice Communities. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 19(3), 1-17. http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19031448