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Strategies of Building a Stronger Sense of Community for Sustainable Neighborhoods: Comparing Neighborhood Accessibility with Community Empowerment Programs

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Type: Journal Article
Author: Tsai, Te-l Albert
Journal: Sustainability
Volume: 6
Page(s): 2766-2785
Date: 2014
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10535/9520
Sector: Urban Commons
Region: North America
Subject(s): community
community management
Abstract: "New Urbanist development in the U.S. aims at enhancing a sense of community and seeks to return to the design of early transitional neighborhoods which have pedestrian-oriented environments with retail shops and services within walking distances of housing. Meanwhile, 6000 of Taiwans community associations have been running community empowerment programs supported by the Council for Cultural Affairs that have helped many neighborhoods to rebuild so-called community cohesion. This research attempts to evaluate whether neighborhoods with facilities near housing and shorter travel distances within a neighborhood would promote stronger social interactions and form a better community attachment than neighborhoods that have various opportunities for residents to participate in either formal or informal social gatherings. After interviewing and surveying residents from 19 neighborhoods in Taipeis Beitou District, and correlating the psychological sense of community with inner neighborhoods daily travel distances and numbers of participatory activities held by community organizations under empowerment programs together with frequencies of regular individual visits and casual meetings, statistical evidence yielded that placing public facilities near residential locations is more effective than providing various programs for elevating a sense of community."

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