Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Community and Regional Planning


Community and Regional Planning


Community and Regional Planning; Transportation

First Advisor

Alenka Poplin

Second Advisor

Jing Dong


A significant aspect of quality of life in a city is access to parklands and experiences in natural environments. They offer venues for physical activity, provide recreational opportunities and generate meaningful places. Access to a public park is subject to individual's perception regarding the park along with the attributes of the physical environment. Park planning authorities commonly focus on spatial distribution and quality of the physical environment during assessing park accessibility. This research takes an attempt to identify the spatial locations lacking park services, significant indicators affecting park accessibility and individual’s emotional connection to the park. The intention is to demonstrate a more complete accessibility analysis which might facilitate the planners to rethink the way of park planning. This study conducted the accessibility analysis of the case study of the park system in Ames, Iowa. Connectivity and network-based buffer analysis are performed to identify the residential zones require park services. Different statistical analyses such as frequency distribution and multiple regression are applied to investigate the factors significant for park accessibility. The results indicate that ‘proximity’, ‘improved and safe road quality’ and ‘personal connection to park’ are three critical indicators for predicting overall park accessibility. This research also aimed to address the contribution of the emotions on the park preference and accessibility. The results illustrate that students of Ames visit their most preferred public park to enjoy a ‘peaceful’ and ‘refreshing’ environment. The output of the thesis could facilitate the planners and other associated professionals additional tools to take measure for increasing park utilization.

Copyright Owner

Shoaib Mahmud



File Format


File Size

85 pages