Temporal changes and local variations in the functions of London's green belt

Marco Amati*, Makoto Yokohari

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    93 Citations (Scopus)


    A green belt is a zone of land around the city where building development is severely restricted. Although London's green belt has a history of being effective in achieving its purposes, recently planners have started debating how it could be reformed. The green belt's reformers propose renewing the green belt's function. However no recent research has shown the current distribution of London's green belt. The aim of this research is to explore which factors influence the functions of London's green belt. We first investigate the history of the green belt's functions. We then analyse the green belt's current functions by grouping local authorities in relation to their green belt policies using cluster analysis. The history of the green belt's establishment reveals the fundamental values that lie behind the green belt's functions. Using cluster analysis we group the local authorities according to whether they use the green belt to: control urban growth, enhance landscape protection, improve the landscape or whether they consider the green belt to be a minor issue. Overall we argue that a new green space planning concept should be implemented that explicitly refers to the green belt's role in restoring landscapes.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)125-142
    Number of pages18
    JournalLandscape and Urban Planning
    Issue number1-2
    Publication statusPublished - 28 Feb 2006


    • Development pressure
    • Green belt
    • Landscape protection
    • Local authorities
    • Local plans
    • Planning reform


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