People, recreational facility and physical activity: New-type urbanization planning for the healthy communities in China

Tingting Chen, Chi Man Hui, Wei Lang, Li Tao

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

93 Citations (Scopus)


However, little is known that residents' access to such services is influenced by the distribution of those recreational facilities on a geographical basis within a city, particularly in China. This study aims to investigate disparities in spatial accessibility and characteristics of users' exercise behaviour. The research also examines the impact of planning adjustment on developing healthy communities and improving people's quality of life in the new-type urbanization era in China. Employing spatial analysis, questionnaire surveys, and in-depth interviews, the analysis of spatial allocation of community recreational facilities and physical recreation activity was conducted by a case study of Haizhu District in Guangzhou, China. The results show that the quantity and service range of existing community recreational facilities are very limited with unequal access, which affect residents' exercise/sport activities. Particularly, residents' needs of daily exercise are hardly satisfied under the existing environment forged by traditional planning. This study suggests that government plays a critical role in provision of community recreational facilities in terms of fiscal investment and management, ultimately shaping the landscape of community. It is evident that planning adjustment for healthy community focuses on not only the equal access to local facilities, but also creating a healthy environment. The findings provide implication for the equitable and rational allocation of community recreational facilities to support the formation of a healthy community, as well as for the improvement of insight implications on people's livability in other Chinese cities.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)12-22
Number of pages11
JournalHabitat International
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2016


  • China
  • Community recreational facility
  • Guangzhou
  • Healthy community
  • Physical exercise
  • Planning adjustment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urban Studies


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