The use of recreational urban parks in Johannesburg: a phenomenological study of place attachment in Thokoza Park in Moroka, Soweto
Urban recreational parks are an essential component of cities as they contribute to sustainable cities, people’s lifestyle and well-being in general. It is therefore important to understand their level of use and how place attachment can be enhanced in order to increase utilization. This study evaluates the relationship between place attachment and level of use of Thokoza Park in Moroka, Soweto. Phenomenological research design was used where direct observation of use was complimented with interviews, survey questionnaires and photographs were used as tools to collect data. The study indicates that various aspects of Thokoza Park contribute to increased level of use and increased level of place attachment. These include the amenities provided for users, the level of safety, maintenance and accessibility. The key finding is that there is a circular relationship between level of use and place attachment. Key recommendation is that it is important to understand the social dynamics of the adjoining communities as this would also influence the use or non-use of urban recreational parks.
A RESEARCH REPORT SUBMITTED TO THE FACULTY OF SCIENCE, UNIVERSITY OF THE WITWATERSRAND, JOHANNESBURG, IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF SCIENCE. NOVEMBER 2015, JOHANNESBURG