How do city residents use their urban green spaces? Researchers used cell phone GPS data to see how residents of one UK city interacted with their parks, and used their paper to discuss methods for cleaning GPS data for effective analysis.

Read the full paper here.

From the paper:

After cleaning their data, the authors were left with 5,186 valid trips. The median trip length was 190 meters and the median duration 4 minutes 36 seconds; the average Shmapped user made just over one trip per day to a greenspace, with a weekly total duration of nearly an hour and total distance of around 2.5 km. Gender, age, and ethnicity all had a significant effect on the total duration (average trip duration multiplied by trip frequency) of users’ trips to greenspaces: women’s trips were on average 30 percent longer than men, people aged 34 and over made trips 31 percent longer than younger users, and ethnic minority users spent 34 percent less time making trips to greenspace than white users. The authors also found significant demographic effects in terms of total trip distance (average trip distance times trip frequency): women’s trip distance was 29 percent longer than that of men; people aged over 34 traveled 39 percent further than those under 34; and ethnic minority greenspace users traveled 34 percent more distance than white users. Interestingly, people who spent more time outside as a child also traveled 40 percent further than those who spent less time outside.