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Index for estimation of trees landscaping value in urban environment.

In urban environments, conflicts between trees and sidewalks, buildings and aerial public service lines often occur, leading to tree eradications, because this is generally the simplest and the cheapest solution. With this procedure, important trees for the local communities can be destroyed, instead of being protected by law because of their value in the landscape. Here, the objective was to formulate and to test an index for evaluating the landscaping value of trees in urban environments, the so called Index of Landscaping Value (ILV), based on the Index of Relative Importance already used. The ILV is proposed
for estimating with numeric values the importance of individual urban trees in the context of the landscaping heritage of the town. Twenty trees located in the center of Jaboticabal, São Paulo, Brazil, were evaluated in the test, using the formula: ILV = [(4 SV + (2 CV) + (3 LV) + (5 BV) + EV + (10 HCV)] / Abr, where: ILV= Index of Landscape Value; SV = species value (rarity, origin, growth speed, availability and adaptability); CV = condition value (general sanitary condition); LV = localization value (adequacy to the place where the tree grows); BV = biometric value (related to tree dimensions); EV = ecological value (ecological benefits); HCV = historic and cultural values; Abr = relative abundance (number of individuals of the species in relation to the total number of individuals of all tree species in the town). Comparing the results of the ILV calculation with the initial empiric observations, it was concluded that this index could be used efficiently as an evaluating method of the landscaping value of urban trees aiming at their eventual inclusion as trees protected by law.

ISSN: 2447-536X

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