Recent research helps validate a claim that’s often made purely on common sense or anecdotal evidence.
Question: Does the greening of vacant urban land reduce self-reported poor mental health in community-dwelling adults?
Findings: In this cluster randomized trial of urban greening and mental health, 110 randomly sampled vacant lot clusters were randomly assigned to 3 study groups. Among 342 participants included in the analysis, feeling depressed significantly decreased by 41.5% and self-reported poor mental health showed a reduction of 62.8% for those living near greened vacant lots compared with control participants.
Meaning: The remediation of vacant and dilapidated physical environments, particularly in resource-limited urban settings, can be an important tool for communities to address mental health problems, alongside other patient-level treatments.