Many coastal areas around the world are experiencing dramatic landscape changes as a result of increased tourism development and due to the 'sea change phenomenon' - the migration of affluent urbanites to small coastal towns seeking beautiful, natural surroundings. In response to these changes local residents in these places often complain that the distinctive character of their towns and/or individual neighborhoods is being lost or degraded.
This book looks at how changes due to unsympathetic development of the built environment and modification of the natural landscape are perceived to negatively impact on the character of small coastal towns. The book explores the concept of town character, and associated notions of sense of place, genius loci and place identity, as conceptualised by local residents in several coastal town communities along Australia's Great Ocean Road. Findings of a four year study involving over 1800 respondents from these communities are used to explore theoretical and methodological issues associated with the assessment of place character in the context of coastal towns that are experiencing rapid environmental change.
The book will be of interest to planners, environmental designers and scholars in both landscape studies and the relevant social science and planning fields that are interested in the sustainable development of coastal areas. The case studies and associated planning and design strategies, together with the bibliography of selected relevant literature, will provide an invaluable reference for these scholars.
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