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In a world where, by 2050, 70% of the population will be living in cities, a “New Urban Agenda” is considered crucial in order to form more sustainable, inclusive and resilient cities. This means cities which are liveable both from the natural and human-environment points of view and where citizens are involved in the realization and management of an attractive urban environment of high quality. Given the process of urbanization occurring in many towns of the Alpine Region, managers and planners need to know the new order of priorities in needs and values expressed by citizens with regard to urban forests and those in nearby areas. This paper illustrates a case study of the town of Trento, in the north-eastern Italian Alps, a typical medium-sized alpine town which, despite recent urbanization, is still in close connection to woodlands. The research has been carried out by means of a questionnaire aimed at investigating the relationship between citizens and their forests. In particular, the points of investigation were the main functions attributed to the forests and visitors’ preferences of forest features. The results show that urbanization and socio-economic changes, with the introduction of an urban lifestyle, are producing a radical transformation in people’s behaviour and attitudes with regard to forests. A survey of this type may be a useful tool in the hands of planners and managers in order to help shape a sustainable urban development.
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