Trees Of Green…Red Houses, Too


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Dr Gerald Mills, of UCD’s School of Geography, writes:

A common phrase that conveys affluence in Dublin is ‘leafy suburb’, which describes parts of the city that are relatively wealthy and endowed with luxuriant vegetation. Does, the phrase have any basis in fact?

I have plotted the tree canopy cover of Dublin alongside a map showing the price paid for residential property sold in Dublin during 2015.

The latter information was retrieved from the Property Price Register that provides the address and the price; it does not tell you the size of the dwelling or whether it is a house or an apartment or even whether the property has a number of dwellings.

There were over 15,000 properties sold with Dublin addresses in 2015; Google Earth Pro was used to locate many (about 66%) these properties in geographic coordinates. This sample of properties is shown here with each property colour-coded according to its sale value.

I chose to divide the data into quantiles as price values are positively skewed; the greenest properties fall into the top 20% and the reddest fall into the bottom 20% in terms of price.

The patterns for canopy cover and property value show a strong correspondence; overall, it is true to say that the ‘leafiest’ suburbs are also the most valuable from the perspective of property value.

UCD School of Geography (Facebook)

Previously: Streets Full Of Trees

Thanks Reppy

25 thoughts on “Trees Of Green…Red Houses, Too

    1. The Old Boy

      “Where we have our evening dinners,
      Where we never hear of Shinners,
      And even those who can’t afford it have a car.”

    2. classter

      Interesting since Rathgar is not that leafy.

      You could always walk to t he leafier suburbs nearby, I suppose.

  1. Dan

    Trees also help slow drivers down, reduce temperatures and, as the report states, raise house prices significantly. Check out Jeff Speck’s excellent book, Walkable Cities, for more on that. Would be great to see large-scale planting of trees throughout Dublin.

      1. Weedless

        Ban cars from the majority of the city. Reduce the road sizes to allow for bikes. Use the new space for trees.

        1. Polaroid Fluid

          basically handover over the running of the city to the Germans or the Swedish, can you imagine paddy civil servant there trying to hack 21st century city planning? or trying to sell it bovine materialistic city dwellers? Kicking and screaming all the way

          1. classter

            ‘basically handover over the running of the city to the Germans or the Swedish, can you imagine paddy civil servant there trying to hack 21st century city planning? ‘

            This attitude makes it so hard to get anything done well in ireland.

            You are the problem, Polaroid Fluid. You.

  2. Panty Christ

    When the apes take over and we are their poo flinging slaves nature will take over and consume the concrete

  3. Cian

    I’d love to see a map of the trees that were planted too. There are many areas of the city where lots of trees were planted but then these were all broken by the (local) scumbags.

    Unless there are roaming gangs of tree haters that go into other people’s neighbourhoods and vandalise their trees.

  4. Boba Fettucine

    66% of the houses’ locations we could automatically generate using Google. So we, er, ignored the other 34% because we were too lazy to do it manually or find another workaround.

    Good work Academics, good work. I think you deserve a sabbatical.

    1. Martin Heavy-Guy

      It was done for a Facebook post, not a PhD thesis.

      I suppose you’ve already rounded up the other 34% in your own free time, to save them the trouble?

  5. Max Bialystock

    Is there a good argument against planting mostly edible nut and/or fruit species. Wouldn’t it be lovely to be able to pick fresh apples/plums/hazelnuts, etc. while walking through town?

    1. Caroline

      Probably they require more maintenance effort (pruning to shape, protecting from pests etc.) if you actually want them to crop. Then there’s the potential cherry-picker litigation, Joe.

      1. Max Bialystock

        I thought (after posting) that it may have to do with extra detritus on the streets. People slipping on rotten fruit, etc. Although, it hasn’t stopped them planting Horse Chestnut and the like.

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