BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Place attachment is among the most important aspects of the interaction between people and their places, to keep residential environments safe, sustained, and resilient. This study aims to identify the factors that influence the creation and enhancement of place attachment in residential settings, with a focus on physical elements. Given the significance of these factors in architecture and facility programming, the study aims to provide architects and designers with effective strategies for designing and redesigning residential environments. The results of this study on place attachment can be utilized in the architectural facility programming process and design decision-making.
METHODS: This study proposed a theoretical framework in which the relationship between subjective and objective physical and individual characteristics and time were the main components of making sense of place attachment. Using a survey method, the study investigated the significance of place attachment among residents of the 600-unit residential complex in Mashhad, Iran, through a questionnaire divided into three sections. The first section focused on individual characteristics and time spent in the complex, while the second and third sections measured the objective and subjective physical characteristics and the extent of people's attachment to the complex, respectively. The data from 158 participants were analyzed using SPSS and SmartPLS software.
FINDINGS: Results of SPSS analysis showed objective physical characteristics (p<.01, r=.241), as well as the subjective physical characteristics (p<.01, r=.223) and time (p<.01, r=.237), were the most important components affecting place attachment, highlighting the role of physical strategies used in the residential complex for creating and developing this feeling. Considering these physical factors affecting the establishment and enhancement of place attachment emphasizes the role of architects and planners in satisfying this crucial human need which directly affects people's personal and social health.
CONCLUSION: The results revealed time, subjective, and objective physical characteristics are three factors that have a direct impact on place attachment. Objective physical characteristics have a direct impact on place attachment and also indirectly impact it through their effect on subjective physical characteristics. On the other hand, the relationship between individual characteristics and place attachment is indirect, as individual characteristics affect the time spent in a place, and an increase in time spent leads to a stronger place attachment. The findings can be employed extensively in architectural programming in residential environments to improve the quality of life.
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