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inhabitant’s life. In many cases, the literature also includes findings of association between the surrounding environment and health (Jackson et al. 2013; Dzhambov et al. 2014; Nowak et al. 2018). In comparison with natural forests, urban forests are probably exposed to the most human impact both directly by recreational activities and indirectly by activities in nearby urbanized spaces.
Recreation in a forest as a specific usage form of a natural biological resource represents a way of use of a forest that is mainly indirect as compared to direct primary use (timber harvesting and collection of other material forest products). Recreational forest use itself has been the subject of numerous investigations in Europe for a few decades (Konijnendijk et al. 2005; Miller 1997; Simpson et al. 2008; Bell et al. 2007; Zeng 2018). The existing literature extensively documents the perception of forests, the recreational needs and demands of the population as well as how these have changed over time (Bell et al. 2007). In this context, urban forests are identiﬁed as being all the more crucial for the provision of adequate outdoor recreation activities (Konijnendijk et al. 2005, Chapter 1). Increased interest in the assessment of recreational functions of forests is due to several significant reasons (Bell et al. 2007; Vries and Goossen 2002; Rysin and Levandovská 2018). Under conditions of high density of population and excessive urbanization, urban forests are considered to be vital social valves providing people with rest from intense labour, stress, tension, smoke, noise, and pollution of modern cities (Simpson et al. 2008; Eskandari and Ghadikolaei 2013; Cetin et al. 2018; Jim and Chen 2006). Arrangement and development of recreational forest areas in towns are the most efficient, and at the same time the least expensive, social measure to ensure proper rest (Cetin et al. 2018, Jim and Chen 2006, Eskandari and Ghadikolaei 2013). However, there are contradictions between the needs and wishes of forest visitors on the one hand, and the abilities of forest biotope to fulfil their requests on the other. It follows that there is a social need for high-quality green spaces in cities (Bell et al. 2007; Vries and Goossen 2002).
Previous studies on applied assessing methods of the recreational potential differ significantly from each other. The main difference between Vyskot et al. (2003) and e.g. Pouwels et al. (2008), Eskandari and Ghadikolaei (2013), Cetin et al. (2018), Maple et al. (2010), Jim and Chen (2006), Vries and Goossen (2002) is in the fundamental approach to the question. Vyskot et al. (2003)evaluated the potential functional ability of a forest and the actual functional effectiveness of forest stands using the method of the “Quantification and evaluation of forest functions” based on the non-utilitarian anthropocentric conception of the relationship between man and the forest which has been based on the idea that forests serve exclusively to man according to his topical demands but on systematization and objectification of forest functions in an ecosystem conception.
This study deals with the assessment of recreational resources of common European urban forest. Further mentioned the methodological approach will include ecological and recreational characteristics, and an evaluation of potential recreation classification in the urban forest will be determined. The urban forest “Horský park” in Bratislava was chosen as a basic study area. The used characteristics (indicators) have been chosen in order to be generally applicable and useable in an urban forest. The authors connect the social aspects of visitors and the biological ability of the forest within the total methodological system. Thus, the question of the recreational potential assessment of urban forests is considered not only from the position of a human consumer, but also as the ability of the forest ecosystem to exist under the pressure of recreational loads - it is the degree of direct influence of holiday-makers (tourism, wild harvest, fishing, etc.), their vehicles, the construction of temporary houses and other structures on the ecosystems or recreational areas. It is expressed through the number of people or man-days per unit area or recreational area for a certain period of time (usually a day or a year). The research tasks were defined as follows (1) Determination of individual indicators important for an urban forest condition and recreation possibility of the forest; (2) Development of an evaluation system of these indicators for urban forest, and (3) Testing of the evaluation system in “Horský park” forest.
Material and Methods
MATERIJALI I METODE
The created methodological approach – Metodološki pristup
The works of Rysin (2003), Rysin et al. (2015a, 2015b) and Ivonin and Samsonov (2011) were the starting point for the development of a methodical approach to assessing the recreational potential of urban forests. The calculation of the coefficients C-forest and C-recreation (coefficient is a quantitative expression of the sum of indicators in comparison with the ideal.) and the determination of limit values for Class recreational volume were evaluated according to these works. Indicators were selected on the basis of literary research of the following works (Kazanskaya et al. 1977; Rysin 2003; Gusev 2004; Němeček et al. 2011; Pińkovskiy et al. 2011; Senov 2006; Schneider et al. 2008).
Case study area – Područje istraživanja
The urban forest “Horský park” was created in 1868 and is located near the city centre of Bratislava (in the Slovak Republic). The area is predominantly built with granites and