Disinvestment in many post-industrial cities has led to property abandonment in residential areas, creating vacant lots in the urban fabric. In the inner-city neighborhoods of Boston, Massachusetts (USA), some vacant lots have been transformed into community gardens and parks through the efforts of local neighborhood organizations, while other lots continue to be abandoned and neglected, with successional vegetation recolonizing the sites. This research study focused on evaluating the social and ecological impacts of these urban greening projects. The study used behavioral observation of green space users, as well as interviews with volunteers who helped build and/or maintain these gardens, to understand use patterns and other benefits that local residents derive from these gardens. Other ecological studies, not reported in this presentation, involved sampling of birds and insects. Conducted over two field seasons, the study compared 10 pairs of urban green spaces with nearby vacant lots. The first field season studied an array of urban greening projects, including parks, schoolyards, street improvements, and community gardens, while the second field season focused primarily on parks and community gardens. The results of this study found significantly more use in the community developed green spaces, including both passive use, as well as active use. Neighborhood engagement with these small sites included both entering the site for passive recreation, as well as often talking with neighbors and others on the adjacent sidewalks. Community gardens along with parks with playground structures received the most use compared to other parks and urban greening projects. This pilot study is part of the larger Boston Metropolitan Area Urban Long-term Ecological Research Area (BMA-ULTRA-EX) Project which is an interdisciplinary project developed to study the relationships between urban ecosystem state and structure and the socio-economic and bio-physical drivers of change to these systems.