Expert criticises guides on green infrastructure

A host of guidance reports on green infrastructure from some of the most respected professional groups are flawed, says an expert.

Landscape and green space consultant David Evans said he was frustrated by guidance from the Forestry Commission, Natural England and Landscape Institute.

"All have made policy guidance stressing the importance of green infrastructure. What's frustrated me is that it hasn't been joined up by debates in the green space sector. It hasn't really looked at the long-term funding and management implications," he told last week's GreenSpace conference.

"The main emphasis is placed on planning new green infrastructure in new developments, but can that be sustainably managed in the long term?"

One of the policy documents in question listed essential criteria, such as community engagement, and desirable criteria, such as funding. Evans disagreed with such assumptions.

"I don't think community engagement is essential for all green-space infrastructure but funding is crucial," he said. "You can't plan and design green infrastructure without having the right mechanisms in place for management and long-term running."

Evans said the categorisation threw up problems because no two spaces were alike and a lot of green space was "incidental", such as roadside verges. He went on to say it was unrealistic to expect the community to engage in the management of such areas. They wanted to be engaged in spaces that inspired them.

"You also have to think of long-term sustainability if you are looking to protect the space from future development," he added. "Getting the community to engage is certainly not a cheap option - it takes time, money and resources, and that's at odds with cutting costs at local authorities."


Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next

Horticulture education update - staying on course

Horticulture education update - staying on course

Raised levels of investment in horticulture education and increased student take-up is welcome news for the industry, says Rachel Anderson.

Tree planting guide - three basic rules

Tree planting guide - three basic rules

Choosing the right plant, correct planting procedure and best aftercare are the three basic rules for sucessful tree planting, Sally Drury explains.

Tree planting - what are the benefits of planting trees?

Tree planting - what are the benefits of planting trees?

Mitigating climate change, providing windbreaks and reducing the risk of soil erosion are some of the best reasons for planting trees, says Sally Drury.


Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +
Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs
Horticulture Week Custodian Awards 2017 - the winners!

Find out more about the outstanding parks, gardens and arboricultural projects and teams that became our Custodian Award 2017 winners.

Contracts & Tenders

Products & Kit Resources