More street trees, green walls and plantings along footpaths will be part of a plan to help the City of Sydney green the city, increase habitat for local wildlife, improve air quality and filter stormwater run off.
“Having high-quality open space is very important for the health and happiness of our community,” Lord Mayor Clover Moore said. “We know that trees and other plantings help absorb carbon pollution and help cool our city.
Well landscaped streets also provide more enjoyable spaces for the local community and support local businesses and retailers by making our villages’ attractive destinations.
Our ambition is a 50 per cent increase to the canopy cover provided by trees by the year 2030.”
Under the Green Sydney Plan, the City will encourage the community to get involved by establishing programs that support volunteers, junior rangers and LandCare groups.
The City’s Footpath Gardening Policy has been developed to allow residents and businesses to place a planter box on a public footpath, or establish a garden on a verge or nature strip without a development application, subject to safety and access.
The plan will also focus on promoting biodiversity within the city by creating wildlife corridors and using locally-indigenous plant species. Collaboration with private property owners on options to green new and existing developments, such as green walls and rooftops, will also help improve spaces across Sydney.
Following public exhibition of the Plan, between 5 September and 3 October last year, the City received seven submissions that highlighted 58 issues. The City has reviewed the submissions and adopted recommendations where appropriate.
In the City of Sydney hundreds of years of development have made the local government area the most urbanised in Australia, with little trace of the original ecology.
University of Technology urban ecologist, Dr Jane Tarran, said that increasing urbanisation had meant a steady decline in contact with nature and a loss of connecting with birds and wildlife.
‘Nature and urban forest are critical to human wellbeing,” Dr Tarran said. “They have a restorative power which has profound effects on human behaviour and functioning, providing recovery from mental fatigue and information overload.”
Check out our Greening Sydney Plan.