The idea of a Green Network was conceived in our region by some visionary strategic planners who were considering the essential parts of an economically successful Glasgow City Region.
They recognised that a key component of that success was a high quality environment in the form of connected multi-functional greenspace - a ‘Green Network’.
The Green Network would link urban and rural areas and be transformational in terms of its vision, scale and commitment to action.
The Green Network concept was first included in the Glasgow & the Clyde Valley Structure Plan in 2000, and further developed and spatially represented in the GCV 2006 Structure Plan.
This was the first time the concept was introduced to audiences to help them understand that the Green Network pervades the urban environment and links to regional rural assets.
The GCV Green Network Partnership have been at the forefront of Green Network thinking since 2007, leading with the development of guidance, analytical tools and greenspace initiatives.
We have also been instrumental in facilitating the development of major green network delivery projects (e.g. the Seven Lochs Wetland Park).
In addition we have developed understanding about the role of green infrastructure in development (e.g. Maidenhill Development Framework) and the important contribution of urban green infrastructure to the delivery of the Central Scotland Green Network (‘Costing’ and ‘Resourcing the CSGN’ studies).
The Partnership is developing a spatial representation of the strategic Green Network spanning the City Region, which we call the 'Green Network Blueprint’.
The Blueprint sets out how the Green Network should allow people to move around and between their communities via off-road paths and greenspaces and identifies where these connections currently exist but also where there are gaps.
The Blueprint will allow partners to ensure that the pieces of the jigsaw which exist are protected and of a good quality and to investigate ways of delivering the missing pieces.
The Partnership has identified 16 Strategic Delivery Areas across the City Region through an analysis of seven Green Network related datasets.
The analysis identified strategically important locations where there are good opportunities for the Green Network could deliver against recognised Green Network benefits:
- improvements in physical health and mental well-being
- climate change adaptation measures
- improved access to open space
- improved habitat connectivity
The Strategic Delivery Areas are our priority areas for delivery and we are working with our partners to develop mechanisms for that delivery
I have no doubt that the GCV Green Network will continue to thrive in coming years. This is essential if we are to deliver real change in the quality of people’s lives, especially those most disadvantaged in our communities.
Vincent Goodstadt, Green Network Visionary and former GCV Structure Plan Manager