Green space is the collective term used to describe all parks, public gardens, playing fields, children”s play areas, woodlands, nature reserves, allotment gardens, linear and other open space. All UK local authorities have to manage their green spaces within increasingly tight financial budgets with many councils contracting out this work to specialist organisations.
Geographic Information Systems (GIS) software is a valuable tool in managing green spaces as it allows bespoke datasets to be overlaid and spatial analysis performed. For example, a council holding all their parks as digital mapping files can use the GIS to sum these areas and then negotiate with maintenance contractors to achieve best value grass cutting.
Lovell Johns and specialist urban design and heritage consultant Pleydell Smithyman have recently been working with North Warwickshire District Council (NWDC) in formulating a new green spaces management strategy. Realising their information was outdated, NWDC commissioned Lovell Johns and Pleydell Smithyman to provide GIS consultancy and a green spaces management road map.
The work consisted of producing over 70 AO MasterMap plots for NWDC to mark up then digitising these marked up areas. Using our own ArcGIS software, Lovell Johns then created a series of datasets which will help the council manage their green spaces.