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Parks and Green Space

Our greenspace is not just a luxury, it’s an essential part of living in the city, providing countless benefits to health and well-being. We have some amazing parks and public spaces in Paddington Ward, but they need to be protected. In our changing suburbs, we need to ensure everyone has good access to green space, and encourage greenery wherever we can – enhancing our verges, and providing shade and shelter over our footpaths. The Greens and I will fight to protect our urban bushland and wildlife, and defend Barrambin / Victoria Park for community use.

  • Greenspace includes forests, bushland, parks, water bodies, recreational and sports grounds.
  • We need to protect our natural habitat more than ever given we are in a climate, ecological and biodiversity crisis.
  • We need to reduce the urban heat island effect which is caused by cities replacing the natural environment with high concentration of concrete, asphalt, and other hard surfaces that often absorb and hold heat.
  • Greenspace is critical in absorbing water runoff that reduces flooding.
  • Including more greenspace in our neighbourhoods improves mental and physical health and well-being.
  • Loss of biodiversity disrupts ecological functioning and undermines the ability of ecosystems to support humankind.

Greenspaces play a pivotal role in the urban landscape, contributing to the physical, mental, and social well-being of city dwellers. These patches of nature, encompassing parks, gardens, forests, and even small green pockets, play a multifaceted role in enhancing the quality of urban life. The importance of greenspace in urban areas is underscored by its ability to mitigate several challenges associated with rapid urbanisation.

First and foremost, greenspaces provide a breath of fresh air amidst the urban jungle. They act as natural filters, absorbing pollutants and replenishing the air with oxygen, thereby contributing to improved air quality and reducing respiratory ailments. Moreover, these spaces provide a respite from the fast-paced urban life, offering tranquil environments for relaxation, recreation, and reflection. The positive effects on mental health are profound, as spending time in greenspaces has been linked to reduced stress, anxiety, and depression. In essence, greenspaces become outdoor sanctuaries where individuals can disconnect from their digital devices and reconnect with nature.

However, as urban areas expand, greenspaces often find themselves threatened by development pressures. The importance of protecting these oases of green cannot be overstated. Conservation efforts must focus on maintaining a balance between sustainable urban development and the preservation of greenspaces. Encouraging urban planning that incorporates greenspaces, rather than obliterating them, ensures that future generations can continue to benefit from these natural havens.

The significance of greenspaces in urban areas extends beyond their aesthetic value. They act as integral components of the urban ecosystem, fostering physical health, mental well-being, and community interaction. To safeguard these invaluable assets, it is imperative for urban planners, policymakers, and citizens alike champion the preservation and expansion of greenspaces amidst urban development. The harmony between urban growth and greenspace conservation is key to creating livable, vibrant, and sustainable cities for current and future generations.

You can find more information about the work the Greens have done to protect Barrambin/Victoria Park in this newsletter from Stephen Bates, and in this submission that Stephen Bates and I made to the local government in relation to the site.