A green sky vision set by national urban greening initiative

Greener Spaces Better Places – Australians largest network of green space advocates is the new name for 202020 Vision.

Greener Spaces Better Places’ mission is to ensure that as our urban places grow, so do our green spaces in Australia’s towns, suburbs and cities, and in doing so, make Australia’s urban areas the greenest in the world.

The program will continue to share knowledge and best practice advice on urban greening while providing tools for communities to plan and implement urban green spaces into their policies and projects.

Yet as 2020 approaches, Australia’s urban areas are facing big challenges and
opportunities. Hort Innovation chief executive, Matt Brand said the program’s continued
priority is to build more and better urban green spaces across the country.

“The program will work to ensure that as cities grow, so do green spaces; and that they are
grown with quality, best practice and address key challenges cities face. To promote health
and wellbeing in individuals, build resilient communities and support a sustainable society,
the program will work holistically to champion the benefits of green space in relation to urban
liveability – not just for the fortunate few, but for everyone,” Mr Brand said.

“We will also support our network transition to water sensitive cities. This will require broad
community acceptance of changes in policy, practice, and technology. Additionally, we will
support the nursery industry in understanding species survival rates, because we know
many aspects related to climate change are also likely to affect urban forestry and
productivity.”

Professor Tonia Gray from Western Sydney University and Greener Spaces Better Places
advocate believes city planning must include a greater emphasis and inclusion of nature.
“We are hardwired to be connected to nature – this isn’t anything new, it’s just newly
important, in our increasingly urban lives,” she said.

“Greener Spaces Better Places, alongside the network, has an integral role to play in
upscaling the importance of nature and reinforcing the message that green is good. We
know when done right, urban greening leads to vibrant, creative, beautiful and desirable
-places to live.”

Looking back, what’s been achieved?
Since launch in 2013 – with an aspirational goal to increase and improve Australia’s urban
green space by 20% by 2020. The goal was developed as an aspirational vision and has
made significant inroads since inception in terms of research, advocacy policy and plants in
the ground. Specifically the Vision:
● Created Australia’s first benchmark measurement of urban green space by
measuring green space in all 139 of Australian urban and peri-urban LGAs (in
partnership with UTS)
● Trained over 600 people from 140 councils how to put an urban forestry growth
strategy in place
● Brought together 7000+ individuals and organisations to form the country’s biggest
network of green space advocates

What do you see being the key challenges and opportunities for urban greening in Australia?

Email us at hello@ greenerspacesbetterplaces.com.au with your thoughts.

ENDS

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