What a gorgeous street. Photo comes from the Greening Sydney document by City of Sydney Council.

I found the following about the ‘Green Sydney Plan’ on the City of Sydney Council’s Green Villages website – http://bit.ly/OBZsMy  Sydney Council plans to increase the tree canopy cover by a whopping 50% by 2030 as well as create wildlife corridors using locally-indigenous plant species.

They also plan to create more green walls & verge gardens to deal with stormwater runoff as well as collaborate with property owners to create green walls & green roofs. I was sad that green walls & roofs were not included in Marrickville’s newly completed LEP. I myself heard an Architect at a meeting of the Joint Regional Planning Panel answer a question from the panel as to why green features such as walls & roofs was not included in the design. His answer was that the LEP did not require him to look at this, so he didn’t.

This showed me that, for the most part, Architects will not start to incorporate these kinds of green features in their designs until this becomes a requirement (to at least look at incorporating them). With so much development coming our way across Marrickville LGA, I fear that we will have developments approved that are less than what they could be to take us into the next 60 years where the climate is expected to be very different.  Attributes like green walls & green roofs have so many benefits & would definitely help make life easier & cheaper for people residing in them as well as being great for the environment.

City of Sydney Council have developed a Footpath Gardening Policy which will allow “residents & 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 & access.”  Marrickville Council has done the same with verge gardens, but not planter boxes as far as I am aware.

Hopefully businesses will catch on that a pretty frontage created just by installing a planter box filled with greenery or seasonal flowers will pay them back in increased patronage.

The interest in verge gardens by residents is growing with the recognition that the streetscape can benefit from greening & beautification, as well as wasted land being used for growing purposes.  The ‘Sustainable Streets’ initiative in Chippendale is moving at great knots & motivating a lot of people by showing that it can be done & that it is a great way to bring the community together.  I will post an update on their developments soon.

One other thing Sydney Council mentioned was including the community in a range of ways, including ‘junior rangers.’   I’m not sure what this means, but if it means people looking after parks & talking to people about not trashing the place with litter & all the other antisocial behaviour that impacts heavily on other park users & the environment such as what I have been posting about that occurs routinely in Tempe Reserve, then this will be a fantastic initiative.

Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore says, “Having high-quality open space is very important for the health & happiness of our community.  We know that trees & other plantings help absorb carbon pollution & help cool our city. Well landscaped streets also provide more enjoyable spaces for the local community & support local businesses & retailers by making our villages’ attractive destinations.”   She’s got that right.

You can download the Masterplan here. It’s a great document that holds a lot more information than just where they intend to plant trees & is easy to read. – http://www.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/Council/OnExhibition/documents/Plan-Greening_Sydney_PlanDOCUMENT-FinalDraftpre-exhibitionSet2011.PDF

A view of the Sydney Harbour Bridge from behind one of the City of Sydney’s glorious Fig trees. It’s great that Sydney Council has not stopped planting Fig trees as they are such a statement tree, loved by most people & offer habitat & food for urban wildlife. Photo comes from the Greening Sydney document by City of Sydney Council.