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Remember: The Result of Creating Sustainable Parks

Friday, May 7, 2010

The Result of Creating Sustainable Parks

Riparian buffers, No-Mow Zones, Rain Gardens and the like are terms that I have used often in my time as writer of Remember.  I have called for a proper re-naturalization where such a process is possible in our parks and in all places in our park system, a re-vegetation to occur to preserve and sustain the local ecosystem.

I have used the words of legends like Muir and Leopold to help drive my point home and perhaps, the language I have used is too rhetorical and a much simpler and smaller point behind all this exists.

As it turns out, there are many points to be made about a truly sustainable park rather than a manicured plot of land tailor made for recreation.  It turns out, that there are very important things a sustainable park provides for the community. 

The American Planning Association, in tandem with the University of Illinois produced a study concerned with this very topic.  Combining the efforts and work of researchers across the country from a variety of disciplines, the study concluded four key points which I will share below.

1. Time spent in nature immediately adjacent to home helps people to relieve mental fatigue, reducing aggression.

2. Green residential spaces are gathering places where neighbors form social ties that produce stronger, safer neighborhoods.

3. Barren spaces are more frightening to people and are more crime prone than parks landscaped with greenery and open vistas.

4.In order to make the best use of greenery and
open space, it must be positively incorporated into a community's design.”

Food for thought.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is no indication that the current leadership of Allentown's Parks Department has any understanding of stream buffers, the extent and damage of invasive plants etc.etc. Sustainable Park concepts aren't even given lip service. Groups like the Wildlands, Friends,Trexler and EAC had better do some serious education and advocacy or forever hid their heads in shame. God bless Katie Bee for her concern, but there is NO WAY IN HELL that invasive plants can be held in check using collage student volunteers. Please, such suggestions hurt your cause.

May 7, 2010 at 2:27 PM  

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