A Green Grid is an ecological network that connects a series of core ‘ecosystems’ with corridors and stepping stones of habitats.
Parks and open spaces form the core areas of the network connected by corridors of street trees, highway verges, railway embankments, and gardens etc.
Identifying a green grid for Southampton will enable better management and protection of biodiversity by identifying and recording what is of value.
We want more green infrastructure in our city. The benefits people receive from nature include the regulation of summer temperatures by trees, grass and soils managing surface water runoff and biodiverse green spaces supporting health and wellbeing. A green grid will help us recognise and safeguard existing green infrastructure and identify how the best benefits can be achieved by introducing more.
The cities green spaces can be fragmented. To maximise their potential, they need to be networked allowing people and wildlife to move around together. Work to develop our Green Grid started in January, the first step is to produce a draft map clearly identifying our green spaces. The team are assessing socio-economic data alongside data on priority habitats, designated sites, street trees, public rights of way and to produce a draft map to be published by May.
We will undertake an engagement exercise over the summer to ensure the Green Grid provides a thorough and accurate interpretation of the city and how improvements might achieved.
We anticipate the Green Grid will be published around the end of the year, accompanied with an action plan identifying priorities for delivering improvement.