The Vision for Open Space – A comprehensive and sustainable network of quality open space facilities to serve the needs of the community by ensuring: ^aEURc equity of access; ^aEURc equity of maintenance; ^aEURc balance between organised and informal recreation opportunities; ^aEURc environmental conservation and enhancement; and ^aEURc responsiveness to changing community needs. Underpinning the “vision”, as well as the approach to policy, planning, design and development of open space within the City of Norwood, Payneham & St Peters, are a number of broad open space principles as follows.
Planning and management practice has moved away from the quantity of open space to the quality of provision. Issues such as biodiversity and water conservation and safety are examples of important issues linked to the quality of open space. Given the relatively limited amount of open space in many parts of the City of Norwood, Payneham & St Peters, it is important that Council ‘makes the most’ of its open space network by striving to achieve high quality standards. The community has a diverse range of needs for informal recreation, as well as structured sporting activities. The open space needs of the community will be best served by providing a range of different types of open space and developing parks and reserves to complement each other, rather than duplicating the experiences provided by each.
The community has a right to equal access to open space. A range of open space facilities should be located within appropriate distances from residents and be readily available and easily accessed. People within the community who are “mobility disadvantaged”, namely children, older people, people with disabilities and those without private vehicles must appropriately be catered for. Adequate facilities and good street connections for walking and cycling with appropriate linkages to open spaces, need to be provided. The affordability of recreation opportunities is also an important consideration in the development of open space facilities. The focus should be on retaining and in some cases acquiring open space, to improve equity of access.
Local and State Government bodies have a responsibility to ensure that open space facilities, as an important community resource, are developed in a sustainable manner and are managed as efficiently as possible. The community is placing greater emphasis on biodiversity and water conservation so that decisions regarding management of Council’s open space resources need to focus on sustainable outcomes. A cross-sector approach with integrated planning at all levels across Council will also facilitate efficient management.
The needs of the community will change over time, and Council should be flexible and responsive to the changing needs of the community they serve. Open space facilities also need to be flexible, balancing the needs of the community for informal and unstructured recreation areas against more traditional formal sporting activities.
Council-Wide Strategies for Open Space include the amount (making the most of existing open space in the City whilst acknowledging and expanding the role of non-traditional forms of open space such as schools, malls and commercial centres; and improving the biodiversity values within open space to contribute to nature conservation); the hierarchy (Increase the proportion of District level open space in ‘gap areas’ in the City by upgrading local level parks with additional recreation facilities, at the same time examining the potential for additional local pocket parks in higher density gap areas); function (maintain a diversity of functions of open space in the City of Norwood, Payneham & St Peters, with greater emphasis on biodiversity conservation and habitat creation; the quality (strive to achieve the highest possible quality in appearance and function of open space);
Establish precinct strategies for open space by variously exploring opportunities to develop additional local open space in each Precinct and improve access to and local function of existing open spaces; negotiating shared-use agreements to use existing school facilities; maximising the variety and quality of recreation facilities within existing areas of open space, as well as exploring opportunities for smaller pocket reserves