Re-green Front Gardens
It should be a requirement for each front garden
to be at least a third grass/garden.
(This could be achieved by: either making it a
requirement by, say, 2020; or placing an immediate
ban on new conversions of front gardens to hard-standing
and insisting on the `one-third rule' being imposed
when a property is sold.)
If we win the money, it could be used for grants
of half the cost to residents for changing hard-standing
back to garden or lawn.
Some reasons for imposing this are:
(1) Front gardens absorb rainwater, which just runs off
hard-standing, exacerbating flash-flooding which the drains are not
designed to deal with. David Attenborough's BBC1 programme
`Climate Change: Britain Under Threat' made the point that
`something as simple as a new paved driveway will cause serious
problems for future generations ... the sewers can no longer cope
with the excess'.
(2) It takes parking spaces out of the `common stock', even when the
owner is away.
(3) It reduces the total `green area'; green areas act as sinks for
carbon dioxide, reducing the global warming effect.
(4) It reduces the total `green area'; green areas absorb
pollutants, improving the general air quality. Michael Mosley's recent programme showed that you could halve your exposure to life-threatening particulates by planting a tree in your front garden.
(5) Front gardens provide habitats for many creatures. An RSPB
report recently identified the loss of habitat due to tarmac
replacing front gardens as having a highly significant detrimental
effect on British songbird populations.
(6) It looks dreadful in most cases. See the Council's own
planning Web site which includes a photo captioned `The
introduction of car parking has destroyed the character
in many cases.'
(7) The undulating pavement levels are a hazard to
blind/elderly/disabled people and others (there are a couple of
drives in Redlandl that are so steep that they may actually be
too dangerous for wheelchair users to cross).
(8) Cars driving across pavements out of driveways (sometimes
backing at speed!) are a direct danger to pedestrians.
(9) There is anecdotal evidence of a correlation between gardens
disappearing under tarmac and petty vandalism (graffiti, littering
etc), possibly due to a perceived loss of pride in an area or
general lack of concern.
(10) Front gardens carelessly converted to tarmac can manifest a
mindset of casual car use for short journeys (bad from many angles,
including environment/global warming and obesity/public health
areas) and lack of concern for the local area.
Why the contribution is important
The air quality in Bristol is in urgent need of improvement.
by user515911 on November 25, 2013 at 07:21PM