A Government-commissioned report has welcomed ambitious proposals to create a new urban National Park in the West Midlands region.
The interim findings of the Government’s Landscapes Review said officials would like to see ‘the encouragement of a wider range of non-designated systems of landscape protection,’ such as the vision to transform the West Midlands Combined Authority region.
The concept would create a National Park in the region spanning more than seven cities and creating hundreds of miles of green space, conservation areas and new cycle routes.
The bold proposals have been drawn up by Kathryn Moore, Professor of Landscape Architecture at Birmingham City University.
It would reimagine what the West Midlands could become by taking a new look at the way its landscape is viewed.
Professor Moore said:
“The interim findings of this report demonstrate a welcome appetite to take a different look at how we view our cities and reimagine what these spaces are, and what they could become
A West Midlands National Park would be a vehicle to help drive social, economic and environmental change in the region, profoundly changing its identity.”
“It is a vision of what the West Midlands can become when the significance of its landscape is properly realised and celebrated. Above all, this proposal’s central purpose is real transformation.”
Latest developments in the proposals were showcased in front of hundreds of delegates from across the globe during the two-day ‘SATURN’ event held at Birmingham City University’s City Centre Campus (July 31 – August 1).
Landscape Architects working on the vision suggest once detailed case studies have been carried out, a West Midland National Park could see the area categorised as ‘a region of a thousand cycle and footpaths, a thousand parks and a thousand lakes’ featuring extensive:
- Creative hubs
- New forests and woodlands
- Hi-tech agriculture
- Green Industries
- Systems of rainwater gardens and sustainable urban drainage
- Increased and better connected areas of biodiversity
- Engaged communities and networks working towards a new vision of what the West Midlands Combined Authority region could become in 20 years’ time.