Spring is Mother Nature’s wake-up call to green spaces everywhere and thanks to the vision of Adelaide’s first Surveyor General, Colonel William Light, the City of Adelaide has many green town squares and a glorious belt of Park Lands – so there’s no better place to watch the season come to life.
But while our green spaces are a magnificent sight, there’s more value in our Park Lands and each shady city tree than meets the eye.
Changes to climate affect the liveability of a city, impacting on the health and wellbeing of residents and workers. Bureau of Meteorology statistics show Adelaide is already experiencing changes to its climate, with the average number of days over 35˚C rising from 17.1 between 1977-1996 to 24 days between 1996-2016.
Green infrastructure – trees, shrubs, plants, grass, community and verge gardens and parks – can increase the liveability and climate resilience of our city. For example, increasing tree canopy cover can help counter the Urban Heat Island effect, where our city stores the day’s heat in hard surfaces like concrete and roads, then slowly releases it after sunset – extending a hot day even further.
Shading buildings and streets with trees and reducing hard surfaces with garden beds, keeps our city cool creating a greener more comfortable, liveable and attractive environment.
How green gives back
The City of Adelaide has made a commitment in its 2016-2020 Strategic Plan to increase green space and greenery in the built-up areas of the city by 100,000m2 by 2020 as well as planting an additional 1,000 trees – and is on target to reach this number.
In 2016/17 over 250 trees were planted in City of Adelaide streets and this activity remains a priority into the current financial year. Up to another 200 new trees are planned to be planted in residential streets across the city in 2017/18 as part of Council’s commitment to improving many main and residential streetscapes and laneways.
The focus will be on planting trees in built-up areas with little or no canopy cover such as Hurman Street in the city’s South-West, which underwent a green makeover in 2017.