Further plans to boost biodiversity in Dundee

Further plans to boost biodiversity in Dundee Image

Further development of biodiversity is being proposed for some green spaces across Dundee following suggestions from communities to enhance open areas.

As grounds maintenance services resume following the easing of lockdown restrictions, the Council is seeking to work with the public on plans to create naturalised spaces that would encourage wildlife.

In line with the Council’s Biodiversity Plan, this would reduce the amount of herbicide use and grass cutting across the city.

Changes to these services would not affect playpark spaces, sports areas, cemeteries or other high priority locations like communal spaces at housing, but would allow for limited parts of some public parks to be developed as biodiversity areas. 

Councillor Anne Rendall, Neighbourhood Services Convener, said: “I’m pleased to report that the first phase of our resumed grounds maintenance – which included places such as cemeteries and sheltered housing areas - is ahead of schedule.

“We have now started phase two as of Monday (15th June), with the focus on parks, open spaces and housing areas.

“It is important that we safely resume this work across the city following the restrictions imposed in response to the Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

“At the same time, there are opportunities – in the right areas and with the community’s support – to embrace how nature has restored itself in recent weeks, in line with our biodiversity ambitions.

“We’ve received correspondence from people who want to see the further development of biodiversity and naturalised areas, and we want to engage further with communities to develop this.”

Council officers have been working with residents and organisations in the West End to seek community views on naturalised zones within Magdalen Green.

At the same time, a survey has identified a number of areas within parks and green spaces elsewhere in the city which can be given a provisional designation of biodiversity or naturalised zones.

Over 25 potential sites across the city have been identified. 

Plans are being put in place for engagement with the local communities and community councils over the coming months in line with the work already under way at Magdalen Green. In the meantime, the areas provisionally identified will be allowed to develop without herbicide use or grass cutting.

Councillor Steven Rome, Neighbourhood Services Depute Convener, said: “This offers an exciting opportunity to meet our ambitious goals on climate change and achieving greater sustainability for the future of Dundee. 

“These proposed changes will ensure we provide a regular grounds maintenance service in popular areas such as parks and green spaces, while ensuring greater blooming at natural spots around the city. 

“We’ve already seen successful examples of this at Riverside, which visitors can enjoy as one of the first things they see when visiting Dundee.

“Dundee is perfect for introducing more wildflower meadows. 41% of our city is publicly accessible greenspace – the highest in Scotland.

“High levels of biodiversity ensures the natural sustainability of all life. The Local Biodiversity Action Plan shows our commitment to maintaining our natural environment.

“The current circumstances present us with an opportunity to work with communities to expand our number of meadows, wildflowers and wildlife further.”

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