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Sustainable places

Sustainable places are for people. They are characterised by well-managed greenspace that improve the quality of local environments, promote walking and cycling and support mental well-being. Sustainable places foster a strong connection between people and place and high levels of involvement by people in planning and managing their local environment.

A series of Sharing Good Practice events in 2008-09 looked at sustainable places from the different perspectives of: people and communities, participation, sustainable development, land use, design and land use planning, and health and productive landscapes.  A number of common themes emerged:

  • people and communities are at the centre of sustainable places
  • a good measure of a sustainable place is one that makes people healthy
  • place matters - including the quality of the natural heritage in the spaces between buildings and between places
  • all of the different aspects of sustainable places are inextricably connected
  • it is only possible to make sense of these connections at a human scale - and this should be the basis for designing, planning and managing our settlements, based on walkable environments
  • it is important to build social capital

For more detail see Making Sustainable Places: making them happen  PDF document .

Key elements of our approach

  • We have established Greenspace Scotland external site as an organisation to champion thinking and good practice on greenspace provision and management.
  • We are working closely with Greenspace Scotland on a State of Scotland's Greenspace report.
  • We work with urban local authorities to help them in mapping and characterising their greenspace, and to improve the quality of local environments, for example through the Glasgow and Clyde Valley Green Network external site
  • We support the concept of the Central Scotland Green Network, and are working closely with others to contribute to it.
  • We are contributing to Scottish Government's Sustainable Communities Initiative external site .

Our aspirations

We want to see

  • creation of a better and more attractive environment for people to live and work in, with accessible, well-managed greenspace
  • the development of places and facilities of improved quality for people to enjoy the outdoors, both in rural and urban environments, and a network of paths close to where people live for both recreation and local travel
  • greater involvement by people and pride, in the planning and management of the places and landscapes around them, through volunteering and community initiatives such as the Breathing Places external site local biodiversity projects
  • the planning and design of new development and land use which enhances regional distinctiveness and sense of place


Last updated on Monday 9th April 2012 at 10:57 AM. Click here to comment on this page