North Ayrshire Council is seeking to develop and implement the Green Network across North Ayrshire.
In support it will:
- Adopt and implement a revised Local Biodiversity Action Plan.
- Implement the Greening of the Core Path Network.
North Ayrshire Local Development Plan
Adopted in 20 May 2014, the North Ayrshire Local Development Plan recognises the multiple benefits of the green network for North Ayrshire’s economy and environment and the role it plays in improving the quality of life and place for local communities. The plan has mapped elements of the green network for protection and enhancement, including core paths, public parks, sensitive landscape, Clyde Muirshiel Regional Park, and the North and Central Arran National Scenic Area.
Draft green network supplementary guidance will be published in early 2015 for public consultation. Drawing from best practice, the guidance will set out North Ayrshire Council’s requirements for the appraisal and delivery of green networks through the planning process.
Green Network Projects
A number of projects have been developed across North Ayrshire to deliver the Central Scotland Green Network (CSGN) at a local level. These have been part funded by the CSGN Development Fund and include:
- The Connecting Business and Communities Project, which is contributing to the Irvine Green Network by creating accessible active travel routes through attractive green space using a path network between Irvine and the Irvine Innovation and Industry (i3) site. The project implements a number of the recommendations of the Irvine Bay Green Network Study previously funded by the CSGN Development Fund and prepared by Irvine Bay Regeneration Company. It connects local housing areas, key industrial sites, stalled industrial sites, green spaces, core paths and Scottish Wildlife Trust (SWT) reserves making them more attractive and accessible to the local community.
- The Connecting Communities project which is expanding the Kilbirnie Green Network by improving the value of local greenspace sites in terms of recreation and biodiversity and making them more attractive and accessible to the local community.
The Ayrshire & Arran Forestry & Woodland Strategy
Trees, forests and woodlands comprise around 23% of the land cover of Ayrshire and Arran. They provide a key resource for biodiversity and deliver a wide range of environmental benefits that help to support the region’s communities. Despite the undoubted importance of the woodland resource and allied industries within this area, there is still significant potential for their contribution to be improved and expanded.
The Ayrshire & Arran Forestry & Woodland Strategy (2014) sets out priorities to plant 3 million more trees in Ayrshire and Arran. The strategy was developed by the Ayrshire Green Network Partnership which was set up to deliver the shared goals and vision of the Central Scotland Green Network with a regional focus to deliver local priorities in the Ayrshire area. The partnership is a joint initiative between Forestry Commission Scotland, Scottish Natural Heritage, South Ayrshire Council, East Ayrshire Council and North Ayrshire Council.
Local Biodiversity Action Plan (LBAP)
The 2014 -17 LBAP for North Ayrshire is a statement of the strategic and coordinated action that the Biodiversity Partnership, with support from a number of locally based NGOs, community groups and individual recorders, intends to achieve over the next three years in order to protect and enhance biodiversity within North Ayrshire.
The proposed actions which take previous Ayrshire LBAPs into consideration include:
- coordination and monitoring
- practical delivery on habitat projects targeted at:
- coastal and river corridors
- farmland wildlife
- forests and woodlands
- urban post-industrial sites
- path networks
- urban greenspace