Projects: Pan Development & Country Park

Each of us in the Arc team has been heavily involved, through our previous employment, in the creation of Pan Country Park. This 10 Ha public park was set up as part of the ecological and green infrastructure mitigation derived from planning approval for a 1000-unit housing development on the eastern order of Newport. The park comprises three large blocks of derelict farmland now planted with new hedges, orchards and disease-resistant elms and with new paths, bridges and benches. It’s a marvellous project that we’re happy to still be helping with.

One of the essential measures for the future care of the park has been the establishment of a management company. The manco has also taken on responsibility for shared greenspace and public realm across the new housing development and asked us to help with the preparation of tendering documents for grounds maintenance. Our approach was to specify an ‘edible’ landscape of decorative foodplants providing foliage, pollen, nectar, seeds and fruit for wildlife and a tender that paid close attention to the control of invasive non-native species but otherwise minimised the use of herbicides. The scheme was costed and proved significantly cheaper than more orthodox grounds contracts. In this way we have been able to align the conservation objectives of the country park with the management and composition of the urban environment alongside and in so doing have tried to create conditions that will encourage ‘nature nearby’ and make wildlife encounter more likely for many hundreds of people.

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