Cunnane Stratton Reynolds (CSR) completed the Park Atlantic Parks and Green Areas Sustainable Management Action Plan project in 2012. Among the actions proposed in the Action Plans was the formulation and application of a methodology for economic valuation of ecosystem services (ESS) delivered by urban green infrastructure (GI), to inform spatial and budgetary planning for parks and other open space resources. The partner cities led by Angers in association with Plante et Cité decided to pursue this particular action through a Park Atlantic project extension. In November 2013 CSR and Optimize economic consultants were appointed to coordinate a short term study to initiate this action, to encourage the cities to adopt GI and ESS planning in their urban planning policy and practice.
CSR and Optimize first conducted a literature review to identify suitable methodologies for the economic valuation of a suite of ESS typically delivered by urban GI. We then prepared a brief for the Park Atlantic partner cities, to apply the methodologies to all or part of the cities’ GI. Following receipt of reports on the city studies CSR and Optimize prepared an Assimilation Report summarising the findings.
For CSR and Optimize’s own study in Limerick the Limerick 2030 – An Economic and Spatial Development Plan was selected as the subject, in consultation with Limerick City and County Council. The proposals in the plan cover a large proportion of the city centre public realm and represent a major opportunity to introduce green infrastructure to the city centre and to deliver a range of ecosystem services, particularly cultural services. To inform this study, CSR prepared a conceptual masterplan for the ‘world class waterfront’ proposed in the 2030 Plan.