Plans recognising the potential of Manchester's parks as crucial assets at the heart of their communities were examined at a scrutiny meeting this week.
Manchester's emerging Parks Strategy will be designed with a focus on the needs of communities - and on how local people can become more involved.
It recognises that the city's 143 parks and open spaces make a huge contribution to the city's wider goal - from supporting regeneration and economic growth to encouraging healthier lifestyles and acting as community focal points, or even destinations in their own right.
The Parks Strategy will be based on a wide-ranging consultation to get the views of residents, existing parks friends’ groups, plus interested organisations such as the Heritage Lottery Fund and the RSPB.
The consultation focuses on four main themes - based around creating "world-class green spaces to meet, relax and play."
- Creating parks at the heart of neighbourhoods - Looking at how parks benefit local neighbourhoods and can help create places where people want to live.
- Recognising that active parks support healthy communities - Considering what each park is used for, how they can best serve local residents and how to ensure that everyone has access.
- Developing the Manchester Parks Standard - Considering the best way parks can be looked after and managed with the involvement of local residents.
- Establishing productive parks in partnership - Looking at how parks can better foster a sense of ownership and pride with local residents and groups, as well as how the Council can work better with partner organisations to generate income for re-investment back into parks.
City centre councillor Kevin Peel said:
"We love our city centre parks and we know they have lots of potential to be much better utilised, so we really welcome this new strategy and focus on our parks and open spaces.
"We'll be actively participating in the consultation and ensuring that city centre residents have their say in how we can improve our parks and increase local ownership of these great spaces."