Landscape planning

Reflections on the past, directions for the future

Authored by: Sue Kidd

The Routledge Companion to Landscape Studies

Print publication date:  December  2012
Online publication date:  February  2013

Print ISBN: 9780415684606
eBook ISBN: 9780203096925
Adobe ISBN: 9781136220609


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The European Landscape Convention (ELC) defines landscape as ‘an area, as perceived by people, whose character is the result of the action and interaction of natural and/or human factors’ and landscape planning as ‘strong forward-looking action to enhance, restore or create landscapes’ (Council of Europe, 2000, Article 1). Signed in Florence in October 2000, the Convention reflects the now internationally recognised view that landscape is to be found and planned for everywhere and that given the accelerating pace of landscape change (associated with for example rising human population, growing levels of urbanisation, increasing resource demands and human induced climate change) proactive, future orientated and democratically informed landscape planning is urgently required. Although landscape design and landscape planning have been regarded as being part of the same continuum informed by common understandings, perhaps a key distinction that needs to be noted at the outset relates to matters of scale. While the former tends to be focussed on the detailed delivery of landscape intervention on a particular site, landscape planning is more strategic in its view and application and may relate to whole neighbourhoods, cities or regions and increasingly to national and transnational scales. Distinctions are also evident in terms of the types of intervention involved and methods used, and in the types of client and their motivations (Stiles, 1994).

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