VictoriaPark is a unique park, rich with the combination of environmental,historical, and cultural heritage. In addition, the park has anoutstanding landscape with a conservation value. It is locatedbetween Spring Garden Road and South Park Street, Halifax, NS B3J.Its PID code is 00125542. The park was formed in the late nineteenthcentury after a long negotiation between MR. James Oswald ofScotstoun and Patrick Municipal Council (Alberti and Marzluff, 2004).Mr. Oswald urged that the park would be of great benefit to thePatrick Burgh people. Locally and internationally, the significanceof has been recognised due to its inclusion in DesignedLandscapes and Inventory of Gardens in Scotland. Hence, the park isrecognised as one of the most beautiful parks with a designedlandscape. Despite its designed landscape, the park is mandated tosatisfy the demand of the public who visit the park. For this reason,the park has upgrading programs to improve the play area and plantingscheme to plant more trees even on the rock side of the park.Overall, is an attractive, beautiful ground thatattract over half a million visitors annually. Moreover, it can boostdue to its extensive formal and informal gardens, arboretum, carpetbedding, and museum pre-historic fossils. This piece of work reportson the ecosystem goods and services (EGS) of , itsbenefits to the residents and visitors, as well as givesrecommendations for its improvements.
VictoriaPark is a good example to illustrate on the ecosystems goods andservices that are provided by natural features. Ecological goods andservices (EGS) are the products of ecological functions of anecosystem (Pickett,Cadenasso, Grove, Boone, Groffman, Irwin, and Warren, 2011).In addition to human beings, animals and plants also benefit from theecological goods and services. Examples of ecological goods areabundant fresh water and clean air. On the other hand, examples ofecological services include maintenance of biodiversity, purificationof water and air, pollution of crops and natural vegetation, soilgeneration and renewal, groundwater recharge, greenhouse gasmitigation, seed dispersal, among others. Unfortunately, the processof ecological goods and services occur over a long period due totheir complexity. Hence, fit the best to explainecological goods and services because of its air pollution, smog, andautomobile exhaust.
Theconcept of ecosystem goods and services to provide benefits to thehuman being is a long history. In 1970, a list that stated the threatof environmental services was published. Later in 1981, Ehrlich andEhrlich recoiled the word “ecosystem services” and referred it toessential and free services given by natural ecosystem to supporthuman life. Further, the Loures,Santos,and Thomas (2007), echoed this definition and also defined ecosystemservices as processes and conditions under which the naturalecosystems fulfils and sustain human life. Later, other authors gavetheir definitions, but they are had a similar definition to meanbasic life-support services.
Firstly, has a perfect geographical location a few kilometresfrom the city. The urban forest of the park plays a vital role in“softening” large buildings. Most of these benefits areintegrated into aesthetic health, green infrastructure, andliveability values. Although there are fewer native ecosystems andcomplex landscape, the park provides watershed and biodiversitybenefits. Secondly, has quality air and a closeconnection between air and air quality.
Although has a beautiful view, they have numerous functions thatresult in tangible benefits to the community (Sherer,2003).Its ecosystem good and services are of great benefits to its visitorsand residents. The most common benefits include aesthetic, economic,food production, heritage, health livability, watershed health, greeninfrastructure, and biodiversity.
CleanAir and Fresh Water
VictoriaPark is known to have clean and fresh air. Trees and vegetations getrid of pollutants from the atmosphere surrounding the park. Accordingto Rees (1997), the Victoria’s Park trees get rid of over onehundred thousand tonnes of pollutant annually. In addition, theVictoria’s vegetation removes over fifty thousand kilograms of airpollutants annually. In total, the amount of air pollution that thetrees and vegetation removes is much high than using any other meansto eliminate pollution. Despite, trees offers shades that aresignificantly helpful to reduce UV light, reduce heat stress, as wellas reduce skin cancer. Further, trees have the ability to cool theair through the process of evapo-transpiration. Correspondingly, thishelps to fight against cases of obesity since the outdoor activitiesare more pleasant. Municipality(2013) urges that the trees in the park create a favourableenvironment for social meeting since the park is located far fromnoise and roads.
Inthe current world, urban forests are an essential part of cityinfrastructure. This green infrastructure has imperative functionssuch as erosion control, shading, visual and noise buffer, rainwatermanagement, water, air pollution reduction, climate changemitigation, adaption, and enhancement of greenways (Manuel, 2003).However, just like any other of infrastructure, green infrastructurebenefits are more efficient when the environment is properly planned,constructed, designed, and maintained- both at the landscape and atthe site level.
Increasingly,the Victorian trees generate more sustainable outcomes whenintegrated into engineered systems. For instance, rain gardens andbio swales can be integrated into the upstream of public storm waterinfrastructure. According to research, trees in the city saves lotsof energy annually through wind shielding and shading hence, reducesthe production of carbon dioxides. In addition, the urban treesabsorb methane, a greenhouse gas.
VictoriaPark plays a significant role in protecting watershed health. Besidescreeks and streams, the treed environment is vital for shadingstreams. This is especially important because cool stream createsconducive living environment for fish and other aquatic life. Inaddition, the treed environment provides nutrients and preventsstream bank erosion. Further, the catchment area provides pervioussurface that has the ability to soak the water into the ground, lowerthe rate that water enters into stream habitats. On the other hand,the roots of the trees remove pollutants from the storm water,minimize soil erosion and flooding, and help to maintain waterquality. Additionally, the roots of the trees enhance biologicalactivity of the soils (Sherer,2003).This enhances the soil to come up with soil structure that iseffective infiltration of rainwater. Moreover, it promotes theconditions for healthy communities of bacteria, insects, fungi, andplant communities.
Inthe current world, there is great pressure that demands people toutilize public spaces to produce fruits and vegetables. neither is left out. Many neighbouring residents have portions ofhome gardens where they plant fruits such as berries and apples. Inaddition, some of the residents use their boulevards to plantvegetables such as potatoes, chard, and lettuce. Sadly, these fruitsand food production is not enough since there is high demand thansupply due to the high number of people living in the multi-unitbuilding or renting in the surrounding areas. Because of highpopulation, most people lack access to the land. However, the areaOCP have implemented various strategies to increase local foodproduction such as increasing allotment gardens and edible landscape,coming up with mechanism that support and encourage food productionon public land, as well as use park land for the purpose of foodproduction. Sorrowfully, although food production around the park hasmany benefits, it also has some disadvantages. For instance, a fruitcan fall from a tree and create a hazardous effect like damaging avehicle (Pickett et. al., 2011).
Normally,every park has trees, and some are associated with a heritage value.A tree may have a botanical value, physical stature, or a historicalsignificance. Most significant trees in a park either are “adopted”by local residents or are situated in a prominent spot. Some peopleplant trees to memorialize important historic events or their lovedones. No matter their significance, park trees are powerful symbolsand are of great benefits to the community.
VictoriaPark provides prominent habitat and biodiversity concentration to itsneighbouring locality. Besides its natural values, the treed environment provides momentous recreational, aesthetic, andeconomic benefits to the tourists and residents who visit the park.The trees offer natural beauty and shades, as well as supportwatershed health and biodiversity. However, different trees withinthe park have different owners ranging from the government,institutions, schools, and individuals. For this reasons, the parkhas a tree program that monitors tree planting and their maintenance.According to the tree inventory, by 2005, the park had eighteenthousand trees from one hundred and ninety species (Manuel, 2003).The genus Prunusthat comprises of the cherries and plums are the most comprising of30% of all trees. Acer(Maple) comprises of 10%, Crataegus(Hawthorn) comprises of 10%, Betula(Birch and Aspen) comprises of 8%, while Quercus(Oak) and Aesculus(Chestnut) comprising of 7% each species. In case there is a need toremove a certain tree due safety reasons, another tree is plantedwith greater diversity of species.
Normally,trees are planted with the aim to create interesting colours, shapes,and a beautiful views landscape, as well as soften building facades.People love visiting Victoria parks to enjoy its natural andornamental landscape. According to Loureset. al., (2007),the main role of the park is to beautify and enhance the public realmquality. One of the principals of the Victoria tree programs is toput more effort in beautification of the park and draw attention totourists all over the world. The park would look different withouttrees hence, trees play an essential role to provide the sense ofplace and character within the neighbourhood. Different trees areused for a different purpose where some anchor the community andoffer continuity of generations of visitors and residents. In thecase where a tree is cut down or dies, one can tell the visceral thatit causes to the local residents.
Unfortunately,it is hard to place an economic value of a public park located withina community. Nevertheless, it is with no doubt that, the park addsvalue to its neighbouring community, as well as reduce costs.According to research conducted by university students, treesincreases property values and correspondingly increase the value ofresidential property by 4-16%. Likewise, the value of commercial realestate rental costs increase by 10% or even more. This phenomenon canbe proved in the neighbourhood of the Victoria’s park. Furthermore,treed environment add value to a locality by making it more appealingand attractive environment. Alberti (2004) urges that tourists preferenvironments with high levels of vegetation and green space. Theseplaces are considered more convenient for shopping and maintainingbusiness since there are fewer cases of crime. Areas with treescapes, shoppers will trade their goods and services under the shade.Another economic benefit of is a result of its treesintercept with rainwater. This saves the city from using a lot ofmoney annually in the storm water management, as well as reduces thechances of contaminating the water with chemicals such asphosphorous, chromium, and cadmium. Though not easily noticed, theshades from the trees prolong the life of roads and parking lotswithin the park- yet cost saving.
Accordingto Municipality(2013),parks are necessary element for creating a livable community withstrong pride. For instance, doctors believe that treed environmentreduces stress. According to research, drivers who continuously driveacross the natural environment have a higher cause to recover from asimilar kind of stress than a driver who continuously drives in abuilt-up mall environment. Correspondingly, children with ADHD recordfewer symptoms after they are exposed to the natural environment. Onthe other hand, employees who view natural setting from their workingdesks have great of satisfaction while patients who view green spaceand trees from their beds tends to recover more quickly.
Overview, is the best serene for any tourist planning to spendtime in a park. However, for the park to be more effective, itsmanagement should come up with strategies water treatment strategy,biological control strategy, and air control regulation.
Thebest strategy to get lid of the waste product within the park is tocome up with litters. These litters should be distributed everywherein the park. At least daily, these litterbins should be emptied toavoid overflow of waste products. During summers, the park iscommonly used, and there are many visitors touring the Park hence,the litters bin should be emptied twice per day. It is then theresponsibility of the park management to deal with the waste. In canchoose to recycle them or take them to appropriate landfill site. Onthe other hand, the park had green wastes that are because of cuttinggrass, flowerbeds, and trees. In this case, the waste can be recycledback in the shrubs beds (Municipality,2013).Any other green waste that cannot be recycled should be collected andput in a container, and later transported to the designated councilarea. As cities grow over time, parks become fragmented. In the sametime, the ecological complexity reduces, as well as biodiversityvalues declines. Therefore, it is important to implement strategiesto support biodiversity. The city management should identify a methodto eliminate air pollution within the park premises. For instance, itcan come up with pedestrian footpath and sidewalks. The green spacealong these sidewalks and footpath will support activetransportation hence, reduce greenhouse gas footprints. Accordingly,this will increase habitat and biodiversity. In addition, the citymanagement should come up with a program that supports restoration,reconnection, and enhancement of the park natural areas.
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