THE Queensland Government last week released the Queensland Greenspace Strategy 2011-2020, which aims to help secure and provide better public access to greenspace and help achieve the government's target of a 50 per cent increase in land protected for conservation and outdoor recreation.
Local Government Minister Paul Lucas said the comprehensive plan to increase parks, recreational walking tracks, off road vehicle tracks, marine parks and other outdoor resources was a direct outcome of the Queensland Growth Management Summit held in March 2010.
"Greenspaces whether a national park with a dedicated walking track or the local sports field are important to the lives of Queenslanders and our ability to attract tourists," Mr Lucas said, adding that quality greenspace leads to healthier lifestyles and a better quality of life.
Mr Lucas said the strategy aims to protect and preserve the greenspace Queensland already has and looks at ways of increasing the amount of Greenspace into the future.
According to the government, the Greenspace Strategy looks for new greenspace through opportunities such as state-funded infrastructure projects, State Development Areas, statutory regional plans, unallocated state lands that are slated for disposal, environmental offsets and regional transport plans.
Annual action plans will be developed and made publicly available. The 2011-2012 action plan includes the following initiatives:
- Delivering new recreation facilities valued at more than $43 million;
- Completing the existing regional trails program;
- Completing the state schools' community greenspace project; and
- Delivering greenspace network plans for sustainable growth regions.
Environment Minister Vicky Darling said Queensland's natural areas such as state forests, coasts, beaches and marine parks complement formal greenspace areas and provide a wide range of recreation opportunities for people who enjoy spending time in our great outdoors.
A dedicated website, 'Parks 4 People', has been set up to help Queensland residents find outdoor recreation areas in their neighbourhood.
The Queensland Greenspace Strategy 2011-2020 and the Parks 4 People website are available from the Department of Local Government and Planning website at <http://www.dlgp.qld.gov.au/>.