Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Green deserts?

I was reflecting some more on my post (below) about public open space never being more than a couple of blocks away in Perth.

It's more or less true. But there's still a problem.

And that is that they're empty spaces. More or less.

A local government colleague used to refer to them as "green deserts". Another one agreed but said it didn't matter. "The important thing is that we see them" he said. "That's just as good as being in them".


Why are our parks so under-utilised? Because we all have a "park" in the form of a backyard.

More or less.

But or course the times they are a changin'. Urban infill is coming. At least I hope it is. Because it needs to. It's the key to us becoming an interesting city. Living closer together. You know, being neighbourly and all that. Like the Italians. And the Spanish. It astonishes me how many Aussies don't even know the people who live next door.

This is a bit of a loose ramble, huh? But I think you see what I'm getting at. Something's definitely wrong about empty parks. It says something about us. Exactly what I'm not sure.

Any ideas?


  1. I often note this in community parks, but I never note this in major parks like those associated with the foreshore. Kings PArk, Sir James Mitchell, etc, etc, are always full of people. Do you think people value places with proximity to water more, perhaps? Or is it maybe the places with bbqs, etc - like more "infrastructure"? Generally I think the more effort put into a park the better patronised it is.
    While I do think people are generally slumped on the couch, watching TV, then wondering why they feel so soul-destroyed, I sort of also agree with the guy who just thinks it's important that we see them.
    Still.... use it or lose it....
    You don't miss something until it's not there any more.
    I realise this comment is ridiculously unstructured but it's Friday afternoon!

    1. It's a perfect match for a ridiculously unstructured post :) I think you might be onto it with "better park = better patronage" though. Quality, not quantity, might be a better focus, huh? Love the picture of the soul-destroyed couch-dweller! Was just discussing this with someone the other day - that there's no freedom in just doing whatever you want but rather in "structure". Anyways, I digress. Interesting though, isn't it?