Improving access to green spaces—like parks, community gardens, and greenways—builds the community and improves the health of residents.
Read about the:
Reaching our targets will require planting more trees on our streets and in our backyards and public spaces, as well as adding more green space to our existing neighbourhoods. Our Urban Forest Strategy helps guide this work.
Recent initiatives that bring us closer to reaching the Access to Nature goal.
We created new parks in neighourhoods:
Community engagement on park design is planned for 2015 with construction expected by the end of the year.
In 2014, we removed a bylaw provision that allowed property owners to cut down one healthy tree per year.
Canopy cover, the area of the city covered by trees as seen from the air, is commonly used by cities to measure health of the urban forest and the benefits it provides (such as air quality and rainwater absorption). Vancouver’s canopy has been in decline over the last two decades and currently sits at 18%, largely due to the loss of large stature trees on private property.
Passed in 2014, the Urban Forest Strategy Framework established the goal of growing our canopy back to 22% by 2055. Achieving this goal will involve not only the planting of new trees, but the retention of existing canopy, updated species selection, climate adaptation, and long-term planning and maintenance.
An excellent indicator of healthy ecosystems, birds provide a link between people and local biodiversity.
The inaugural City Bird competition was held in 2014 to raise awareness about the importance of birds in Vancouver. In the end, the Black-capped Chickadee took home the gold for 2014, with over 700,000 votes cast during the voting process.
Following the City Bird competition during Bird Week 2014, the Vancouver Bird Strategy was passed by City Council and the Park Board in January 2015. It outlines the work necessary to create conditions for native birds to thrive in Vancouver.
With this strategy, Vancouver will be a world leader in supporting a rich and diverse group of native birds year-round, which has important economic, social and environmental benefits and helps the Greenest City goal of providing residents greater access to nature.
In July 2014 the Park Board passed Rewilding Vancouver: An Environmental Education and Stewardship Action Plan.
Over the next five years, we will work with partners to enhance the ability of residents to experience nature and increase understanding and awareness of nature in Vancouver. The plan was developed collaboratively by the Environmental Education and Stewardship Task Force and provides a cohesive set of 49 actions focused on environmental education and stewardship.
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Vancouver's Urban Forest Strategy provides tools for growing and maintaining a healthy, resilient urban forest for future generations. Review the strategy to learn how we plan to protect, plant, and manage Vancouver's urban forest.
The Vancouver Bird Strategy will work to create conditions for native birds to thrive in Vancouver.
Hastings Park / PNE Master Plan: The Fair in the Park — a 30-year initiative to transform the Hastings Park of today into a greener, year-round destination for park use, culture, sport, recreation, and fun.
Residents in Vancouver now have a new way to support the City of Vancouver’s goal to be the greenest city in the world by 2020, with the launch of the Treekeepers Program, which encourages residents and businesses to plant more trees on their property.
We design and build safe, nature-rich paths that encourage you to explore Vancouver without using your car through the Greenways program.
We are working with local organizations to make Vancouver’s parks and gardens friendlier to bumble bees, honeybees, butterflies, and other pollinators. Discover projects underway in your city.