«Lists of figures, plans, tables and appendices ii Glossary vii Executive Summary viii 1 Introduction 1 2 Undertaking the Study 9 3 Strategic Context ...»
• prepare a strategy to develop a network of pedestrianised streets, civic squares and amenity spaces that link to other blue and green infrastructure both within and surrounding the city centre;
• plan for the future role of green and blue infrastructure in Leeds City Centre in combating the effects of climate change.
Summary of Key Issues District Wide and by Area
13.14 Leeds is in the fortunate position of possessing a good overall provision of green space. As table 13.3 below demonstrates, the city compares favourably against other local authority’s green space provision where this information is available. This is influenced by the presence of the six large city parks and the many large natural spaces on the edge of the urban area.
The key issue for Leeds is the uneven distribution, varying quality and type of this provision at a local level.
Table 13.3 Comparison with other Local Authorities – Existing Provision (hectares per 1,000 population)
13.15 To understand the distribution at a more local level there follows a summary of the key green space and recreation issues for each of the ten analysis areas used in the study. The key issues emerging for each area are
Spatial Summary East Inner Lowest provision ratio (0.62 hectares per 1,000 population) and quantity (50 hectares) of Parks and Gardens (including city parks) of all ten areas. Access for residents is good, with most residents having access within 15 minutes walk to a park or multi facility recreation ground. Communities of Fearnville, parts of Seacroft and Aire Valley are all outside 15 minute walk time catchments to a park. Aire Valley to the South is an industrial area which currently does not have a residential population. Application of the standards would suggest that sites are over used and there should be greater provision, possibly by increasing the size of existing sites should the opportunity arise. However, the priority should be to focus on improving the quality of sites. With an average quality score of 5.3, and no single site satisfying the proposed quality standard there is a need to action improvements.
East Inner has the largest quantity (62.65 hectares) and ratio (0.78 hectares per 1,000 population) of amenity green space of the ten areas. Application of the amenity standard would indicate a surplus of 26.39 hectares. This quantitative surplus needs to be balanced with the deficit for Parks and Gardens of over 30 Nb. Leeds duplication of outdoor sports facilities provision is 0.46 hectares per 1,000 population.
These are outdoor sports facilities which are in typologies other than outdoors sport, ie. grass playing pitches in City Parks. This reduction has been applied to the overall provision figure.
hectares. Access to amenity space is good overall with only a limited number of residential areas (Harehills, Fearnville and Aire Valley) outside a 10 minute walk catchment to access amenity space. The residents in Harehills without access to an amenity green space have good access (less than 10 minutes) to Harehills Park which fulfils the function of amenity green space. The quality average for the area is
4.96 which is similar to the city average for amenity space which is 5.05. Only 6% of sites achieve the quality standard. The priority in East Inner should focus on raising the quality of the most valuable amenity spaces and consider which surplus sites are most equipped in terms of location, size and topography to be transformed into other open space types which are in deficit. Following this exercise it should be possible to identify spaces that are not required for amenity or any other open space use.
This area has 18,800 young people aged 0 to 16 year olds (mid year estimate 2008).
It has both the largest under 16 population and the largest proportion at 23% of total analysis area population. 10% of all fixed equipped play provision is in the area, but only 5% of children’s fixed play areas. Provision appears to focus on young people rather than young children. The area has the highest quantity of teen zones and the second highest provision of MUGAs. Application of the standard calculates that ten additional facilities are needed; the highest shortfall of any area. Here 79% of households are within 15 minutes of equipped play provision, however, the distribution of children’s play areas leaves the communities of Seacroft, Fearnville and part of Cross Gates outside the 15 minute walk time catchments. The current quality of provision has only been assessed on the space, which is not necessarily a reflection of the play facility. The average quality of green space sites with fixed play provision is 5.69 indicating that sites with such provision are of a slightly better quality than the average score for amenity and parks and garden sites. The priority should be to improve the distribution and increase the quantity of children’s fixed play areas.
Performance against the city average for the overall quantity of outdoor sports is slightly below at 1.5 hectares per 1,000 population. East Inner has a substantial deficit in overall outdoor sports provision of 29 hectares. However, due to larger accessibility catchments for outdoor sports facilities, the provision of the adjacent East Outer area also needs to be considered, which at a surplus of 20 hectares would appear to satisfy most of the shortfall if it is accessible to households of East Inner. All households are within a 10 minute drive of a council grass playing pitch and bowling green; 20 minutes drive to an athletics track, golf facility and synthetic pitch facility. Only the communities of Lincoln Green and Saxton Gardens have to walk further than 20 minutes to access an outdoor tennis court. Due to the influence of privately operated outdoor sports sites (including Education Leeds) the average quality score is raised to 5.5, but this is still the lowest of all areas. Raising the quality of existing sites should be the priority, although some deficiencies appear to exist. Further sports specific demand led research needs to be undertaken to fully understand the detailed sport specific nature of the apparent deficit.
There are 2.24 hectares of disused allotment sites which could create up to 80 full size plots in an area with a waiting list of 78 names. The provision ratio of all allotment sites is 0.14 hectares per 1,000 population. This reduces to 0.11 hectares per 1,000 population when considering only those sites in use. To achieve the proposed standard requires a further 10 hectares of allotment provision. This is the highest deficit of all areas. Residents in Seacroft, Killingbeck, Lincoln Green and Saxton Gardens have to travel further than a 15 minute walk to access existing in use sites. Although a new allotment is being provided as part of the comprehensive refurbishment works to Saxton Gardens. The average quality score for sites in use is the lowest of all the areas at 3.73.
East Inner has the largest deficiency of natural green space. The 54 hectares equate to a ratio of 0.76 hectares per 1,000 population, creating a shortfall of 131 hectares when assessed against the standard. The largest natural space is Wyke Beck Valley at 42 hectares. 72% of households in the area are within a 15 minute walk of a natural site. The communities of Cross Green, Lincoln Green, Saxton Gardens, parts of Crossgates and parts of Seacroft fall outside the 15 minute walk time catchment for natural green space. The average quality score is 3.4, none of the sites achieved the quality standard. The highest scoring site is at Killingbeck Business Park which scored 6.16. Application of the standards highlights the area is deficient in all aspects; the priority should be to improve the quality of existing sites, improve ecology value at sites in other space types where appropriate and address the quantitative deficiency by creating new sites in the areas of greatest deficiency.
There are two council indoor leisure facilities; Fearnville Leisure Centre and Richmond Hill Recreation Centre. Most households have 15 minute public transport access to council sports halls. Access to swimming pools and gyms is not as comprehensive due to the restricted range of facilities available at Richmond Hill Recreation Centre. Households in North Seacroft, Cross Green and East End Park all have to travel further than 15 minutes. The quality of council provision is 4.44 for Fearnville and 5 for Richmond Hill. Both sites are in need of substantial refurbishment to satisfy the proposed quality standard. Application of the standards would suggest a need to replace Richmond Hill Recreation Centre with a larger facility including a wider range of sport facilities and improve the quality at Fearnville Leisure Centre.
Below average provision ratio (0.82 hectares per 1,000 population) and quantity (70 hectares) of Parks and Gardens (excluding city parks). However, when including Temple Newsam (the largest of the city parks at 340 hectares) the ratio of parks provision increases to 4.8 hectares per 1,000 population. Access for residents is good, with most households having access within 15 minutes walk to a park, city park or multi facility recreation ground. Communities in Swillington and Eastern Kippax are outside the 15 minute walking catchments. With an average quality score of 5.82, and only 7% of parks achieving the standard, there is a need to action quality improvements. The priority should focus on raising the quality and access to existing provision and using new allocations to locate new green space provision to improve accessibility.
At 36 hectares and a ratio 0.42 hectares per 1,000 population of amenity green space, the area has a very small deficit compared to the proposed standard.
Access to amenity space is good overall with only a limited number of settlements (East of Garforth and areas of Kippax) outside a 10 minute walk catchment to access amenity space. The residents in both Eastern Garforth and Northern Kippax have access to park sites within 10 minutes to supplement these minor deficits. The quality average for the area is 5.12, with 11% of sites already attaining the proposed standard. The priority should be raising the quality of existing sites.
East Outer has one of the largest populations of 0 to 16 year olds (17,043 using the mid year estimate 2008). The area has the largest number of children’s equipped play areas at 26. This contributes to the overall total of 40 children’s and young people’s equipped play facilities, giving the area the highest amount of provision for all facilities within Leeds. Application of the standard calculates that the area currently has six facilities in excess of the proposed standard. This is a reflection of the provision of children’s play areas in smaller villages and settlements whereby every settlement has at least one play facility irrespective of the local demographic composition. Here 78% of households are within 15 minutes of equipped play provision, however, the distribution of children’s and young people’s play facilities means the communities of Northern and central Kippax are outside the 15 minute walk time catchment. The current quality of provision has only been assessed on the space which is not necessary a reflection of the play facility itself. The average quality of green space sites with fixed play provision is 5.72 indicating that sites with fixed play provision are usually of better quality than the average amenity and parks and garden green space. The priority should be improve the distribution of children’s and young people’s fixed play areas as and when opportunities arise.
Performance against the city average for the quantity of outdoor sports is above standard at 2.1 hectares per 1,000 population. It has a surplus in overall outdoor sports provision of 20 hectares when compared to the standard. Households have good overall access to all outdoor sport facilities except tennis courts. The communities of Swillington, Eastern Garforth and Methley are all outside the 20 minute walk time standard. The average quality score performs well at 6.36; slightly below the city outdoor sports average with only 31% of sites achieving the standard.
Raising the quality of existing sites should be the priority. Further sports specific demand led research is needed to fully understand the detailed nature of the apparent surplus. The shortfall in the adjacent East Inner area may contribute to additional demand for the facilities in East Outer.
There is good provision of allotment sites at 0.27 hectares per 1,000 population.
There is only one large 2.24 hectares disused allotment sites which has been returned to growing agricultural crops and is unlikely to be available for allotment use in the plan period. Despite this apparent good provision there is still 152 names on the waiting list; a strong indication that increased provision is required. Households in Swarcliffe, Western Garforth, Temple Newsam, Manston and parts of Austhorpe and Cross Gates have to travel further than a 15 a minute walk to access existing in use sites. The average quality score for sites is slightly below the city average at
4.78. Only 4% of allotment sites achieved the quality standard. Application of the standard highlights the area is deficient in both access and quality. In addition, despite satisfying the quantity standard more sites should be created to both improve access and reduce the waiting list. The priority should be to identify new sites in areas of poor access and improve the quality of existing sites by tackling security and facilities provision such as a water supply.