Planning for nature in 4 steps

How can the nature conservation targets in a spatial development plan be achieved and be optimally linked with future functions?

Our point of departure is that every design contains the spatial requirements needed to achieve the proposed nature conservation objectives. We have simplified the spatial requirements for the various nature conservation objectives used in the Netherlands and have assembled them in a unique database.

As well as providing clear guidance, the “Planning for nature” stepwise plan also contains ecological information.

In the Netherlands it is often impossible to achieve a contiguous area of nature reserve. Usually, we have to deal with fragmented habitat patches. But by interconnecting these areas by means of corridors, green/blue veining or stepping stones, we can create an ecological network in which species can exist sustainably. The size and shape of a functioning ecological network may vary, depending on the selected nature conservation target and level of ambition. We have created ecoprofile matrices of the associated norms (the spatial requirements). The norms in these matrices indicate whether a selected nature conservation target is realistic and attainable. In addition, we have devised simple rules for designing spatial solutions systematically.

In ecological networks, nature conservation can often be combined successfully with other functions, such as recreation. Knowledge of the specific spatial requirements of spatial functions makes it easier to negotiate with other actors and to find possible combinations of functions.

Resources are available for each step. Designers can opt to use this approach themselves, or under our supervision. If required, we will provide recommendations for the desired composition of the groups of designs. We can be called in to assist with the process whenever you wish.

"Planning for nature" is a series of 4 steps:

  1. Formulate the nature conservation target
  2. Diagnose the current situation
  3. Design the solutions
  4. Select and combine