The City of Sydney has released the final draft of its Urban Ecology Strategic Action Plan. Urban ecology is described as ‘the study of the relationship between living organisms and their environment in an urbanised context’. The City’s vision for the Plan ‘is to restore and conserve resilient urban ecosystems that support a diverse range of locally indigenous flora and fauna species, and in so doing to create a liveable City for all of its inhabitants’. (p4)
Glebe features significantly in the Plan. Our suburb holds a number of examples of remnant indigenous vegetation as well as planted and naturally regenerating plant communities. Most importantly, Glebe Foreshore Walk East to Orphan School Creek is nominated as one of the six high-priority sites identified to be given special attention for their biodiversity values.
Examples of indigenous vegetation in Glebe, either remnant or re-introduced, include: Sydney Turpentine Ironbark Forest species in Orphan School Creek and St John’s Anglican Church grounds; Coastal Saltmarsh along Johnstons Creek Canal and Rozelle Bay foreshore; possible remnant Eucalyptus botryoides in Lewis Hoad Reserve, and planted and naturally regenerating stands of Mangrove in Bicentennial Park and The Anchorage.
Glebe Foreshore Walk East to Orphan School Creek covers a number of pocket parks adjoining Johnstons Creek Canal – AV Henry Reserve, Minogue Crescent Reserve, Lewis Hoad Reserve, Canal Reserve, JV McMahon Reserve, Wigram Road Reserve and Spinder Reserve in Leichhardt LGA – as well as the major waterfront parks. This corridor is nominated as a high-priority site because it displays:
- a relatively continuous area of open space from the Glebe Foreshore to Forest Lodge, a distance of 2.5 kilometres
- remnant and re-introduced endangered species
- very high flora species diversity as a result of bushland restoration works
- diverse fauna habitat features
- high potential to expand bush restoration works
- the greatest potential to provide an almost continuous habitat corridor in the LGA
- potential for naturalisation of Johnstons Creek Canal.
The contribution of the Glebe Bushcare Group to bush regeneration along this corridor is acknowledged in several places in the Plan, as is the work of the Blue Wren Group at Paddy Gray Reserve.
Ernest Pedersen Reserve, in Ferry Road, is also given as an example of a pocket park at which habitat planting and other habitat enhancements could be undertaken.
Actions and timeframe, stretching over the next 10 years, for the enhancement of the Glebe Foreshore – Orphan School Creek corridor cover such things as the establishment of representative patches of likely original vegetation communities, incorporating bush restoration and habitat enhancement principles into landscaping of new open space, and naturalisation of Johnstons Creek Canal (already approved as part of the Johnstons Creek Parkland Masterplan).