The first visuals of York’s new community woodland have been released.
Under the plans, 50,000 trees would be planted by spring 2023, increasing to 80,000 in total, to develop a natural landscape free for residents and visitors to enjoy.
Next steps for the woodland project include planting 17,500 trees and creating the main pathways, starting in November 2021.
City of York Council says the area will serve as a new green space for the city, increasing the amount and quality of diverse habitats for wildlife. It will also improve the city’s air quality, with the woodland acting as a carbon sink absorbing some of the emissions produced in York.
Future plans for the area, west of Knapton, outlined in a report considered by the council on Wednesday (8 September), include:
- cycle paths
- play areas
- sensory gardens
- wooded areas
- wildflower meadow
- a café
- commercial area
- forestry school
Forestry England will be confirmed as the delivery partner for York Community Woodland at Wednesday’s decision session for the executive member for environment and climate change, Cllr Paula Widdowson.
The partnership will see Forestry England spend £2 milion to develop and manage the woodland, with the council retaining annual income and control through a management board.
Cllr Widdowson said: “The new community woodland is a flagship scheme in our efforts to make York an even greener and cleaner city for generations to come.
“As well as providing health and wellbeing benefits to the community, this woodland will create valuable habitats for wildlife and store carbon in the trees we grow.”