Stages of design

Once the brief is agreed with the client or client body, the typical stages of design are as follows.

Survey/inventory key

First, information is collected on:

– physical aspects of the site, such as landform, geology and soils; water movement; terrain slopes and stability;

– ecological aspects, such as plant communities; wildlife use; sensitive sites; habitat dynamics, such as fire or insect attacks; pollution risks.

– cultural aspects, including traditional recreational uses and history; heritage and archaeological remains; previous land use; aesthetic/landscape qualities;

– recreational aspects, such as the potential of the area; limitations on

carrying capacity; safety issues; environmental education potential, including interpretation.

Analysis phase

Here the implications of the information are tested. This can be categorized into:

– landscape character, aesthetic qualities, views and eyesores;

– constraints and opportunities for development of the site for recreation and environmental education including locational conflicts, site constraints;

– ecological analysis of the likely changes tc plant communities and wildlife uses by various activities which might be developed, their location, places to avoided and management options to maintain biodiversity requirements.