The real value of public parks
The Cabe team at the Design Council explain why traditional accounting methods are unhelpful when valuing public parks.
Anyone who has visited a garden centre knows how much trees, shrubs, paving and other landscape features cost. Stocking even a modest garden can set you back hundreds of pounds. So it may come as a shock to learn that most councils value public parks at just £1 each.
Even the largest, most spectacular park, with beautiful mature trees, well-established shrubs, paths, benches and a bandstand, is usually valued on a council’s list of assets at just £1. Why do they do this? What are the implications for maintenance and investment?
The real value of public parks explains why traditional accounting methods are unhelpful when valuing assets – such as parks – that can appreciate over time. It suggests a new way of valuing our parks which takes better account of the financial value they bring to society.
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