We were sad to see Tim Hogg depart for the sandier climes of Devon at the end of April.Tim started out as a GiGL volunteer but quickly became a member of staff and worked in a couple of different roles before becoming GiGL’s Senior Information Officer. During his time with us,Tim did a fantastic job of developing an audience for our regional open space and green infrastructure dataset. He also successfully set up GiGL’s new Open Space Data Advisory Group. We hope to keep Tim involved in GiGL’s work, albeit remotely, and wish him and his family well in their relocation adventure.
Ensuring biodiversity is considered during the planning process
Aldo Tanca, GiGL’s Planning Officer, recently analysed the London region’s development control statistics. During the period of October 2008 to September 2009, over 69,000* planning applications were made. During the same period, GiGL undertook just over 380 data searches to inform planning applications in London. Of course not all planning applications will affect biodiversity on site and further afield, but there’s still a huge disparity between the two figures.
So how can we improve the situation?
One of the conditions of data supply to GiGL partners is that enquiries must be passed on to the GiGL team who will deal with them accordingly. Our partners gain access to data and associated services for their geographic remit at full resolution. Enquiries from outside the partnership will gain access to exactly the same data, but interpreted to meet their requirements. This data are presented at a resolution that is in accordance with our accessing data policy. The fee that we charge for the service covers the time taken to deliver the report and makes a contribution to the costs of data management.
If you work for a local authority in London, we will soon be offering access to the planning application screening tool as part of the suite of data services we provide under our service level agreements. For further information on this work, please see ‘Planning for the Future‘ in Issue 7 of the GiGLer
* These figures are based on applications submitted. Not all were granted permission.
Open Space Data Advisory Group
GiGL recently established an open space data advisory group.The remit of the group includes helping the team develop the audience for our open space and green infrastructure based services, and to develop policies that will ensure the draft regional open space database becomes a reliable and up-to-date dataset that can inform regional and local green infrastructure projects.
Members of the new group include CABE Space, London Parks and Green Spaces Forum, Natural England, Environment Agency, Transport for London, Design for London, and the Greater London Authority.