Landscape Planning and Ecological Networks. Part A. A Rural System in Nuoro, Sardinia
AbstractUrban-rural landscape planning research is nowadays focusing on strategies and tools that support practitioners in designing integrated spaces starting from the analysis of local areas, where human and natural pressures interfere. A prominent framework is provided by the ecological networks, whose design regards the combination of a set of green areas or patches (the nodes) interconnected through environmental corridors (the edges). Ecological networks are useful for biodiversity protection and enhancement, as they are able to counteract fragmentation, and to create or strengthen relations and exchanges among otherwise isolated elements. Biodiversity evolution, indeed, depends on the quantity and quality of spatial cohesion of natural areas. In this paper, we aim at designing an ecological network for the periurban area on the town of Nuoro in central Sardinia. The narrative unfolds in two parts. Part A is presented in this paper and includes its methodological premises, i.e. biodiversity conservation and ecological network analysis and design, and the introductory elements of a spatial analysis on a pilot ecological network of one hundred patches. We locate patches by focusing on the ecosystems supported by the target vegetal species holm oak (Quercus ilex) and cultivated or wild olive (Olea europaea var. sativa, O. europaea var. sylverstis). These are very common plants species in the municipality and some animal species are active as seed dispersal. The reminder, i.e. Part B, of the essay is presented in an homonymous paper that focuses on the illustration of the network analysis conceived as a monitoring system and, in future perspective, as a planning support system.
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