We have already spoken on this blog about how cities are changing and how the green areas will play, in urban areas, an increasingly central role of aggregation and sociality.
A city park is an ecosystem consisting of trees, meadows, shrubs, ponds, animals, insects and micro-organisms that favors biodiversity and helps to reduce atmospheric pollution. But the role of urban parks has gradually changed since they were introduced in a mass way in the mid-twentieth century. A modern park must be equipped to be fully usable by citizens, so it must include paths, roads, parking lots, urban furniture, recreational facilities and services. From purely naturalistic environments, places of escape born in contrast to the congested urban centres, parks have evolved to become the so-called "open space" systems, centres designed for sharing common spaces and events (live concerts, for example ) as if they were green extensions of the cities, but without the machines.
In this sense, Millenium Park, hundreds of acres of green on its lakeside position in the centre of Chicago, is an ideal model of contemporary urban green. Opened in 2004, the park is largely suspended (it was built on the site of the old railway station) and includes a 10,000-seat open-air theatre designed by Frank Gehry, fountains, ponds, works of art, tracks of skating, architectural masterpieces, flowering gardens of perennial herbaceous, spaces dedicated to sport. Here every day there are thousands of tourists and people from Chicago and immediately the prices of houses in the area has skyrocketed, confirming that the green in the city is an added value that elevates the quality of life of everybody. Now all the urban redevelopment projects, even in Italy, can no longer be independent from the design of new high quality public parks.
The downside is that parks so "experienced" and user friendly involve a more rigorous and punctual maintenance (many areas of the Millennium are cleaned several times a day) and this necessarily includes also the green works.
Containing costs without losing quality from the green will be the challenge of the future, and a key role will also be played by the management of turf, which often occupy the largest number of square metres in a park. Probably, all the public green will move towards a programmed and centralized management of green maintenance (the more provident cities are already being equipped) while the robotic technologies will be increasingly used in the field, with drones, sensors, tablets and robots remotely controlled that will provide for the maintenance and collection of data on the state of health of plants.
It is no coincidence that in 2017 the robotic lawnmowers are, among all the garden machines, the ones that recorded the most significant growth compared to 2016 (forecast for the European market about + 25%). Even Zucchetti Centro Sistemi is ready to meet the maintenance challenge, with a range of robotic lawnmowers ranging from the lawn patch to the golf course. Ambrogio L400 Elite, the top of the range, is a robot for very large surfaces, also used for flying fields and soccer fields, and is the only one on the market able to manage autonomously up to 30,000 square meters of turf with millimeter precision, thanks to the advanced navigation system without installation.
Credits Images "Pixabay"