Not existing prior, the SLP provides a Landscape Vision for Alandale that ensures site integrity is maintained when managing existing assets and considering proposed developments. The Landscape Vision aligns with the Alandale Foundation Trust (Trust) purposes and Alandale Lifecare management requirements. The Alandale Landscape Vision is:
“Alandale promotes healthy outdoor living, where the grounds stimulate the senses and imagination, promote wellbeing and community engagement in an open parkland setting. The landscape has a coherent visual amenity that enhances the dwellings and overall Village marketability, offering Space, Grace and Place to residents and visitors.”
Based on the Landscape Vision, a number of short- and long-term strategies, to be implemented over a 1 -10 year period, were recommended with indicative implementation processes. As implementation will have associated costs, these strategies need to be prioritised to identify best return on investment and annual budget allocation. The primary strategies are:
The SLP is a strategic document, offering a guiding principle that will need to be reviewed periodically to ensure it aligns with Alandale requirements and market expectations. An Operational Landscape Plan is now required to prioritise and plan the improvement strategies over a 5- 10-year period, develop cost estimates for budget forecasting and identify resource requirements.
Alandale’s website promotes the Village environment as a place where people can:
"Retire to an active community nestled away on the banks of the Waikato river. You’ll enjoy a social lifestyle as well as the financial freedom that comes from owning your own unit. Alandale village is nestled away on the shores of the Waikato river and provides peaceful retirement living in either one of our 133 Villas, or one of our Serviced Apartments.
All residents at Alandale benefit from an independent lifestyle while still being close to activities, facilities and people that ensure that you won't be bored.”
And, the Alandale Foundation Trust’s purposes (as stated in the O.R.A.) are:
The Landscape Vision statement needs to align with these purposes. It gives direction for how the landscape is to be managed and helps provide inspiration during change.
From a management perspective, the Landscape Vision assists with making strategic and operational decisions. The Vision is referenced when proposed works are being considered to ensure that these works align with the Vision and if not, either identify opportunities to align the works with the Vision or choose not to undertake them.
Ongoing development of Village landscapes encourages outdoor living and engagement with other residents, to safely exercise within Alandale and access the public walkway along the Waikato River. Furthermore, Vitamin D is improved when the forearm underside is exposed to sunlight.
Stimulating the senses is essential to perpetuating people’s health and sense of well-being, especially when combined with landscape features that inspire the imagination and the latitude to have fun, such as a the bowling green, croquet and petanque. This is beneficial for residents, their visiting families and interaction with grandchildren and prospective buyers. For example, these could be from scented environments, plants with different foliage textures and colours, water features that create sound, sculptural artworks that stimulate imagination and opinion.
A number of studies have shown that spending time outside in a planted environment positively uplifts a person’s emotions and improves their sense of well-being. Engaging and sharing with others while doing this fosters a better sense of community. An onsite example would be the vegetable gardens beside the tennis courts; installing seating beside this would encourage people to engage with others and take respite from their endeavours.
Alandale already has an open parkland setting although this has been degraded over time with the removal of many trees. Parkland environments promote an appreciation of nature, especially with plants that exhibit colourful foliage and flower seasonal changes while offering wide spaces between these vertical elements that fosters security and trust through long line of sight. Park environments require a hierarchy of vertical planted elements (such as trees and shrubs) to provide visual structure, framing and focal points, separated by open grassed areas.
Coherence refers to the degree in which different landscape features associate spatially with one another. A landscape with high coherence infers that the components within the landscape visually integrate to create a wholeness that looks and feels right to the beholder and those using the space, instead of being disjointed and dissonant.
The saleability of both the Alandale Village concept and private dwellings is vital for positive returns on investment. The Trust’s common land surrounding private dwellings sets the stage and determines whether a prospective buyer would like to live in the Alandale environment. This correlates with positive brand development in the wider community through various media, and offers good promotional opportunities.
Much of the treed network has been removed and many that remain are nearing the end of their life cycle or are a health hazard. Staged removal is required, replacing with a strong treed framework that has minimal visual impact on long views of the river environment and does not damage infrastructure. Primary trees will have 50+year expected life spans to maximise return on investment.
Landscape Vision Alignment:
Engagement Areas Key: High Priority (Red), Medium Priority (Orange), When Feasible (Yellow)