The NSW Department of Planning and Environment (DP&E) has recently embarked on a number of greening and open space programs as part of a planned approach to growth in Sydney. One of these programs will deliver Five Million Trees for Greater Sydney by 2030 aiming to more than double the current urban tree canopy of greater Sydney, from 16.8% to 40% over the next 12 years. The trees will be planted in a number of locations on public and private land, and will require collaboration between local and state government, the private sector, organisations, community groups, schools and residents.
Planning & Environment needed a website as a primary communication tool to engage the various user groups with information and features including Register Your Tree, Tree Finder, video and ability to expand the site’s functionality in Stage 2, when more time was available for consultation and feature specification.
Art of Multimedia designed and developed the first stage of the website within 6 weeks, to meet Ministerial launch deadline, even as content was being developed and the data for Tree Finder gathered.
The stage 1 website includes a video landing page and a user centered design which engages the visitors through ‘why we are doing this’ and ‘how you can get involved’. The Tree Finder is a feature which helps community members find a tree that is suitable for their area, allowing them to refine their search by a number of criteria, including exotic or native, availability of the sun and even water requirements, thus helping them to make better tree planting choices. Trees which were planted can be registered, to serve as a measure of progress and a tool for maintaining community’s engagement with the program, gathering as well as displaying data.
The site has been well received, with individuals and organisations using the tree finder and registering their plantings. Stage 2 website will follow and include additional resources, so keep checking in and planting trees.