Landscape Planning Services
ESP believes in a partnership approach to planning and designing sustainable landscapes. We work together with our clients, design teams
and authorities to create solutions that add value to the development, the environment and wider society.
ESP has gained considerable experience in the planning and implementation of minerals, waste management and other large scale rural developments since the Company’s inception in 2004, working with a wide range of mineral types across Britain. Our range of services include: preparation of feasibility studies where landscape issues are a particular constraint; design of volumetrically balanced working and restoration schemes using digital terrain modelling; landscape and visual impact assessment; landscape and ecological management plans and restoration audits.
Our philosophy is that landscapes are dynamic palimpsests, where character and sense of place must be respected, but where it is possible to improve biodiversity and green infrastructure. We see well-planned mineral developments that inevitably change the landscape as potential opportunities to stimulate landscape regeneration, particularly where the existing setting has been degraded by intensive farming.
Our experience in reclamation, minerals and waste planning has led to involvement in landscape led master planning for new and innovative after uses. We have an understanding of several associated disciplines such as hydrology, ecology, civil, highway and geotechnical engineering. Our ability to co-operate across the disciplines to create an integrated design is inherent to our partnership approach.
ESP has a wealth of experience in scoping, preparing and reviewing Landscape and Visual Impact Assessments and Appraisals for planning applications and inquiries, wholly consistent with the latest industry guidelines produced by the Landscape Institute and IEMA. We understand the value of the iterative process by which environmental impact assessment informs good environmental design.
We undertake thorough desk studies and field work to describe the baseline environment in terms of landscape fabric and character and the existing types and levels of visual amenity. Where appropriate, photomontages are prepared at various development stages using detailed digital terrain models developed for the planning application. We also understand that judging the significance of landscape and visual effects requires a fully justified explanation of the methodology and a professional narrative of the judgement. We always work on the basis that we may have to defend our assessments at planning inquiry.
ESP works with private developers and local planning authorities to assess the potential landscape and visual effects of proposed developments. We prepare planning applications and environmental impact assessments for developers as well as review the same on behalf of local planning authorities. We also act as expert witness in landscape and visual matters at planning inquiry. Our collective experience of acting for both private and public sectors in this regard has been valuable and insightful.