Saint-Etienne, France
City population: 373538
Duration: 2016 – 2018
Implementation status: Completed
Scale: Micro-scale: District/neighbourhood level
Project area: 250000 m2
Type of area: Protected Area
Last updated: November 2021

The park of "Bois d'Avaize", with an area of 30 ha, is located south-east of Saint-Étienne on a hill site between 540 and 640 m altitude. A former mining site, operated from the 15th century until 1931, it was gradually reclaimed by vegetation before being converted into a municipal park in 1996 (Ref. 1). In 2016, the site was selected for the development of a project to enhance biodiversity by creating of a conservatory orchard, increasing amphibian-friendly habitats (with creation of ponds), and improving the connection of the park with the Pilat massif (a mountainous area) (Ref. 1). It is classified with the label "Natura 2000" for the conservation of natural environments for the richness of its fauna and flora (Ref. 1). Work was undertaken between 2017-2018 with management and monitoring set to occur from 2018-2050 (Ref. 1).


Nature-based solution

  • Parks and urban forests
  • Large urban parks or forests
  • Green corridors and green belts
  • Community gardens and allotments
  • Horticulture
  • Blue infrastructure
  • Lakes/ponds

Key challenges

  • Climate action for adaptation, resilience and mitigation (SDG 13)
  • Climate change mitigation
  • Green space, habitats and biodiversity (SDG 15)
  • Habitat and biodiversity restoration
  • Habitat and biodiversity conservation
  • Green space creation and/or management
  • Cultural heritage and cultural diversity
  • Preservation of natural heritage


Maintenance and management of urban nature, Protection of natural ecosystems, Monitoring of habitats and/or biodiversity

Project objectives

"For nature and territory: -To reinforce the biodiversity of the Parc du Bois d'Avaize, its connection to the Pilat massif and to raise public awareness of climate change." (Ref. 1) - Creation of green corridor to reconnect with the Massif Pilat that would favor frequentation by the fauna at night (Ref. 1) -Creation of a network of forest ponds will allow the development and reproduction of many floristic and faunistic species (including Amphibians). -Creation of a conservatory orchard: the objective is to present to the public who frequent the park another way of cultivating that allows the development of biodiversity and that could be more resilient to climate change (Ref. 1) -"The objectives of the project revolve around three axes: diversify the environment to strengthen the ecological attractiveness of the site; Create a conservatory orchard favorable to biodiversity; Reconnect the park to the Pilat massif (Ref. 1).

Implementation activities

"The actions undertaken will be based on three axes: -Diversify the environment to enhance the ecological attractiveness of the site, -Create a conservation orchard favorable to biodiversity -Reconnect the park to the Pilat massif." (Ref. 1) -"For biodiversity: - Diversify the environments to enhance the ecological attractiveness of the site, - Reconnect the park to the Pilat massif. For the climate: - Increase the carbon capture potential, - Adapt Avaize wood to climate change, - Create a conservatory orchard favorable to biodiversity. For the territory: - Raise public awareness of the environment and biodiversity, - Strengthen the integration of nature into the city" (Ref. 1) -"The objective is to present to the public who frequent the park, another way of cultivating allowing the development of biodiversity and which could be more resilient in the face of climate change. The actions carried out are inspired by permaculture methods to restore this black locust plantation in a conservatory orchard. This orchard will allow old varieties to be preserved and their development in the face of climate change to be monitored" (Ref. 1).

Climate-focused activities

Climate change mitigation:

  • Improve carbon sequestration through selection of more adaptable species

Biodiversity conservation or restoration-focused activities

Biodiversity conservation:

  • Protect and enhance urban habitats
  • Preserve and strengthen existing habitats and ecosystems
  • Preserve and strengthen habitat connectivity
  • Reduce negative impacts and avoid the alteration/damage of ecosystem
  • Protect species
  • Undertake specific measures to protect species
  • Undertake specific measures to protect native species
  • Undertake specific measures to protect valued species
  • Take measures for ex situ conservation
  • Means for conservation governance
  • Raise public awareness

Biodiversity restoration:

  • Rehabilitate and restore damaged or destroyed ecosystems
  • Public engagement

Main beneficiaries

  • National-level government
  • Local government/Municipality
  • Non-government organisation/Civil Society
  • Researchers/University
  • Citizens or community groups
  • Other


Management set-up

  • Co-governance with government and non-government actors

Type of initiating organisation

  • EU body
  • Local government/municipality

Participatory approaches/ community involvement

  • Dissemination of information and education
  • Consultation (e.g. workshop, surveys)

Details on the roles of the organisations involved in the project

Nature2050 (Recognized scientists, environmental specialists, conservation associations and experts from CDC Biodiversity are participating in this innovative program.) (Ref. 1). CDC Biodiversity behind the Nature 2050 (governed by Caisse des Depots, it acts in support of the policies of the State and territorial communities) (Ref. 1). Partners: "Saint Etienne Métropole" and "Transports Urbains Saint Etienne Metropole" (City agglomeration, and Urban transportation of the city) (Ref. 1). Nature 2050 projects are partially funded by private companies (Ref. 7).

Project implemented in response to ...

... an EU policy or strategy? Unknown
... a national policy or strategy? Yes (Nature2050 (Ref. 2).)
... a local policy or strategy? Yes (Nature en Ville (Nature in the City Plan) started in 2014 (Ref 3) Climate Plan of the City and section "Maintain Biodiversity and Climate Change Resilience" (Uploaded document "Letter of Climate Plant" in attachment, page 6))


Total cost


Source(s) of funding

  • Public national budget
  • Public local authority budget
  • Unknown

Type of funding

  • Earmarked public budget
  • Donations
  • Membership fees

Non-financial contribution


Impacts and Monitoring

Environmental impacts

  • Climate, energy and emissions
  • Enhanced carbon sequestration
  • Environmental quality
  • Improved soil quality
  • Water management and blue areas
  • Improved water quality
  • Green space and habitat
  • Increased number of protection areas
  • Increased green space area
  • Increased conservation or restoration of ecosystems
  • Increase in protected green space areas
  • Increased conversion of degraded land or soil
  • Reduced biodiversity loss
  • Increased number of species present
  • Increased protection of threatened species
  • Enhanced support of pollination
  • Increased spread of native/heirloom/open-pollinated seed
  • Increased ecological connectivity across regeneration sites and scales
  • Restoration of derelict areas
  • Other

Economic impacts

  • Unknown
  • Attraction of business and investment

Socio-cultural impacts

  • Education
  • Increased support for education and scientific research
  • Increased knowledge of locals about local nature

Type of reported impacts

Expected impacts, Achieved impacts

Presence of formal monitoring system


Presence of indicators used in reporting


Presence of monitoring/ evaluation reports

No evidence in public records

Availability of a web-based monitoring tool

No evidence in public records