Green Roofs and Green Infrastructure at a Landscape Scale

Green Roofs and Green Infrastructure at a Landscape Scale

Wednesday, October 9th, 2013

The Ecology Consultancy and the Green Roof Consultancy have undertaken an audit of Green Infrastructure on behalf of Business Improvement Districts (BID) in Hammersmith, London Bridge and Bankside and will provide recommendations for enhancing urban greenspace. This is part of a London-wide initiative covering ten BIDs taking part in the Greater London Authority (GLA) ‘Drain London’ project.

The Ecology Consultancy and the Green Roof Consultancy have undertaken an audit of Green Infrastructure on behalf of Business Improvement Districts (BID) in Hammersmith, London Bridge and Bankside and will provide recommendations for enhancing urban greenspace. This is part of a London-wide initiative covering ten BIDs taking part in the Greater London Authority (GLA) ‘Drain London’ project.

Green roofs typically provide what the UK National Ecosystem Assessment and Millennium Ecosystem Assessment term as ‘regulating services’. Services covering noise, air, water and climate control are of particular importance in the urban environment. The design of our built environment has led to a concentration of ‘sealed surfaces’ and this, coupled with the effects of climate change on rainfall, is likely to increase peak rainfall rates by 40%. As a result our cities are now faced with more regular flooding.

This exciting project is being led by our Senior Ecologist Ben Kimpton, who will consider the elements that form the network of natural and semi-natural spaces in these districts.

The long-term aim of the project is to increase the quality and quantity of green space and enable climate change adaptation, by increasing vegetated cover in the Central Activity Zone by 5% by 2030, in line with the London Plan. We will examine the contribution of trees to the urban landscape and their vital role in reducing the effects of storm water flooding, providing wildlife habitat and green corridors, minimising the urban heat island phenomena and improving the environment for residents, business and visitors. We will also make recommendations on to create new habitats such as green walls, green roofs and rain gardens.

The Ecology Consultancy is able to offer state of the art GIS services for such projects. A digital map created by the company Bluesky International Ltd, called ProximiTREE, marked the location of private realm trees identified from aerial photographs, and includes measurements of tree height and canopy extent. The maps complimented data already held by project partners London Borough of Southwark and the Greater London Authority. These, and our own data collected during field surveys, these were processed using our in-house Geographical Information System (GIS) programme – ESRI’s ArcView.

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