Soil and the City

October 20, 2011

Past Event: London Southbank University, Monday 10th October.

RTPI London invited five green infrastructure professionals to discuss different approaches to Green Infrastructure planning, at an afternoon seminar held at London Southbank University.

 Mike Henderson, Sustainability Consultant at AECOM set the strategic context and rationale for GI planning, citing the benefits that may be brought about, from reducing the urban heat island effect, to reducing flood risk. He identified a range of planning tools to bring forward GI within Local Plans and developments, citing AECOM projects including the Black Country Green Infrastructure Strategy, and the Olympic Legacy Communities Scheme Green Infrastructure Strategy recently submitted in support of the Outline Planning Applications for nearly 7,000 new homes to be brought forward on the Olympic Park.

 Honore van Rijswijk of Design for London set out work currently ongoing to produce the All London Green Grid Strategy which will provide Supplementary Planning Guidance for the London Plan. This sets out a range of interlinked green infrastructure projects across London based upon the success of the East London Green Grid.

Gary Grant, an independent ecologist and green infrastructure expert set a range of development specific initiatives and highlighted the multitude of benefits that can be brought about, from the provision of green roofs, to the incorporation of rain gardens within the streetscape.

GI case studies were then set out by Samantha Lyme of Natural England, and Valerie Beirne of Bankside Urban Forest.

Samantha set out the work currently ongoing by the Victoria Business Improvement District in utilise GI techniques to assist in the regeneration of the area around Victoria Station. This work has included a comprehensive audit of the potential for green roofs and other greening techniques that has highlighted that an area the size of Regents Park could be greened in this part of London.

Valerie Beirne identified a range of grassroots projects that have taken place as part of the Bankside Urban Forest Initiative which has sought to attract funding for community greening in the area south of the Tate Modern. This has included public realm schemes which have been successful in attracting forestry commission funding (a mean feat for urban south London), pop-up gardens and collaborative working with developers to green the environment.

 Full presentations can be found on the RTPI London homepage:



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