We all know that to fully realise the potential of green infrastructure across our ever expanding urban environments, new and adaptive funding mechanisms must be put in place to ensure the long term maintenance of the nature based solutions implemented. The planning system must be responsive to the constantly changing demands of our urban communities. The regeneration of vast swathes of the UK’s South Bank in London, particularly the Nine Elms development with collaboration between the private and public sectors, demonstrates how the most up-to-date stormwater management schemes connect and rejuvenate communities.
At GreenBlue Urban we have long advocated creative and innovative approaches to integrating sustainable urban drainage (SuDs) into new developments and retrofit schemes. Our SuDs compatible structural support modules, combined with the ArborFlow system, are testament to our continued commitment to ensuring that the green and the blue are seamlessly merged into the design of our urban spaces.
We work to ensure that during the entire process of making healthier cities, we take advantage of the existing natural capital locked into every urban environment.
Affordable housing schemes, as well as commercial and recreation areas will all be linked together with aesthetic and practical linear parks and green spaces to ensure that the design of this project is not a discrete and fragmentary attempt to regenerate.
Ballymore is an international property development company with a reputation for innovative projects that push boundaries and invigorate cities. We sat down with Tristan Stout, a Senior Development Manager at Ballymore, who has been heavily involved in the Nine Elms project.
“We have ensured that Embassy Gardens integrates effective water management throughout through green roofs and rainwater gardens in the new streets of Embassy Gardens and through the landscape design of Nine Elms Park. Collaboration with Thames Water has enabled these features to be integrated into a strategic surface water network, which does not just reduce the flow, but removes it entirely from the existing network. This collaborative approach is one we hope will be replicated throughout London to make the city more resilient to future climate change challenges,” Tristan explains.
The interaction between green and blue and conventional ‘grey’ transport infrastructure was also an important consideration in the master planning stage. A leading economic consultancy believes that extending the London Undergound’s “Northern Line” to Nine Elms could inject between £1.6bn and £7.9bn in growth to the UK economy. The independent report by Volterra Partners says the economic benefits of building the two new Tube stations would pay for the scheme between three and nine times over.
We have always understood the necessity for integrated infrastructure solutions, particularly soil support systems, to be designed to accommodate transport infrastructure and utilities. The future of our sustainable growth and development depends on industry responsiveness to this fact. GreenBlue’s work at King’s Cross was a springboard for our long term ambitions to be at the forefront of the transformation of our transport infrastructure.