At times of more extreme weather caused by climate change, the downside of dense cities with few green spaces and more paved surfaces is evident; extreme heat, flooding and reduced biodiversity. Blue Green City Lab is a test bed that evaluates new and proven ‘blue-green’ solutions to mitigate these effects.
The densification of cities leads to reduced space for green areas. To counteract this, vegetation can instead be located on walls and roofs. Green walls and roofs, together with blue-green solutions on the ground, have several positive effects. They can slow down storm water resulting from heavy rain. They can reduce the temperature in urban heat spots in the city, reduce noise and scrub the air of pollutants. Furthermore, they have a positive effect on people’s wellbeing.
Blue-green solutions are a methodology that focuses on the adoption of nature-based solutions to the problems mentioned above, for instance by integrating green space, trees and natural drainage within urban environments. It’s an approach that encourages developers and planners to also consider the co-benefits for a wider group of stakeholders.
Testbed to find the right solutions
To increase blue-green solutions in cities, Blue Green City Lab evaluates different ideas to make it easier for building and real-estate companies to choose the right solutions for specific needs. The test bed matches providers of blue-green innovations with problem owners so they can cooperate on evaluation.
Examples of ongoing evaluations are green walls on multistorey car parks, trees planted in different substrates, planting boxes with water reservoirs and increasing ecosystem services in courtyards.
The evaluation cases are located in Malmö. Expertise from SLU (Swedish University of Agricultural Science), IVL (Swedish Environmental Research Institute) and the Scandinavian Green Roof Institute is involved in the testing and evaluation.