CIRIA’s biodiversity and green infrastructure site tour

CIRIA’s biodiversity interest group (BIG) organised a site tour on the 6th June around the King’s Cross development which is one of London’s largest development sites. The tour focused on the biodiversity enhancement that are being incorporated into the development and some of the innovative temporary measures on the site such as the temporary green wall and skip gardens.

The first location was the innovative temporary green wall (see fig. 1) located at Kier’s site office, this project was championed by Rachel Thompson of Kier Group plc. The concept behind this enhancement was to hide the concrete batter by creating a green wall out of disused material across form the site. Climbers have been planted so that over time this harsh concrete landscape can become a great visual aspect for the site workers.

The Skip Gardens were the next location where Jane Riddiford from the charity Global Generation (GG) explained how these gardens had been used to engage with young people from the local community and the construction workers. These gardens can be moved around the site and Argent the property developers for the site have helped to accommodate and assist this pop up green space on the site.


Fig 1: Highlights from the biodiversity and green infrastructure site tour

Alastair Mitchell and Tony Kitchen of Carillion then led the group to the green roof on the Carillion building (see fig. 1). Whilst on this roof we were also able to see two further green roofs that had been implemented on other buildings.

Following the green roofs the tour’s final stop was at Camley Street Natural Park via the Green Wall. The Green Wall is located opposite one of the current site entry’s which is a stark contrast to the trucks entering the site. Finally Camley Street Natural Park provided an oasis within the urban context and demonstrates how small patches of land can be transformed into an environmental haven.

CIRIA’s site tour highlighted how green infrastructure can be implemented at different scales across the built environment and during a construction project. Demonstrating that there is always a place for nature!