The first feasibility study and audit of the potential for green roofs in Brighton has been published.
The study examined a study area in Central Brighton, to assess the potential benefits of establishing green roofs.
It finds that 61 hectares of roofs in Central Brighton are suitable for retrofitting with green roofs, in a way which brings nature, summer cooling and storm water management benefits and improves the attractiveness of the cityscape.
This is equivalent to 87 football pitches-worth of new green roof space in the 9km2 area of the city that runs between the West pier and Dyke Road, and from Bear Road to Kemptown.
This area is highly urbanised, is susceptible to surface water flooding, and has limited open green space.
More on the benefits:
- In terms of urban drainage benefits, it is estimated that 61ha of ‘biodiverse’ green roofs could attenuate between 3507.5m³ and 244,000m3 of storm water. In other words, up to 100 Olympic swimming pools of water would be held back from the city’s roads and drains at peak times. This could have a significant combined effect in reducing flooding and the need for additional, costly, engineering infrastructure.
- Approximately 2.3MWh of electricity could be saved every year on cooling costs for buildings – via reduced or avoided air conditioning.
- Greening roofs would also reduce the Urban Heat Island Effect, potentially providing an additional saving in cooling costs in the region of 1.3million kWh per annum.
- The centre of Brighton would be far more attractive at roof level.
This work should be of interest to planners, architects, developers, environmentalists, householders and city businesses.
Download the Brighton Green Roof Audit
The study was prepared by Ben Kimpton (Senior Ecologist – The Ecology Consultancy) and The Green Roof Consultancy, it was supported by Matthew Thomas (former Ecologist – Brighton & Hove City Council), James Farrell (Chair – Brighton and Hove Building Green), Dusty Gedge (Founder – Livingroofs.org and Director – The Green Roof Consultancy) and Lee Evans (Director – Organic Roofs).