CABE highlights climate change initiatives

Government design chiefs have singled out the world's top initiatives for fighting the climate crisis and are insisting on the urgency for green strategies.

Among CABE's top 10 was Manchester, which uses "urban characterisation maps" on different land uses to forecast hazard, exposure and vulnerability.

Bristol and Chiswick were listed with Sydney and Portland. But there was no "one-size-fits-all" solution to adapting to climate change, said CABE's new report.

Entitled Public Space Lessons, the report added: "A green strategy or green infrastructure plan can help protect spaces that are critical to counteracting the so-called urban heat-island effect."

But well-designed, flexible public spaces were the best chance that towns and cities had of adapting to the changes, it stated.

"Spaces that are softer, greener, more organic and natural will store water and are critical to modifying urban temperatures."

However, CABE warned that existing planning policy, which threw emphasis on higher densities, would pile pressure on green spaces - and that landscape management of a flagship public park, Sydney Olympic Park in Australia, held the key to safeguarding valuable wildlife habitats.

In Britain, land freed up for Salford's flood-defence system on the River Irwell doubled up as a public open space with playing fields and a new sports village.

"Adapting for climate change often brings surprising extra economic, social and other environmental benefits," said CABE.


  • - Green Street, Portland
  • - Augustenbourg, Malmo, Sweden
  • - Business Park, Bristol
  • - CitySpace Plan, Chicago, US
  • - Chiswick Park, London
  • - Cleveleys Coast, Lancashire
  • - Forest, Milton Keynes Bedfordshire
  • - Olympic Park, Sydney, Australia
  • - River Irwell, Lancashire
  • - River Quaggy, Lewisham, London

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