Indoor green infrastructure

Greening for wellbeing – strategic planting is an essential building service

Greening our built environment and integrating plants strategically as part of the building service solution is imperative to meet multiple targets and standards, from increasing health and wellbeing to reducing carbon emissions.

Traditionally plants are incorporated into building designs for aesthetic reasoning and as an addition to the building fabric. Greenery has the power to function as a building service in many ways, from regulating temperature, to use as external cladding to air conditioning.

The Green Infrastructure Design Challenge, organised by the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE), ARCC and UKCIP tasks people to re-imagine the use of plants in building design and implement them as a building service.

London South Bank University (LSBU) is happy to be a part of the Green Infrastructure Design Challenge for the third year running. LSBU is committed to supporting innovation, and challenging the status quo through academic-industry collaboration. The team sit on campus in the Clarence Centre for Enterprise and Innovation. The building has been the subject of the challenge for the past three years as it has some interesting features.

The Clarence Centre is located in central London on St George’s Circus, a major interchange south of Waterloo. The building was renovated in 2014 and converted the old Duke of Clarence Pub and a line of terrace houses into the Innovation Centre it is now. The offices are on the second floor; they are shallow in plan and are naturally ventilated, with opening windows on to the busy London Road and on the other side to a quiet courtyard.

The Clarence Centre and its occupants are currently subject to a number of research projects including the EPSRC funded project Managing Air for Green Inner Cities (MAGIC) and an LSBU sponsored PHD with the Blind and Shutters Association, which will determine the impact of blinds on internal environmental quality and occupant satisfaction and performance. The office’s indoor environmental quality has also been tested by an LSBU tenant in the University Technopark CETEC.

The Sustainable Communities Institute at LSBU is happy to be a part of the Green Infrastructure Design Challenge, and for the offices to be subject to what we expect will be, outstanding interventions using green infrastructure. We look forward to seeing the designs.

The 2018 Green Infrastructure Design Challenge was launched at CIBSE Build2Perform Live and is open for entry to individuals or teams. Closing date for entries is 19 February 2018 and shortlisted designs will be showcased and the winner announced at ecobuild 2018 (Excel, London, 06–08 March). Find out more about the competition.

The Sustainable Communities Institute provides access to LSBU expertise and facilities to support the development of novel solutions to sustainability problems in the built environment.

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