Uplace cares about man and the environment and is therefore committed to finding ways that can help to create a healthy living environment for Machelen and the surrounding area. Mobility studies have shown that the project won’t have an adverse impact in terms of fine particles. But that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t question the status quo. Uplace is also investigating how we can help solve this societal problem. One possible plan is functional greenery. At the same time, we are also happy to discuss the matter with the automotive sector. We shall keep you informed about all related developments.
Functional greenery as a weapon in the battle for better air quality
An expert in ‘functional greenery’ Elma Schoenmakers says: “The impact of traffic on the environment is clearly an important issue, but the development of this area can limit much of that impact. Functional Greenery tactics (already applied in Antwerp and Ghent) are an important key element in this context. (www.functioneelgroen.nl). For instance: a highly dense green screen can provide protection for the area behind it, ensuring that the air there doesn’t get polluted. And one relatively small tree with a 30-cm diameter trunk can absorb up to 20 kg of fine particles a year, the equivalent of 3 000 kilometres travelled by car. Shrubs and even ground cover absorb exhaust fumes, tyre wear and road particles. The location of the vegetation plays an important role in this context. In some cases, green roofs and walls are the best solution as they act as a filter while giving the wind free play. Also, each type of vegetation has its own abilities. The right tree in the right place will guarantee the best effect. The current scaremongering is definitely not the best way to support construction projects. Instead, we should think ahead, make maximum use of green technology and create nice places.”