Situated on the Mediterranean Sea is the beautiful City of Dubrovnik, Croatia. A world heritage site, its medieval architecture dating back to the 7th century features polished cobbled streets, and this southern region has become a popular tourist destination.
The City has overcome many disasters over centuries; including large earthquakes and significant damage caused by the Croatian war of independence. Nevertheless, the city maintains its beauty and has become a world-famous filming backdrop to one of the most-watched TV series, Game of Thrones.
Croatia is home to a multitude of natural and tranquil green spaces, parks and tree-lined streets: with an average temperature in the high 20s, it is important that the trees reach their maximum canopy cover to give the optimum cooling effect – canopy cover can reduce temperatures by at least 12 degrees!
Extreme heat stress is a growing problem for cities across the world as the rise in temperatures continues due to climate change. Many policies and resources have become available for Croatian local authorities, architects and contractors including ‘The Strategy and action plan for the protection of biological and landscape diversity of the republic of Croatia’ created by the Ministry of environmental and nature protection. This document covers the long-term objective guidelines, values, and methods for social and cultural development within the city. Included are measures that need to be adhered to for protection against heat stress, sustainable water management, adaptation of transport infrastructure and improvement of energy infrastructure, all planned to assist with mitigation of climate change effects.
Croatia is included in the European Green Belt Initiative; the inclusion of tree planting and creating green spaces in the city is therefore vital.
GreenBlue Urban was enthused to work with the architects Proto-Arch and designers Studio Landa, who were said to go above and beyond to support GreenBlue Distributor Arboring to enable this high-end project and assisted with the design of the soil cell layout for the regeneration of the Frana Bulica car park.
Contractors, Texo Moilor installed the 100% recycled European manufactured Rootspace G1 tree planting soil cell, that is load-bearing and strong enough for vehicle overrun. The GreenBlue soil cell system has an unparalleled 20 years of proven success globally.
Frana Bulica car park sits high on the cliff tops overlooking the old town and the tree planting has to cope with the extreme Croatian coastal elements, from the high temperatures from the summer sun to the harsh sea winds. The chosen site has been transformed into a green-shaded parking oasis with a line of trees in the centre of the car park. Other important solutions vital to tree health in this scheme to enable the trees to grow to maturity include the RootRain Arborvent aeration system (keeping the soil aerated), the RootRain Urban irrigation system (maximising efficiency of water use) and the important ArborGuy underground guying system which helps maintain the trees in an upright position with expected wind gusts to exceed 200 km/h per annum at this coastal location.
This exemplar installation demonstrating the value placed on trees in warmer climates needs to be replicated in all our towns and cities if they are to be resilient to the effects of climate change. It can only be that unless we invest in best practice tree planting methodologies, we will continue to experience the negative effects of heat stress on not only our health but also our economies.
Healthy canopy cover encourages tourism, and inward investment and builds places and spaces that are pleasant and resilient in harmony with nature.