Jeremy Barrell Endorses Silva Cells as a Green Solution For Car Parks

Silva Cell rendering

Jeremy Barrell, managing director at the Barrell Tree Consultancy, wrote in last week’s Horticulture Week about methods for greening car parks — including the Silva Cell.

Car parks (that’s a parking lot, for those of you stateside readers) are some of the toughest areas to integrate green infrastructure because the vast expanse of impervious surface must always be built on heavily compacted base in order to support static and dynamic loading. This requirement is also one of the very strongest reasons why car parks need trees — all that pavement absorbs and retains heat powerfully. If you’ve ever searched for a parking spot on a hot day, you know to always look for an area that has some shade. Imagine a car park where there are mature, large-canopy trees along every aisle!

Because the Silva Cell is considered functionally equivalent to a rain garden, only it is placed under ground, you can get the same benefits (manage stormwater on-site, reduce non-point source pollution, provide wildlife habitat, etc.) without sacrificing parking spots. This is a win-win for developers, who can use this technology improve the way their stores and parking lots look while simultaneously making them more functional for their clients and customers.

(Image courtesy of Sharp & Diamond Landscape Architects)

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