Flagship Group Urban Wilding

Greengage worked closely with Flagship Homes and Levitt Bernstein to undertake an urban wilding experiment amongst Flagship’s housing assets.

Flagship Group wants to play its part in tackling the biodiversity and climate crisis: “15% of species within the UK are said to be threatened with extinction, while 97% of British wildflower meadow has been lost in the last century. And with our hope to achieve net zero by 2030, we know that we want to do more to make our homes and communities greener and more sustainable.”

In partnership with Flagship and Levitt Bernstein, Greengage supported on the design and set up of the urban wilding project, which hopes to look at the different ways that Flagship can maximise biodiversity and user experience amongst their public realm.

Urban wilding is a process of transforming uniform green spaces in a neighbourhood and allowing nature to play a bigger role, with the aim of maximising the benefit of these spaces for residents and biodiversity.

Through this project, not only do we want to explore the ways we can offer the most for biodiversity, but also create green spaces where the local community can enjoy and interact with nature.

Over a third of the outdoor space that Flagship maintains is intensively mowed grass, which offers limited benefit to nature and human wellbeing. Flagship was keen to assess how it can manage its land more sustainably, to make space for people and nature alike. We therefore designed a programme of different green space management types in order to study the biodiversity, social and carbon outcomes of each.

For each site we designed a scientifically robust approach to measuring change in biodiversity and carbon storage and sequestration potential, using field data including soil sample analysis. The soil carbon aspect is particularly innovative in this context and stands to shed light on how changes in management of our urban green spaces can influence carbon storage and capture at scale.

We’re excited to continue our work on this project and start to collect and analyse initial results in 2023.

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