Pollution-busting project to green the area under Hammersmith flyover

Greening project makes area under Hammersmith flyover more pleasant

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news Transport and roads, Environment

A 'woodland garden' and ivy green screens are among the measures taken to fight air pollution under the flyover in Hammersmith. PICTURE: FIELDWORK FACILITY

A pollution-busting project to green the area under Hammersmith flyover has now been completed.

The scheme includes new ivy ‘green screens’, plants and bright artwork on the flyover’s grey concrete pillars will make walking and cycling in the town centre healthier and more pleasant.

Hammersmith & Fulham Council worked closely with HammersmithBid and St. Paul’s School, as it continues its bid to be the greenest borough in Britain.

Planters underneath Hammersmith flyover
New, large planters improve the feel and appearance, with plants specially selected for their ability to help absorb pollutants

“Air pollution is one of the biggest threats to the health of our residents,” said Cllr Wesley Harcourt, H&F Cabinet Member for Environment.

“That’s why we’re taking whatever steps we can to mitigate against the harm caused by the thousands of polluting vehicles coming to and passing through our borough.”

The area under Hammersmith flyover is dominated by cars and concrete and can be an inhospitable place for non-motorists. Air pollution is high due to the very high volumes of traffic passing over and underneath.

What has the project involved?

  • installation of more than 200 metres of ivy-clad ‘green screens’ which will help trap particulate matter from passing traffic along Talgarth Road and Butterwick
  • new, large planters to improve the feel and appearance, with plants specially selected for their ability to help absorb pollutants
  • painting and artwork, to visually improve the flyover’s large grey pillars
  • working with nearby St Paul’s School to create a woodland garden at the school entrance, to boost biodiversity and complement its new play area
  • working with local businesses to reduce how many deliveries they receive.

Video: See the murals being painted on the flyover pillars

What do people think?

“I think it really looks nice,” said Dominic Teverson, who works nearby. “It gives everything a better look, it’ll help increase the oxygen and tackle the pollution; plants can really help that.

“As the whole area is concrete, it’s good to see plants and trees.”

Diego de Piazza works in The Ark, alongside the flyover. He said: “I’m not an expert, but planters are much better than concrete. The quality of the air here is not good because of the flyover, but maybe the biggest difference is improving the visual look.”

Laura Fairhurst was a delegate at a conference in the nearby Novotel. “It’s certainly a lot better than leaving it blank,” she said. “Plants are good, but trees would be even better. I don’t know what the science is, but hopefully it’ll improve the air quality.”

And Muhammed Baqa, another worker from The Ark, added: “The traffic is really bad along here, so this does improve the look of the place. It’s nicer to look at than all the traffic.”

‘Woodland garden’ outside St Paul’s School being planted
The ‘woodland garden’ outside St Paul’s School being planted

Background

The work is part of a suite of measures we’re taking to create a ‘low emission neighbourhood’ in Hammersmith.

This includes the recent work to install four parklets and more EV charging points in Hammersmith Grove.

Future plans include a ‘last mile freight service’, where deliveries would be consolidated in a warehouse before undergoing the last leg of their journey by cargo bike or electric vehicle.

Funding has been provided from the council from LIP funding (£40,000) and HammersmithLondon BID through the Mayor’s Air Quality Fund (£196,000).

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