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Twenty ideas for

Integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development Twenty ideas for integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development

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Inhoudsopgave

Introduction

Introduction...........................................................................3

This is the Manual for integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development for use by urban planners, designers, architects, landscape architects and developers. Included here are twenty ideas that can be applied to integrating biodiversity in the design of buildings and public space. Buildings offer many opportunities for enhancing biodiversity in Amsterdam. By applying relatively simple and inexpensive interventions, buildings can occupy an invaluable place in an urban ecosystem. Nesting sites for birds, roosting locations for bats, and green roofs or faรงades are just a few examples. Integrating biodiversity in urban development will meet both present and future demands for providing people and wildlife with a healthy living environment. The best guarantee for obtaining this highly desirable living environment is including the need for biodiversity early in the planning process.

Why is integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development so important?...........................................4 Ask the advice of an urban ecologist....................................4 IJburg: a successful integration of biodiversity.....................5 Examples of integrating biodiversity in buildings.................8 Examples of enhancing biodiversity in public spaces and courtyard gardens.............................24 Overview of ways to integrate biodiversity in planning and development.............................................44 Specific requirements relevant to certain measures...........46 Important points..................................................................48 More information................................................................48

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Twenty ideas for integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development

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Why is integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development so important? Amsterdam is a rapidly growing city. Many developments are planned for the coming years. To meet both present and future demands for providing people and wildlife with a healthy living environment, biodiversity will have to be given a meaningful place in the design of new developments and public space. Amsterdam has included the goal of integrating biodiversity as a condition in its urban planning process

Contributing to an urban ecosystem New buildings can be provided with nesting bricks for birds – a relatively inexpensive measure suitable for sparrows, swifts and starlings. Roosting facilities for bats can also be included. Gardens and public space can be laid out to create good habitats for all kinds of animals. A design process that includes biodiversity as a factor ensures the healthy development of the city. Every development project or project area that contributes to

the functioning of a healthy ecosystem ensures more diversity and a pleasant living environment. Green space and measures to enhance biodiversity make the city climate-adaptive, reduce the urban heat island effect, and encourage local inhabitants to exercise.

Functions reinforce each other Integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development makes use of possibilities such as roofs and façades. Green roofs and façades offer many advantages. In summer, they reduce temperatures of both the building and the urban climate. In winter, they retain the building’s heat. Green roofs also serve as a buffer for rainwater to keep the sewage system from overflowing after a heavy downpour. When functions are combined, they reinforce each other. Solar panels, for example, will be more effective in combination with a green roof since they will not become as warm.

Ask the advice of an urban ecologist Every project development area has its own characteristics and opportunities. Standard options are available for encouraging sparrows, swifts and bats to inhabit an area, but creating a green roof or a nesting box for a peregrine falcon requires a specialised approach. Since urban ecologists know the best ways to integrate biodiversity in each project development area, be sure to involve them in every planning process.

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Maintenance

IJburg: a successful integration of biodiversity Some of the previously mentioned opportunities were realized in the residential development of IJburg. Many of these residential buildings provide accommodations for birds and bats. Research has shown that these efforts have been very successful. Sparrows have now become common in the area, swifts are occupying the nesting bricks, and various bat species are making use of the roosting facilities there. This benefits

both biodiversity and the local inhabitants. These species catch many insects. Swifts by day and bats by night consume many of the large population of mosquitoes in the IJburg area. Just one bat devours an average of 3,000 insects a night. This is a good example of how birds and bats are making the present and future living environment more pleasant for people.

Proper maintenance is crucial for a landscapearchitecture-design project. This is why measures related to landscape architecture design (measures 4 - 20) should always be coordinated with the ecologist

Contact natuurinclusief@amsterdam.nl

Twenty ideas for integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development

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Inhoudsopgave 1. Nesting bricks for birds.....................................................9 2. Bat boxes........................................................................12 3. Insect hotels and bricks...................................................14 4. Green roofs.....................................................................16 5. Brown roofs.....................................................................18 7. Green faรงades.................................................................20 8. Faรงade gardens...............................................................22 9. Biodiverse playgrounds...................................................25 10. Drainage using ground infiltration (bioswales).............26 11. Rainwater ponds...........................................................28 12. Natterjack toad.............................................................30 13. Hedges .........................................................................31 14. Flowers under the tree..................................................32 15. Ecologically-friendly banks............................................34 16. Green quay walls...........................................................36 17. Sand martin and kingfisher nesting walls......................38 18. Wildernis walls...............................................................40 19. Bee and butterfly paradise............................................41 20. An interconnected ecological structure........................42

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Examples of integrating biodiversity in buildings

1. Nesting bricks for birds

Constructions for people and wildlife Constructions can offer plants and wildlife perfect accommodations. These can include not only residential developments, but also office buildings, hotels, schools or bridges. Taking relatively inexpensive measures can make a substantial contribution to the local biodiversity and can be applied when building new structures or renovating existing ones.

Bird species that nest in urban areas often depend on permanently available nesting sites in buildings. New constructions can be equipped with special recessed nesting bricks. Nesting bricks can be either visible or invisible and installed into or onto a façade. Each bird species uses its own specific nesting brick. There are nesting bricks/boxes available for: ■■ Sparrows ■■ Swifts ■■ House martins ■■ Barn swallows

could be an ivy or other climbing plant clinging to a façade and/or a hedge or shrub (preferably a thorny species). These kinds of plantings provide these species with both cover and food in the form of insects. This is why it’s a good idea to accompany a nesting brick for sparrows and starlings with a green façade (7), a façade garden (8) and/or a pond (11). Swifts have to have access to water and clay near their nesting site.

Tall buildings

■■ Starlings ■■ White wagtails ■■ Black redstart ■■ Peregrine falcons

Where to place them Place nesting bricks on the north or east side of the building (and not above windows). This way, the nests are not exposed to too much sun. Since swifts and sparrows nest in colonies, their nesting bricks should be placed in clusters of at least six. Swifts and house martins need an approach route unobstructed by structures, trees, etc. and which is at least four metres from the ground to the brick. For this reason, the best sites for placing either the protruding or recessed bricks would be at a corner or on a narrow façade of the building. Even a height of three metres will be enough for sparrows. Under sloping tiled roofs, openings for birds can be left beneath the lowest row of roof tiles at the height of the eaves. This enables a sparrow to build a nest sheltered by the roof tiles. The best place for swift nest moulds would be beneath a gutter or an eave.

Peregrine falcons prefer a high nesting site. Buildings taller than eighty metres are suitable as nesting sites for this species. The nesting box has to be installed on the northeast side of the building; winds will be too strong on the southwest side. A layer of wood chips or small pebbles will enhance breeding success. Barn swallows also prefer high nesting sites. Nesting bricks for barn swallows can be mounted up to heights of 40 metres.

Bridges Barn swallows, swifts and white wagtails will also nest under bridges, but each prefers a different height. These specifications are provided in the table on page 46. www.bij12.nl > zoek op ‘gierzwaluw’ > Kennisdocument-Gierzwaluw www.checklistgroenbouwen.nl www.vogelbescherming.nl > In mijn tuin > Tuinadvies nodig?

Surroundings Nesting brick for sparrows

For sparrows and starlings, it is essential to have vertical plant material at least three metres in height within five metres of the nesting site. This Openings for birds under roof tiles

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Nesting bricks for swifts Orientation: north, east, west Place at least 4 m. from ground level. Mount on façade or under roof on the side sheltered from the wind Material: concrete with plant and wood fibres Dimensions: 43.0 x 17.5 x 17.5 cm (WHD) Weight: approx. 6.3 kg Nesting brick for swifts mounted in a façade

Faunaflat

Flight path

Nesting brick for swifts mounted under an eave

≼4.0m obstacle free

Common swift and swift

#Vertaling ontbreekt

#Vertaling ontbreekt

Swift in nesting brick

Obstacle free

Sparrow perched on a nesting brick

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Twenty ideas for integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development

#Vertaling ontbreekt

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2. Bat boxes

Bats like spending time inside buildings. Bat boxes are very easy to incorporate in façades during the construction of new buildings. Special recessed bat boxes can be mounted visibly or practically invisibly in the cavity wall. A recessed model is preferable since it provides bats with a better climate. Open expansion joints and gaps between houses also provide good mating roosts for bats, although these joints and gaps should not be obstructed by insulation materials, etc. Beneficial for: ■■ Common pipistrelle ■■ Nathusius’s pipistrelles ■■ Serotine bats ■■ Particoloured bats ■■ Pond bats

in tall buildings are especially well suited as roosting sites for particoloured bats.

Where to place them Bat boxes should be mounted on a southwest façade between four metres (lower limit) and fifty metres (upper limit) and not above windows. When it comes to their orientation, however, hibernation roosting boxes are the exception and should be mounted on the north side of a building. The boxes should not be exposed to light at night and must provide a fall distance of at least two metres.

Bat box

A practically invisible recessed bat box

Bat boxes

Recessed bricks Also used as a hibernation roost with access to the cavity wall.

Bruggen Bridges can be designed to provide not only nesting sites for birds but also roosting locations for bats. A good example is the bridge nicknamed ‘the bat bridge’ in the Dutch town of Monster.

High-rise buildings Buildings taller than thirty metres are suitable as roosting sites for particoloured bats. This species is currently rarely seen in Amsterdam, but recessed roosting boxes

Also see ‘Specific requirements relative to certain measures’, page 47. www.zoogdiervereniging.nl > ‘zoogdiersoorten’ > download ‘brochure building batfriendly’ written in English).

Flight opening: 15.0 x 9.0 x 2.0 cm (WHD) Dimensions: 28.0 x 47.5 x 12.5 cm (WHD)

The ‘bat bridge’ in Monster

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3. Insect hotels and bricks

Recessed bricks, stacked bricks and insect hotels contribute to a healthy population of solitary bees and butterflies in the city. Solitary bees and butterflies are an important link in the food chain, including humans. They pollinate 60% of our fruit and vegetable plants. Insect hotels and bricks can be mounted on both new and existing buildings. Beneficial for: ■■ Butterflies such as the small tortoiseshell, European peacock and various species of cabbage whites and small blues. ■■ Solitary bees.

Brick bee hotels

is also close to native nectar and pollen-bearing flowering plants (including shrubs and trees). Brick bee hotels have to be installed on the sunny side of a building. Insect hotels can also be placed on the ground as long as they are not shaded by a building or tree. The more hours of sunshine in a day, the better. The hotel should face the southwest. Bee hotels can also be placed on rooftops. (Also see ‘Specific requirements relative to certain measures’, page 47)

Where to place them Mount the insect hotels and bricks in a locationthat offers shelter from wind and rain and

Species: solitary bees, bumblebees Orientation: south, southwest, west Mount at heights of 1-10 metres from the ground Dimensions: model A) 21.5 x 10.5 x 6.5 cm model B) 10.5 x 10.5 x 10.5 cm Material: concrete with wood fibre Maximum diameter of cavities/holes: 6 mm Depth of cavities/holes: at least 6 cm

Insect hotel

Species: all species of insects including bees and butterflies Orientation: south, southeast, southwest, west Location: at ground level or on a roof Dimensions: approx. 150x150x30 cm Material: wooden construction filled with natural materials such as wood, twigs, reeds, hay, stones and pebbles Maximum diameter of cavities/holes: 6 mm Depth of cavities/holes: at least 6 cm

Brick bee hotel

Insect hotel in Vondelpark, Amsterdam

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4. Green roofs

Extensive roof 1 Vegetation 2 Thin substrate

Green roofs enrich the urban landscape and promote recreation. Since they provide an excellent surface habitat for a wide range of plants and animals, they make a very substantial contribution to biodiversity. Green roofs are also a perfect solution for recovering rainwater. The recovered rainwater can later be used for such purposes as irrigating a rooftop garden. In addition, solar panels operate more efficiently on a green roof because they perform better at temperatures below 25°C. A green roof can also be created on an existing building.

layer of substrate planted in moss or sedum, and perhaps supplemented with herbaceous plants and grasses. Varying the thickness of the substrate can result in microclimates, which encourage biodiversity. An intensive roof has the highest level of diversity in every respect. Having a thick layer of substrate between 80 and 120 cm means that it can support grasses, herbaceous plants, shrubs and even trees. An intensive roof is just like a real garden, except that its location is on top of a building. A nature roof is a version of an intensive roof in which the layer of substrate varies in thickness

Beneficial for:

(between 20 and 40 cm) so that it has various gradients. These increase the chances of developing a greater range of types of flora and fauna.

■■ Butterflies ■■ Solitary bees ■■ Birds ■■ Bats ■■ Plants

Implementation A green roof can be one of three versions: an extensive roof, an intensive roof or a nature roof. An extensive roof has a relatively thin (4-7 cm)

3 Layer drainage 4 Layer protective waterproofing mat

www.urbangreenbluegrids.com/measures/green-roofs www.multifunctioneledaken.nl www.rooftoprevolution.nl www.drachtplanten.nl www.dakdokters.nl/en/green-roofs

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Intensive roof 1 Vegetation

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Extensive sedum roof

Twenty ideas for integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development

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Nature roof 1 Vegetation 2 Substrate 3 Filter mat 4 Drainage

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5. Brown roofs

Instead of a growing substrate, a brown roof is covered primarily with sand and stones: recycled rubble, for example. Brown roofs contribute to biodiversity and serve as a water buffer. The bird species using brown roofs as nesting sites are usually the ones that would otherwise nest on sandy sites. Beneficial for: ■■ Plovers ■■ Common terns ■■ Oystercatchers ■■ Black redstarts ■■ Insects

6. Water roofs

Implementation There are no specific guidelines for creating a brown roof. Essentially, the only ‘rule’ is: the more sand with fine rubble, shells and pebbles, the better. If derelict land is available nearby, the top layer can be excavated and deposited on the roof. Even stones and excavated tree trunks can be used.. www.biodivercity.nl > biotopen > steen > bruine daken Making Urban Nature, Niels de Zwarte, Nai010 Uitgevers

Flat roofs can be designed to buffer a certain amount of precipitation. After a heavy downpour, this water remains temporarily on the roof and provides a cooling effect. Meanwhile, it serves as drinking water for birds and attracts insects that become a food source for predators such as bats. A water roof that includes aquatic plants and/or a helophyte filter (a constructed wetland in which plants such as reeds filter the water) can also serve as a habitat for fish. They will then keep the water clean by feeding on the mosquito larvae and algae. A dynamic water roof can be used to collect wastewater from the washing machine, the shower and the kitchen (known collectively as grey water) and purify it sufficiently for recycling.

Implementation Water roofs buffer a layer of water by raising the level of the overflow. In a static water roof, the rainwater then drains at a slower pace using narrower drainpipes. A dynamic water roof is equipped with a control system that discharges water before a rain shower occurs as based on weather predictions. This maximizes storage capacity. A water roof can also be easily combined with an intensive green roof. www.rainproof.nl > zoek op waterdak www.groenblauwenetwerken.com/measures/ water-roofs

Beneficial for: 1 Vegetation 2 Rubble/shells/pebbles/soil from the vicinity 3 Protective waterproofing mat

■■ Damselflies and dragonflies ■■ Butterflies ■■ Fish ■■ Birds ■■ Bats

1 Helophyte

1 Vegetation

1 Drainage

2 Substrate

2 Substrate

2 Protective mat

3 Water

3 Filter mat

3 Power-flow regulator

4 Protective mat Oystercatcher

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7. Green façades

In many ways, a green façade has the same advantages as a green roof. During the summer, a green façade protects a building from excessive solar heat. In the winter, it operates in reverse by keeping heat from escaping to the outside. These plants will not damage the wall of the building. By releasing water vapour, they will cool the urban climate. Street noise will also be diminished by reducing the sound of echoes between the façades. A green façade provides cover, food and nesting sites for birds and insects. Although a façade planting takes up very little ground space, it still covers many square metres with foliage. There are various ways of creating a green façade. The plants can cover an entire wall, they can encircle certain storeys, or they can climb upward in a zigzag pattern. Having built-in flower boxes can tempt residents to fill them with plants. Green façades can also be combined to good effect with nesting boxes that are made of a wood-concrete composite and intended for tits and sparrows. Beneficial for: ■■ Butterflies

1. Self-clinging climbing plants

■■ Solitary bees ■■ Birds ■■ Bats ■■ Plants

Implementation To enhance the local biodiversity, use climbing plants that will benefit birds and butterflies. There are three categories of façade planting: 1 The use of self-clinging climbers such as ivy and Virginia creeper (Parthenocissus tricuspidata). 2 The use of climbing plants that need a support construction in order to grow and climb (e.g. wisteria, clematis, honeysuckle and wild hop). 3 The use of a green wall: this is a system in which the plants grow in containers placed against the façade or in a substrate attached to the façade. Plants used in a green wall could include bittersweet, red bryony, ferns, herbaceous plants and violets. The façade’s orientation (sun/shade) will determine which species would be suitable for the façade planting.

Green facade circular pavilion Zuidas

www.urbangreenbluegrids.com > measures > ‘green facades’.

2. Climbing plants that need a support construction

3. Green wall

Green facade on Onbekendegracht, Amsterdam

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Twenty ideas for integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development

Green wall on Van Diemenstraat, Amsterdam

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8. Façade gardens

A façade garden has much to offer mammals, birds and insects. Its plants are a source of food such as nectar, pollen or berries; they offer nesting sites for birds; and can also serve as an eco-corridor to larger green spaces. Small mammals such as hedgehogs often use these kinds of structures as ‘roads’ to move from one green space to another. A façade garden allows for the rapid drainage of rainwater into the soil and is the least maintenance-intensive form of vertical planting since it requires little if any watering and fertilizing.

Species that produce fruit (such as grapevines or berry plants) or seeds offer food not only for birds but also for the people who live in the building. Façade gardens can be combined to good effect with nesting boxes made of a wood-concrete composite and intended for tits or sparrows. Butterfly bushes, musk mallow, hollyhocks, lavender, oregano, buckthorn, ivy and holly will make a substantial contribution to biodiversity. Beneficial for: ■■ Butterflies ■■ Solitary bees ■■ Birds ■■ Bats ■■ Plants ■■ Small mammals such as hedgehogs

Implementation

Faç

ade

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gar den

Façade gardens on Poolstraat, Staringplein and Sarphatipark in Amsterdam

>1

A properly functioning façade garden has to be at least 45 cm deep and 120 cm wide. A wider garden can support more species, of course, and can provide species such as the hedgehog with more cover. If a façade garden is not included in the design of a building, residents in some districts of the city can create and maintain one of their own. .20

m

www.amsterdam.nl/geveltuin > geveltuin aanvragen/verwijderen > tips voor geveltuinen www.drachtplanten.nl

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Examples of enhancing biodiversity in public spaces and courtyard gardens

9. Biodiverse playgrounds

Twelve ideas for including biodiversity in the design of public spaces and courtyard gardens. These ideas will contribute to a healthy living environment for wildlife and people, as well as to pleasant, relaxing living environments that encourage exercise and play.

A list of ideas for public spaces and courtyard gardens: 9 Biodiverse playgrounds 10 Drainage using ground infiltration (bioswales) 11 Ponds 12 Pools for natterjack toads 13 Hedges 14 Flowers under the tree canopy 15 Ecologically-friendly banks 16 Green quay walls 17 Sand martin and kingfisher nesting wal 18 Wilderness walls 19 Bee and butterfly paradises

Playing in natural environments offers children lots of interesting challenges and inspiration and is good for their health and development. A biodiverse playground is also of benefit to plants and wildlife. And since such areas quickly slow the flow of rainwater after a downpour, this puts less of a burden on sewage systems.

20 An interconnected ecological structure

■■ Plants

Biodiverse playgrounds: Jeugdland

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Twenty ideas for integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development

Beneficial for: ■■ Butterflies ■■ Solitary bees ■■ Birds ■■ Small mammals such as hedgehogs

Implementation A biodiverse playground has to include variations in elevation, sand, water, climbing structures, a climbing tree and the planting of berry bushes and fruit trees. Be sure that the climbing structures are made of sustainably produced wood and have the FSC label. nl.urbangreenbluegrids.com/ > measures > ‘nature for playing’ Speelnatuur in de stad, Josine van den Bogaard, Sigrun Lobst.

Schoolyard, De Ster

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10. Drainage using ground infiltration (bioswales)

A bioswale is a ditch with vegetation on its slopes and a porous bottom. In bioswale systems, the run-off from roofs and roads does not flow into the sewers but is led into the bioswale via aboveground gutters and/or ditches and then into the ground water beneath the soil level. Bioswales can be incorporated into a courtyard garden, other enclosed spaces or in public spaces. They enhance the ecological infrastructure, increase biodiversity and improve the living quality of the city. Bioswales provide small mammals such as the hedgehog and the common shrew with shelter. More naturally designed bioswales (ecologicallyfriendly bioswales) can play an important role as ecological connection zones. A green area designed to reduce the flow of rainwater can also be used effectively in a highly developed urban environment. Beneficial for: ■■ Amphibians ■■ Fish ■■ Birds ■■ Small mammals such as hedgehogs ■■ Butterflies ■■ Solitary bees ■■ Plants ■■ Damselflies and butterfliesJuffers en libellen

Examples of useful plant species for bioswales ■■ Helophytes for the aquatic zone: flowering rush, reeds, lakeshore bulrush, common bulrush. ■■ Tall upright plants for the riparian zone (bank): fireweed, purple loosestrife, water mint. ■■ Low-growing plants for the terrestrial zone: speedwell, common starwort, bugleweed, cuckooflower. ■■ Shrubs and trees for the terrestrial zone: ■■ goat willow, alder.

Implementation Combine a bioswale with a biodiverse playground (see page 25). www.urbangreenbluegrids.com > measures > 1. bioswales 2. nature-friendly bioswales www.rainproof.nl > straat > watervertragende groenstraat kop Zuidas

Bioswale, Betondorp neighbourhood, Amsterdam

Flow-reducing green strip, Zuidas district, Amsterdam GWL (ground-water level)

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11. Rainwater ponds

Rainwater ponds buffer the volume of rainwater and are excellent habitats for plants and animals. Their standing water is a watering place for birds and a breeding habitat for amphibians and insects such as damselflies and dragonflies. A pond with natural (unpaved) banks is a paradise for life in and around the water. Beneficial for: ■■ Amphibians ■■ Fish ■■ Birds ■■ Butterflies ■■ Solitary bees ■■ Damselflies and dragonflies ■■ Plants

Implementation A pond with natural (unpaved) banks is preferably at least 60 cm deep and left to fill with rainwater. This water is unpolluted and has the right pH level for the development of aquatic plants and animals. There are two ways of lining the pond, depending on the ground-water level: ■■ For a pond with a ground-water level of 60 cm or less, use a liner made of canvas or sailcloth. ■■ If the ground-water level is deeper than 60 cm, line the pond with concrete. The bank should have a gentle slope so that amphibians can crawl easily into and out of the water. www.milieucentraal.nl > enter ‘natuurlijke tuinvijver’ as the search term Pond in the Bijenpark, Amsterdam

Green hawker

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12. Natterjack toad

The natterjack toad is a fairly rare species that makes grateful use of cities as a habitat. A pool surrounded by a sandy environment that warms up quickly makes an excellent breeding site for natterjack toads. Such a natterjack toad pool will also attract the common toad and other amphibians. Beneficial for: ■■ Natterjack toads, common toads and other amphibians ■■ Damselflies and dragonflies

13. Hedges

Implementation A shallow pool that will attract toads is easy to construct. Concrete is the best material for a long-lasting pool and will require practically no maintenance. It will continue to collect rainwater and not need any other water to keep it filled. This pool should not be any deeper than one metre below ground level. Its banks should be at least two metres wide and free of vegetation. Loose rockfill should be available within a radius of 50 metres to provide the toads with cover. Just a few of these rocks in the water will prevent dogs from swimming in the pool.

Hedges provide fine shelter for birds and also serve as a perfect ecological fence. Sparrows in particular make good use of them. But small mammals, such as hedgehogs, also take advantage of these kinds of green structures to move from one green area to another. Beneficial for: ■■ Birds ■■ Small mammals such as hedgehogs

Implementation Hedges can be made of various kinds of hedging material. The Zeeland hedge (Zeeuwse haag, as it is known in the Netherlands) consists of various species: 60% hawthorn, 20% blackthorn and 20% field maple. The hedge can also be filled in with elder, blackberry, etc. These fruit-bearing species are useful for both people and wildlife. www.natuurpunt.be

www.ravon.nl > enter ‘aanleg van poelen’ as the search term

free of vegetation / low-growing plants

free of vegetation / low-growing plants

Construction: Rockfill in water Concrete (poured in situ) Steel mesh Trench sand

Natterjack toad pond, Science Park

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14. Flowers under the tree

Covering the ground beneath a tree canopy improves the soil structure and the soil life. The plants on any bit of unpaved soil in the city contribute to biodiversity and better water management. And filling the area under a tree canopy with flowers makes a street a lot more colourful.

Implementation

Beneficial for: ■■ Butterflies ■■ Solitary bees ■■ Birds ■■ Plants ■■ Small mammals

www.urbangreenbluegrids.com > ‘measures’ > ‘Adopting areas under trees and small plots of green’

Mulch the area beneath the tree canopy with a thin layer of organic material, such as leaves. This will encourage biodiversity in the soil itself. Local inhabitants can then adopt these areas and care for them as their own little gardens.

0.8 m GWP

Flowers under the tree canopy

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15. Ecologically-friendly banks

Ecologically-friendly banks that are gently sloping and unpaved make a substantial contribution to biodiversity. They provide perfect nesting sites for birds and shelter for small mammals. An ecologically-friendly bank also makes it easier for fauna to come ashore. Because reeds and common bulrushes naturally purify polluted water, ecologically-friendly banks will have a beneficial impact on water quality. A gently sloping embankment is also safer for children than one that is steep and paved. Beneficial for: ■■ Plants ■■ Birds ■■ Small mammals ■■ Amphibians ■■ Fish ■■ Damselflies and dragonflies

■■ Solitary bees ■■ Butterflies

Implementation As a rule of thumb: the gentler and wider the bank, the more species. Plant populations gradually change as their habitat transitions from an aquatic zone, to a riparian zone, to a terrestrial zone. From aquatic plants to a wildflower meadow. Certain locations can also include a wet berm. In this case, plant as many riparian species as possible, siting them according to the degree of wetness they require. In order to prevent a monoculture of reeds, be sure that the soil is not too rich in nutrients. stowa.nl > enter ‘Handreiking natuurvriendelijke oevers’ as the search term

Ecologically-friendly bank, IJburg, Amsterdam

1:3 1:3

GWP GWP

1:4 1:4

GWP GWP

1:3 1:3

Ecologically-friendly bank, Buikslotermeer neighbourhood, Amsterdam

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16. Green quay walls

Green quay walls accommodating rare wall flora contribute to the local biodiversity. When a quay wall has the right growing conditions, it can provide a habitat for an enormous diversity of species and become a vertical nature reserve. Beneficial for: ■■ Wall vegetation ■■ Ferns ■■ Solitary bees ■■ Butterflies

Implementation A construction especially intended to encourage wall vegetation can be placed against a quay wall. After providing it with a calcareous mortar and a water-permeable layer of substrate, highly valuable wall vegetation will appear amazingly soon. When constructing new quay walls, they can incorporate pre-planted, pre-fab ‘windows’. www.amsterdam.nl > volg het beleid > groen > flora en fauna > stadsplanten

Green quay wall, Nieuwe Herengracht, Amsterdam

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Green quay wall, Amstelsluizen, Amsterdam

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17. Sand martin and kingfisher nesting walls

Quiet locations close to water are perfect for constructing a sand martin or kingfisher nesting wall. A bridgehead, for example, could be a location for a sand martin nesting wall. Beneficial for: ■■ Sand martins ■■ Kingfishers

Implementation

and also because sand martins forage for insects mainly in the air over bodies of water. The most durable construction would be a perpendicular concrete wall at least 1.5 metres high, 3 metres wide, and 1.5 metres deep. The space behind the wall should be filled to the top with loamy sand. Make sure that the sand is then thoroughly compacted. The wall should face northeast and its approach route should not be obstructed by tall vegetation.

Sand martin nesting walls  Site the wall on open water so that it will not be accessible to predators,

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Kingfisher nesting wall  A concrete wall would also be the most durable construction for this kind of nesting wall, but this one would have to be at least one metre tall, 1.5 metres wide and 1.5 metres deep. It should stand perpendicular to the bank, have its base in the water, and have five poles located on both sides of the retaining wall. The space behind the wall has to be filled to the top with clay and loamy sand. Make sure that the clay and sand are then thoroughly

Sand martin nesting wall, Zeeburgereiland, Amsterdam

Kingfisher nesting wall, Westerpark, Amsterdam

Sand martin nesting wall

Kingfisher nesting wall

Twenty ideas for integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development

compacted. The nesting wall should be located adjacent to a hunting territory consisting of a bank at least 500 metres long, which is covered in vegetation and has overhanging branches. www.vogelbescherming.nl > enter ‘oeverzwaluw’ as the search term www.landschapnoordholland.nl > enter ‘IJsvogelhandleiding’ as the search term

Twenty ideas for integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development

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18. Wildernis walls

The spacious cracks in a simple pile of recycled bricks or chunks of construction waste provide an excellent habitat for certain plant and animal species. Both the sunny and shady sides provide microclimates inhabitable for various plant and animal species. Beneficial for: ■■ Toads ■■ Salamanders ■■ Beetles

19. Bee and butterfly paradise

■■ Butterflies ■■ Plants

Implementation The most favourable microclimates develop when the wall faces southwest. Groenblauwe netwerken, Handleiding voor veerkrachtige steden, Hiltrud Potz, Atelier Groenblauw

Stretches of wildflower meadows are an important food source for butterflies and solitary bees. Not only do these species depend primarily on the nectar and pollen this kind of habitat provides, but many other animals, such as birds and small mammals, including hedgehogs, forage and find shelter here. A bee and butterfly paradise not only benefits biodiversity but also upgrades the streetscape. Beneficial for: ■■ Butterflies ■■ Solitary bees ■■ Birds ■■ Plants

Little wilderness wall, Amstelpark, Amsterdam

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Twenty ideas for integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development

Bee paradise, Orlyplein

■■ Small mammals ■■ Toads ■■ Salamanders

Implementation Bees and butterflies need a wide range of native flowering and herbaceous plants, not just during the summer, but also in the spring and autumn. Ensure that the soil composition is right for the seed mixture. The poorer the soil, the better. Various companies in the vicinity of Amsterdam sell these organically or conventionally produced mixtures. www.idyle.vlinderstichting.nl > tips

Bee paradise, Amsterdam-Noord

Twenty ideas for integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development

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20. An interconnected ecological structure

Many animals can thrive in urban and suburban areas. To reproduce and find shelter, they need the right habitats, but also ways to reach them. This requires an effective, ecological infrastructure without any barriers. The ecological structure of Amsterdam (see maps.amsterdam. nl/ecopassages/?LANG=en) interconnects green areas and thus enlarges habitats. An ecological structure consists of a network of both large and small areas of water (‘blue’) and vegetation (‘green’), enables an interconnecting green network within the city and connects it with the surrounding landscape, and is essential for biodiversity. To have this system of eco-corridors function properly requires circumventing any ecological barriers. The map (see maps.amsterdam.nl/ ecopassages/?LANG=en) shows the ecological structure and illustrates the obstacles to be circumvented.

Fauna passage, Rozenburglaan

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Squirrel bridge

Beneficial for: ■■ All urban wildlife

Barriers Each barrier has been investigated to determine what it involves, which measures will have to be taken to circumvent it (fauna passage, fauna ledge, fauna exit site, fauna gutter, fish passage, reeds, squirrel bridge or cattle grid) and what the estimated costs would be. More information about how these barriers still have to be circumvented is available at maps.amsterdam.nl/ecopassages/?LANG=en

Fauna passage

Example of a fauna passage in an underpass

Twenty ideas for integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development

Twenty ideas for integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development

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Overview of ways to integrate biodiversity in planning and development


Specific requirements relevant to certain measures Specific requirements such as dimensions and type of material is needed to apply measures 1, 2 and 3. This information is provided in the following tables.

Measure 1. Nesting bricks for birds Bird species

Sparrow, Colony nester

Swift Starling Colony nester

Recessed / protruding

Minimum / Minimum nesting maximum space and material height (metres)

Both

3/15

Both

4/40

Orientation

Important points

■■ 15 x 8 cm (openings in nesting bricks at least 50 cm apart) ■■ Wood-concrete composite**

North or east or in the shade of a gutter/eave protruding 30 cm

Place at least six nesting bricks next to one another (preferably not above windows)

■■ 43 x 17.5 x 17.5 cm (Zeist type works well)

North or east or in the shadow of a gutter/ eave protruding 30 cm

Place at least six nesting bricks next to one another (preferably not above windows)

■■ Wood-concrete composite** Protruding 3/10

■■ 19 x 18 x 18 cm

North or east

■■ Wood-concrete composite or fibre concrete made with natural fibres Black redstarts

Both

6/20

■■ 19 x 18 x 18 cm

North or east

■■ Wood-concrete composite or fibre concrete made with natural fibres House martins Colony nester

Protruding 6/10

Bat boxes are available in recessed or protruding models and are made from wood-concrete composite or ceramic material. Kind of box Summer roost

Minimum height 4 mtr

Minimum dimensions 50 x 20 x 2 cm compartments

Orientation Can face any direction

Important points Preferably not above windows

Maternity roost

4 mtr

80 x 70 x 3 cm compartments

South or west

■■ Near vegetation and water ■■ Preferably not above windows

■■ Opening near bottom of nesting box

White wagtails

Measure 2. Bat boxes

■■ 17 x 43 x 17 cm

North or east or in the shadow of a gutter/ ■■ Light-coloured wood-concrete com- eave (preferably white) protruding 30 cm posite**

Preferably not above windows

Preferably not above windows

■■ Place at least six nesting bricks next to one another ■■ Near water (e.g. beneath a bridge)

Hibernation roost

4 mtr

80 x 70 x 3 cm compartments

North or east

Preferably not above windows

Roosts for particoloured bats

30 mtr

70 x 50 x 3 cm compartments

North/east/ south/west

Tall buildings (≥30m) (preferably not above windows)

* To prevent thermal bridges, include enough insulating material behind the roosting box when installing it. www.zoogdiervereniging.nl > enter ‘Brochure vleermuisvriendelijk bouwen’ as the search term www.bij12.nl > enter ‘Kennisdocument gewone dwergvleermuis’ as the search term

Measure 3. Insect hotels and bricks Insect hotels and bricks are available in recessed and protruding models. Place insect hotels and bricks near nectar and pollen-bearing plants and shrubs. Kind of insect accommodation

Minimum height

Minimum dimensions

Material

Oriëntation

Brick bee hotel

variable

21 x 10 x 6 cm

Wood-concrete composite

Southwest

Butterfly hotel

3m

15 x 13 x 23 cm

Wood

Southwest

Insect hotel

variable

100 x 100 cm

Various materials: brick, wood, cork

South

■■ Preferably not above ■■ windows Peregrine falcons

Protruding 80/120

■■ 64 x 80 x 62 cm ■■ concreteplex/metal

North or east, not Tall buildings (≥80 with the opening facing metres) (preferably southwest not above windows)

*To prevent thermal bridges, include enough insulating material behind the nesting box when installing it. ** Wood-concrete composite should not be treated with chemical agents. www.vivarapro.nl www.checklistgroenbouwen.nl www.gierzwaluwbescherming.nl > bescherming > neststenen www.bij12.nl > enter ‘Kennisdocumenten Soorten – Natuurbescherming’ as the search term > download ‘Kennisdocument huismus’

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Twenty ideas for integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development

Twenty ideas for integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development

47


Important points

More information

Use native species

Handig naslagwerk

When it comes to food sources, most animals benefit much more from native than exotic species of plants (including trees and shrubs). Butterfly bushes, bird cherry, buckthorn, ivy and holly are woody plants that can make a substantial contribution to biodiversity since they are food sources for birds, butterflies and bees. Trees such as willows and lindens are also ecologically beneficial for insects like bees.

Preventing bird-window collisions When glass reflects the sky, it looks to birds as if they can fly through it. Taking the following measures can prevent bird-window collisions: ■■ Use tinted or non-reflective glass to glaze windows. There is also a type of glass with a UV pattern visible to birds but not to humans. ■■ Place the windows (or the glass sections used in sound barriers) at such an angle that they will not reflect the sky but, for example, the ground. ■■ Apply window stickers (preferably white) to the windows. The rule when using stickers is to apply one figure with a diameter of 20 cm to every square metre of glass surface. Other ways of using figures would be to include figures sandblasted into the glass, or vertical lines 2 cm wide and 10 cm apart.

■■ Green-blue grids: Manual for resilient cities, Hiltrud Potz, Atelier Groenblauw ■■ Making Urban Nature, Piet Vollaard, Jacques Vink, Niels de Zwarte, Nai010 Uitgevers ■■ Speelnatuur in de stad, Hoe maak je dat, Uitgeverij Jan van Arkel ■■ Begroeide daken na 2010, Peter G. Teeuw, Techne Press Amsterdam ■■ Designing for Biodiversity, K. Gunnell, C. Williams, B. Murphy, RIBA Publishing

Useful websites ■■ www.checklistgroenbouwen.nl ■■ www.nextcity.nl ■■ www.biodivercity.nl ■■ www.rainproof.nl ■■ www.bijenhelpdesk.nl ■■ www.vlinderstichting.nl ■■ www.vogelbescherming.nl ■■ www.zoogdiervereniging.nl

Authors Anneke Blokker en Geert Timmermans

Drawings Nina Kopp, Jorine Noordman en Venetia Kollia

Design Ellen Bouma

Photo credits Depositphotos.com, shutterstock, istock.com, VivaraPro and Gemeente Amsterdam.

Acknowledgements Vogelbescherming Nederland Gierzwaluwwerkgroep Amsterdam Maurice Backerra, Ingenieursbureau Amsterdam Els Corporaal, Ruimte en Duurzaamheid Gert de Jong, Gierzwaluwwerkgroep Amsterdam Nimue Smit, Foto omslag Niels de Zwarte, Bureau Stadsnatuur Rotterdam Project Amstel-Stad LOLA landscape architects (vleermuisbrug en faunaflat) NEXT architecten (vleermuisbrug) Buginn Tichelaar Amsterdam, december 2018

Outdoor lighting Try to minimize outdoor lighting since it has a detrimental effect on almost all urban wildlife. This applies especially to land adjoining ecological structures and near facilities for bats.

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Twenty ideas for integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development

Twenty ideas for integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development

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Twenty ideas for integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development

Profile for Gemeente Amsterdam - Ruimte en Duurzaamheid

Twenty ideas for Integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development  

Twenty ideas for Integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development

Twenty ideas for Integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development  

Twenty ideas for Integrating biodiversity in urban planning and development

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