Dr Harry Smith, Director of Studies for Urban Planning & Property Development within the School of the Built Environment, was invited to speak at Ecobuild 2014, which took place from 4 to 6 March at London's ExCeL.
Ecobuild is a major annual showcase of sustainable design, construction and innovation in the UK. This year it celebrated its 10th anniversary with over 600 of the most innovative and influential practitioners included in its seminar programme. As well as hosting a huge range of trade exhibitors, this year's conference was organised around two arenas with ongoing conference sessions, and six dedicated content zones with seminar series on the following themes: design; building performance & BIM; refurb & retrofit; green energy; water, waste & materials; and future cities.
Greening the docks
The programme included an awards ceremony for 'Greening the docks', a competition sponsored by Ecobuild and the Landscape Institute for ideas to regenerate and green London's Royal Docks. This event included a debate which considered water sensitive design and green infrastructure ideas, and asked how the area can be made more resilient against environmental, social and economic challenges and be transformed into a world-class location including how this might be funded. Hosted by Thomas Lane, Group Technical Editor for Building & Ecobuild, speakers included Sue Illman, President of the Landscape Institute; Richard Blakeway, Deputy Mayor for Housing, Land and Property at the Greater London Authority; Lars Gemzøe from internationally renonwed Gehl Architects; Peter Barbalov from Terry Farrell & Partners; and Dr Harry Smith from the School of the Built Environment at Heriot-Watt University.
Dr Smith spoke about the challenges of setting up the appropriate institutional structures to turn good sustainable design ideas into practice. His intervention drew on the extensive research experience within SBE's Centre for Excellence in Sustainable Building Design on waterfront regeneration and long-term 'place-keeping' of open space.
Dr Smith said: "How we integrate water into urban design and into long-term management of our urban areas is becoming increasingly important, not only in response to climate change but also to facilitate environments that foster health and wellbeing. Being invited to speak at Ecobuild was an excellent opportunity to disseminate the innovative work we are doing in this area at the School of the Built Environment."
More information, including image galleries of the day, can be found on here.
"Being invited to speak at Ecobuild was an excellent opportunity to disseminate the innovative work we are doing"