Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/154846
Title: Greening the Urban Habitat – A Quantitative and Empirical Approach
Authors: HO, Kim Hin David 
Issue Date: 30-May-2019
Publisher: World Scientific Publishing Ltd, Singapore.
Citation: HO, Kim Hin David (2019-05-30). Greening the Urban Habitat – A Quantitative and Empirical Approach. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: This book introduces the Singapore Green Plot Ratio (GnPR) as an Urban Planning Metric to promote the use of greenery for new and existing buildings in Singapore. Increasing urban greenery enhances the quality of our built environment. Since independence in 1965, through the vision of its founder, Mr Lee Kuan Yew, Singapore has been transformed from a third world city into one of the world’s most livable metropolises. Today, Singaporeans are privileged to live in a Garden City which is being transformed into a City in a Garden. According to the National Parks Board (NParks), over the decades, flowering species have been introduced to make our streetscape more vibrant. The pervasive green network of nature reserves, parks, park connectors, tree-lined roads and other natural areas has made living in the city more pleasant. Efforts to conserve natural heritage have seen four areas gazetted as nature reserves and there has been an increase in wildlife. The Singapore Green Plot Ratio (GnPR) is an urban planning metric that urban planners and architects can use to enhance the provision of urban greenery in both new and existing buildings in Singapore. Trees and shrubs in the Singapore not only reduce the energy that is needed to keep buildings cool but also cleanse and refresh the air we breathe. Urban greenery plays an imperative role in promoting health and well-being. It is imperative for the mental and emotional growth of both children and adults. Urban greenery has even been associated with reducing crime rates. While it is essential that the GnPR retains its original integrity as an urban complement of the LAI, several advantages exist for deploying the GnPR in the Singapore Building Control Authority (BCA) Green Mark allocation policy for greenery provision. The argument for urban greenery lies not so much with energy savings but primarily with social sustainability. There is growing support for the argument that greenery adds to real estate value and rental yields. Consequently, this book looks at achievable LAI values and their installation costs for specific plant types that discriminate between plant categories rather than plant species. This book discusses the Singapore Green Plot Ratio and how it can be used by urban planners and architects for both new and existing developments. There are five chapters. Chapter 1: Introduction discusses the concept of the Singapore Green Plot Ratio. Chapter 2: Urban Greenery provides a survey of international best practices of urban greenery for various land-use types. Chapter 3: Landscape Design Guidelines for using the GnPR in Singapore suggest various strategies that urban planners and architects can adopt to enhance the provision of urban greenery in new and existing developments. Chapter 4: Statistical Analysis and the Optimization of the GnPR provides guidance on the capital and maintenance costs for various levels of urban greenery provision. Chapter 5: Conclusion looks at the way ahead for further enhancements to the GnPR concept. In its application, the GnPR is an urban complement of the leaf area ratio (LAI) concept. The GnPR concept can be deployed in the BCA Green Mark certification scheme for greenery provision. Achievable LAI values and the installation costs for specific plant types suggest that urban planners and architects should discriminate between plant categories rather than between plant species. Advantages exist for larger plants over the smaller and perhaps faster growing plants. For biodiversity, larger plants are more desirable than smaller ones. In the near future, a new and overall weighted greenery measure, comprising guidelines for providing urban greenery in both new and existing buildings as well as urban landscapes, will further enhance the environmental sustainability of Singapore.
URI: https://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/154846
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