Rapid decision support tool based on novel ecosystem service variables for retrofitting sustainable drainage systems in the presence of trees

The aim of this thesis is to develop a decision support tool for choosing the best possible options for the retrofitting of sustainable urban drainage system (SUDS) techniques using novel ecosystem service variables and modify it to include a reflection of the confidence level of the assessor to minimise uncertainty , and weighting factors that will reflect the professional background of the stakeholders to reduce professional bias. This tool was developed and used to assess 100 sites in Greater Manchester with retrofitting potentials including Brownfield sites. The introduced weighting factors helped to narrow down the choices further. Since the retrofitting of SUDS , especially permeable pavements , and other urban development projects usually involve areas where there are already existing mature trees, further studies were carried out on the damage characteristics of urban tree species on urban structures including permeable pavements, impermeable pavements, kerbs, roads and retaining walls. This was conducted on a different 100 sites also in Greater Manchester. The results of the ‘ecosystem service’ approach were compared with those of traditional ‘community and environmental’ approach developed by CIRIA. A comparison with the traditional approach of determining community and environment variables indicates that permeable pavements are generally a preferred SUDS option regardless of the professional perspectives. This study therefore suggests best tree species for permeable pavements and other related structures, and its outcomes are likely to lead to more combined permeable pavement and tree systems in the urban landscape, which are beneficial for humans and the environment. It will help urban developers in choosing the most suitable trees for the right urban environment. It will also help to save money in maintaining infrastructure such as roads and pavements.


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  • Accession Number: 01607815
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: ARRB
  • Files: ATRI
  • Created Date: Aug 22 2016 10:18AM