London Mayor Sadiq Khan has awarded £4 million to deliver greening projects on the capital’s roads and public spaces for a more climate-resilient city.
The funding is part of the Green and Healthy Streets Fund, which supports projects like rain gardens and tree pits that integrate green infrastructure and climate resilience measures into local streets as well as projects that support the capital’s commitment to promoting active travel, helping reduce carbon emissions and improving air quality.
Measures like rain gardens and tree pits help reduce flood risk by absorbing surface water run-off from hard surfaces while creating a habitat for wildlife.
The investment will make local areas more resilient to heatwaves seen in recent weeks, as well as flooding and other extreme weather events.
The announcement follows a new report commissioned by the Greater London Authority which found investment in such measures would generate benefits worth £11.4 million annually.
A further £1 million will be awarded to Transport for London (TfL) for greening projects on the TfL Road Network.
Mr Khan said: “The climate emergency is the biggest global threat we face today and its effects are on our doorstep. The flash flooding we experienced last year and the extreme heatwaves last month risk becoming more common as we deal with the impacts of the climate crisis.
“This funding will help boroughs across London and TfL invest in projects that will improve climate resilience so we are more prepared to respond to and recover from extreme weather incidents, they will also make the local area greener and more pleasant to be in.
“As mayor I am determined to invest in more green spaces for all. We need to act now to adapt our city and build a better London for everyone – a safer, fairer, greener and more prosperous city for all.”
Some of the projects receiving funding will be implemented in Enfield, Hackney and Sutton.
Penny Rees, TfL Head of Healthy Streets added: “There is a big opportunity to incorporate climate change adaptation measures into our Healthy Streets projects, especially as we convert many of the temporary changes made during the pandemic to permanent. This fund will help to demonstrate what’s possible through delivering exemplar projects.
“We are excited to work with our borough partners to deliver these important projects on behalf of the mayor that will make a real impact on local areas across London.”