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DES 58

A More Sustainable Approach to Urban Freeway Vegetation Design and Management

Stephen Thorpe and Peter May

Freeways are important components of the urban landscape and they must service functional, aesthetic and social requirements.  This guide examines the sustainability of urban freeway vegetation and how design can be integrated with management to achieve more sustainable vegetation.

Recent design of freeway vegetation is dominated by an 'international design style' however there is movement to a more 'ecological' approach utilising a range of species, including indigenous species, and encouraging ecological processes within the landscape.  In this note vegetation life costs are examined and the financial, energy and water inputs into vegetation establishment and management are considered. 
Vegetation selection issues are discussed and a model for selection is provided.  The physical characteristics of urban freeway landscapes are described in the context of the ability to ameliorate them to enhance vegetation performance.  Maintenance strategies are reviewed, and how their links to vegetation performance objectives and the consequences of failure, provide a basis for maintenance planning and decision making.  

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Copyright | Disclaimer | ISSN: 1442-5017