Green Infrastructure as Urban Melody: The Integration of Landscape Principles into Green Infrastructure Planning and Design in China and the UK

Ying Li, Ian Mell

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

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The concept of green infrastructure has gained political momentum globally and, therefore, has been rapidly introduced into planning theory, policy, and practice in the USA and Europe. Yet, it does not have a single widely recognised or accepted definition and has been adopted fluidly by various disciplines. In this chapter, discussions of green infrastructure focus on landscape architecture interpretations in both planning and design at various scales in China and the UK. The aim of this chapter is to further understand the social, economic, and ecological values of urban green infrastructure within diverse development contexts and use China as a key focus of this discussion. However, an understanding of the legacy of ‘green infrastructure’ planning based on UK and North American conceptualisations is critical to appreciating the nuance of application in China. The process of urbanisation has escalated rapidly in China since it opened up economically from the late 1970s onward. A significant part of this was the adoption of Western approaches to the design, building, and management of green infrastructure in the urban areas. Consequently, there has been an increase in public space, parks, riverside walks, and squares built within Chinese cities that reflect a global understanding of landscape rather than classical Chinese interpretations. The clash of styles provides an interesting lens through which to review the spatial development of green infrastructure examining how the application of Western ideas is applied in a Chinese context. This reflects on the plan-making and design of green infrastructure as well as its contribution to people’s daily life, health, and well-being and the harmony between nature, the city, and people. The chapter concludes that green infrastructure plays a central role in promoting an urban melody through the design and provision of connected and high-quality green space. By creating a multi-scaled and multifunctional set of landscape resources, green infrastructure can be considered to orchestrate the symphony between nature and city.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPlanning with Landscape: Green Infrastructure to Build Climate-Adapted Cities
EditorsCamila Gomes Sant'Anna, Ian Mell, Luciana Bongiovanni Martins Schenk
Place of PublicationCham
PublisherSpringer Cham
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9783031183324
ISBN (Print)9783031183317
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2023

Publication series

NameLandscape Series


  • Landscape principles
  • Green infrastructure
  • Urban melody
  • China and UK


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