A living â€˜green wallâ€™ has been installed on the exterior of St Johns Shopping Centre in Liverpool.
Spanning 65 metres in length, the living green wall is one of the longest in the UK and has been installed as part of a project which seeks to increase green space in urban areas, improve air quality and support health and wellbeing.
The project is being led by The Mersey Forest and is funded through the EU Horizon 2020 project Urban GreenUP. The installation, filled with over 14,000 evergreen plants, encourages bees and other pollinators, whilst making the city centre greener and more environmentally sustainable.
The installation is visible from pedestrianised areas around it and from Queens Square Bus Station.
The green wall is the latest in a series of green projects that St Johns has undertaken. Over the Summer the centre is planning to install beehives on its roof to create â€˜bee-lanesâ€™ which will provide a shelter for bees and other pollinators in the city centre.
The Urban GreenUP project has been awarded nearly Â£3.5m of European funding to tackleenvironmental issues through nature-based solutions, with St Johns being one of many projects in the city centre.
Commenting on the installation of the living green wall, Neil Ashcroft, Centre Manager at St Johns, said: â€˜We are thrilled to launch our living green wall today. Through months of hard work, and with the challenge of safely undertaking work during the COVID-19 pandemic, we have delivered an important initiative that not only enhances the shopper experience, but also benefits the local community.
â€˜Green spaces in many city centres are few and far between and we understand as a community shopping centre our role is to help improve the built environment and to bring wider benefits to the community by improving air quality, biodiversity and health and wellbeing across the city.â€™
Bill Addy, chief executive of Liverpool BID Company, said: This installation makes our city centre greener and more environmentally sustainable. It is important for us to improve the experience for everyone who visits our city centre and weâ€™ll look forward to welcoming all to see it in the weeks ahead.
â€˜We are really proud to see the outcome of a project we started back in 2016 when we commissioned a city centre green audit that turned into a Â£3.5m European project to which, the green wall on St Johns is one of the main highlights in the city centre.â€™