As part of the euPOLIS project dedicated to improving the quality of the city’s environment by introducing solutions based on nature in public areas, the local team in Belgrade started their first „tangible“ work on creating a micro-climatic park.

The swamp oak trees now stand tall on the Zemun Quay

The process begins by planting 20 specific trees at specific micro-locations on the Zemun quay near the pillars of the Old Railway Station, one of the most popular urban getaways that attract visitors, recreationists, and outdoor enthusiasts all year round.

Thanks to the local expert teams of the Faculty of Civil Engineering, Belgrade, En Plus Company, and Mikser Organization, with the full support of the City of Belgrade’s public utility company Gradsko zelenilo (City Greenery), the initial portion of 20 trees with the features to mitigate climate change and support visitors’ wellbeing, was planted late December, with additional 150 to follow!

The local expert team selected seedlings that will mitigate respiratory, cardiovascular, and other health disorders, and do not cause allergic reactions. For example, the tree Quercus palustris (swamp oak), with its secretion has a positive effect on the cardiovascular system, and simultaneously significantly cools the air by evaporation from the large surface of leaves.

This effect is achieved by selecting plants with specific properties, from the shape and size of the tree and leaves to the density of the canopy. Their chemotaxonomic characteristics (volatile/vaporizable components) play a significant role, affecting the preconditions for developing the above-mentioned health conditions. By developing a distinct planting geometry and diversity of spices, the euPOLIS experts aim to synergize all these characteristics of different plants to regenerate biodiversity (attracting insects, birds, and small animals..)

This micro-climate park will soon also feature an eco-edu hub designed to demonstrate a clean, healthy, and top-notch urban wastewater management system, along with vertical farming solutions, to attract, educate, and befriend local residents, and experts to embrace new ways of planning and living in cities.

A. Malušev-R. Božović