Russell is a civil engineer with a passion for integrated, sustainable green urban form and function. As Senior Assets Lead with the City of Unley he continues to build on his private sector and local government experience by accessing specialist horticultural and arboricultural knowledge for green engineering projects from the scoping stage. Russell has formed and led design and construction teams on projects incorporating porous and permeable road and footpath pavements on reactive clay soil, ‘daylighting’ of urban stormwater systems, rain gardens for flow moderation and purification, and harvesting storm runoff for passive urban irrigation. Russell’s teams have won state, national and professional association awards for environmental leadership and sustainability, research, and for innovation. He focuses not only on the project outcomes but also on improving how councils deliver projects, on intergenerational equity, and on making the world a better place one project at a time. When he’s not in the office he might be on the ice hockey rink, searching out interesting cuisines around the world with his family, or perhaps just keeping his bees busy at home.
Treenet Symposium Speaker
Engineering for Trees
Urbanisation has delivered society many benefits but has also created problems. Low albedo and high thermal mass create urban heat islands. Altered hydrological cycles can lead to downstream flooding or desertification, pollution, and erosion. Loss of vegetation and the resulting nature deficit increases human physical and mental health disorders and diseases. With traditional engineering and urban design approaches problems have increased as city size has increased. More of the same can’t fix this. The solutions to these issues will be holistic, multidisciplinary, and focused on life. Traditional urban engineering is evolving to support urban green life that manages stormwater, moderates microclimates, remediates soils and sustains the micro and macro biodiversity we can’t live without. This paper reports research and case studies that show green engineering can support life and engineering outcomes simultaneously. Research and working demonstrations are detailed that show infiltration devices and porous surfaces can provide effective stormwater management solutions in roads, on verges, in car parks, on parks and reserves and in private gardens. Green engineering solutions support urban forests and the vegetation enhances the efficiency and effectiveness of the engineering, which combined help to restore nature’s circular systems in urban areas.