Greening the Grey: Planting the Edge of the Tricorn Site Market Way Portsmouth

Proposal June 2011 Implemented 2015 by the Shaw Trust, designed by Portsmouth City Landscape Architect - in time for completion of the Ben Ainslie Americas Cup building in Old Portsmouth.  Temporary greening of trees and shrubs in containers will remain in place until the site is redeveloped, when the plants will be relocated in the city's parks and gardens

The Site – current state Carl Leroy-Smith, Deer Park Alpha Design

Northern edge of the Tricorn site bordering Market Way and Cascades Approach.

TLord Mayor is launching the new planting on 22 May at 10 am on site

The Site – current state  Carl Leroy-Smith, Deer Park Alpha Design

The Site

Northern edge of the Tricorn site bordering Market Way and Cascades Approach.


Looking toward St Agathas

Looking towards Commercial Road

Why green the site?

Members of the Portsmouth Society and a City Council officer met on the site in April 2011 and agreed why we want to green this site.  As a main road entry point to the city centre, the bare expanse of carpark does not give the impression of a vibrant, innovative, well designed approach for visitors to the Historic Dockyard, shoppers, university students' parents... not to mention how it feels to Portsmouth residents.

Why green the site?
Experience in other places
How much of the site?
Purpose eg improving the entrance to the city, temporary greening....

Who will do it?
How will it be done?
Who will maintain it?
How will it be paid for?
Negotiations and contribution from lessee

There is currently a gap on the south side of Market Way in the 'green corridor' which otherwise extends on the north side from the new landscaping in Mile End by the Highways Agency to St. Agatha's park.  Facing the Tricorn site are eight plane trees and bushes bordering the Pitt Street carpark, maintained by the city council.  Ivies are growing well in the central barrier of the road.

Portsmouth as a city is seriously lacking in greenspace.  This proposal would bring visual benefit - a green link - to a grey, desert like area. to para. one after why we want to green this site.  This would also be a first temporary greening of a recession-hit site in the south of England. Portsmouth City Council and the National Car Parks chairman Sir Nigel Gosling are sponsoring the first two phases of the work.

How will it be done, and who will be involved?

The proposal is to green the elongated triangular site bordering Market Way and the Cascades approach which is not used for carparking - shown on the attached maps kindly supplied by David Moorman.  To launch the greening, special arts events related to the site’s history will be screened.

As the Northern Quarter development which has planning permission is not going ahead, the proposal is for a timescale of five years, rather than one-off events such as Greening the Grey in Islington, although these and activities with local artists and gardeners would not be ruled out for later phases. 

Tree in concrete pipe Berlin            Silver birch trees, High Line New York

Hazel nut tree                              Tree in plastic dustbin Art Space garden Southsea

Shrubs: Sea Buckthorn, Tamarisk, Phormiums, Bamboo
Phormiums  in Southsea

Shrubs and plants in low cost containers Berlin

Plants in bulk bags inside containers made of pallets and creative use of bike slots

Art Space Garden Brougham Road Southsea