Biogeographic region: Continental/temperate climate
Surface area: 77.3 ha
Region/Province: Łódź Region (Voivodeship)
The International Horticultural Exhibition 2024 in Łódź (Poland) will cover 2 parks (3rd May Park – Historic Park and Baden Powell Park) and the neighbouring green square in the City centre (altogether covering over 77 ha).
The exhibition’s title "Nature of the City" expresses the desire for a city as a place to live in a pleasant environment to live, work, rest, entertain and relax. The exhibition will not only concern revitalization (urban revival), but also the shaping of the urban landscape and the use of the potential of green spaces in cities.
Currently, these parks and the green square are separate green spaces, but in 2024 exhibitions and floral constructions will cover these three green spaces and they will form one, coherent exhibition site. In connection with the Expo, the character of these green spaces may change significantly, and they may lose some of their previous functions delivered to city residents.
The development of three parks foreseen as a site of the International Horticultural Exhibition 2024 aims to serve as an urban green space allowing for urban revitalisation, shaping the urban landscape and using the potential of green spaces in cities especially with regards to the provision of cultural ecosystem services, such as aesthetics, entertainment, heritage and interpersonal integration.
PRINCIPLE UF-NBS (Urban Forests as Nature-Based Solutions) ACTION(S)
The theme of the exhibition concerns the use of nature for the development of the City and improving quality of residents’ life.
- Increasing the quantity and improving the quality of green spaces in the City;
- New plantings of trees, decorative shrubs and flowers;
- Creation of green walls and green corridors;
- Creation of small ponds, water reservoirs and fountains.
OTHER PRINCIPLE NBS ACTION(S) – non-UF
- Big outdoor events e.g., exhibitions, fairs, concerts;
- New park infrastructure, leisure equipment, pavilions and restaurants at the Exhibition site.
- Changing image of the urban environment
If the Expo 2024 is organised in a designated place, then a certain group of residents will lose access to these green spaces – due to fees, fences, noise and crowds. However, the City Administration ignores local opinions, including the association of concerned inhabitants. The Expo slogan is "Nature of the city" and that seems rather ironic, especially given that the exhibition will be organised in quite a "wild" and historic park, instead of e.g., undeveloped green spaces. It is likely that with the Expo the parks will cease to perform their current functions – with new paved paths and exhibition buildings, part of trees will be cut down, parks will lose their wildness and unique character, and also biodiversity (while biodiversity should be a cornerstone of NBS).
The Expo finances are constructed based on the city's budget with the support of the Polish government, private investors and potential EU funding.
National government funds:
Decision pending, subject to additional discussion and broader political tensions (one political party is ruling in the country, while another (opposition) in the city of Łódź.
The EXPO 2024 budget may be supported by EU subsidies. Co-financing of projects related to environmental protection and urban regeneration falls within the European Parliament's priorities for the coming years.
- Green urban areas
- Parks and gardens
- Choice of plants
The compilation of this case study description has been funded by the Horizon 2020 CLEARING HOUSE project. This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 821242.