Bus Roots

Local green collectives would take on responsibility for creating and maintaining community gardens on top of bus shelters.

This example, Stop T on route 123, illustrates how the bus shelter roof garden could be designed using basic units.

Drawings show the range of different units that communities would be able to use to create biodiverse habitats.

A sketch of the Bus Roots Design Guide.

Close up of a Bus Roots information guide for bus commuters.


  1. Anna Bowman 06 Mar 2013, 08:49

    I love this one. Now so many urban spaces are being redeveloped, its great to have such a simple and effective idea to enhance our everyday environment. We'd all benefit from this. TfL please make this happen.

  2. Lara Kean 06 Mar 2013, 09:20

    This is *such* a good idea - nice work!

  3. Myles Green 06 Mar 2013, 10:16

    What a refreshing idea, and will certainly help in brightening up the urban area's of North London. Thames Water try and promote having more greener area's that can be used for gardens and wildlife, so this will enhance the visual look of the area, develop a community involvement project, and allow children and adults to enjoy different plantlife throughout the seasons. I fully support this across the whole of London, and in my local catchment of Enfield, Harringay, Barnet, and Islington.

  4. Lynda Anne Williams 06 Mar 2013, 13:14

    This is an amazing idea it surely should have won the competition. Bus routes will cover all of the London area - with a pilot scheme on this particular route bus transportation around London would be a visually more attractive experience also providing valuable engagement from the community - an excellent idea. Well done.

  5. John Constable 06 Mar 2013, 13:18

    An excellent idea which neatly links a greening of the urban environment with community involvement in their creation and maintenance.

  6. Catherine Tunnard 06 Mar 2013, 13:22

    I love this idea, great way to cheer up all the miserable commuters in london, improve community involvement in eco-friendly projects and use all those boring bus shelter rooftops for something people would really enjoy!

  7. Jaco Bam 06 Mar 2013, 14:46

    Fantastic creative idea! Even though London's bus shelters have beautiful iconic designs, they all look the same and have become monotonous. A big problem is that they are being vandalised regularly. By involving communities in this way, people will take ownership and pride in their urban landscape. I think it has the potential to create new and meaninful places that will showcase London as a creative, diverse and forward thinking future 'Ecopolis'.

  8. Hannah Parker 06 Mar 2013, 16:52

    What a unique idea, I can imagine my usual traffic-jammed bus commute coming alive with wildlife and colour. I donít think there is anything like this in any other city around the world. Come on Boris - Bring on bus roots!

  9. Sam & Elis James 06 Mar 2013, 19:58

    Epic idea. This illustration rocks. Go Bus Roots! From 2 enthusiastic school boys. Perhaps local schools could take ownership of shelters involving children in a community project which fits in with school eco-clubs and environmental teaching.

  10. Maria Morgan 07 Mar 2013, 12:24

    Excellent idea - what an imaginative use of some wasted space!

  11. Elsie Jenkins 08 Mar 2013, 22:11

    I love this idea, one which could be used.

  12. Hannah Evans 11 Mar 2013, 08:25

    Love this, it will make people smile with the sight of inner city 'green' and flowers on their commuter routes and will be helping the city- and bees!

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Bus Roots

Turn unused bus shelter roofs into community urban landscapes

Highly commended

Bus Roots aims to make the barren spaces on top of bus shelters into community urban gardens, to be tended by local schools, care homes, churches or street collectives, so that each garden is the responsibility of a ‘guardian’.

Each bus shelter would provide a stepping stone of new habitats for native species, creating a ‘nature trail’ and a visual delight for passengers with a seat on the top deck of passing buses from, for example, Upper Walmstow to Blackhorse Road.

A simple design guide would be distributed to get  groups started and each garden will consist of a combination of basic units that can be adapted for each bus shelter setting.




Waltham Forest


Submitted by

Wynne James


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Landscape Institute


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